Defence analyst Ikram Sehgal, while speaking during Channel 24’s programme DNA, revealed he had written a letter to Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif inviting him to a yearly breakfast meeting held at Davos. The prime minister declined the invitation citing a busy schedule, he added.
After a refusal by the PM, he said, he invited General (r) Raheel Sharif instead.
Answering a question posed by Pakistan Today Editor Arif Nizami, Sehgal said the prime minister didn’t participate in public talks in Davos; however, he participated in the various bilateral talks with heads of states and businessmen, including Bill Gates.
In an interesting revelation, Sehgal said Information Technology Minister, Anusha Rahman, was given the opportunity to speak and she spoke for around 8-10 minutes. Afterwards, he added, “I introduced Gen (r) Sharif to speak. By the time he had only started his talk by reciting Bismillah, the IT minister took her bag and ‘walked out’ of the meeting.”
She then went back to her delegation and started spreading the news around that it was “army’s show”, he said.
Sehgal applauded Gen (r) Raheel Sharif’s speech, especially the role it played in clarifying and improving Pakistan’s narrative. The retired general participated in five different talks, including three public sessions and two off-camera talks, he added.
“Out of 1,500 people that were there, Gen (r) Raheel Sharif was one of the five most sought after individuals. The Indians were absolutely unprepared for Gen (r) Raheel Sharif,” he added.
Renowned analyst Ahmed Rashid said, “It was unfortunate and shameful that the prime minister didn’t speak at a public gathering—whether a press conference or a speech—in an event which is one of the biggest public events in the world. And he came back after meeting only a few businessmen and heads of states.”