“I thought it was the end. I was a living corpse when I first met you. I had been in far worst condition,” said journalist Imran Riaz Khan on Sunday as he appeared for a first-ever interview on lawyer Mian Ali Ashfaq’s YouTube channel Cross Examination.
Khan reached home in September after he went missing for four months. He was arrested from Sialkot airport on May 11 as he tried to leave the country
Responding to a question regarding his arrest and prolonged disappearance, he said that he had no idea that his disappearance will prolong as he surrendered at the Sialkot airport on May 11.
“I thought it is a normal routine. I had no idea that it will prolong,” he said as he apologised for stammering during the interview.
“What I was saying could be taken as a difference of opinion. Anyone can do that. It does not mean I should be treated as an enemy of this country,” he stated.
He expressed remorse for believing that the “missing persons” were mostly terrorists and their disappearance was justified.
“A perception was made about missing persons and on occasions, I felt that it was justified. I regret for thinking that it was in the interest of the state. I apologise for that,” he added.
On judiciary’s role in his case, Khan said that he was surprised by the role of lower courts that continuously followed his case.
“My perception of the lower courts was different before this. These courts passed verdicts on difficult cases in a couple of days,” he added.
Talking about the current political environment, he said that the multiple arrests of women party workers were setting a pattern in the country.
“It is being done for the first time that women are being booked in multiple cases and kept in jails for long terms. When something like this happen to PPP and PML-N in future, no one will bother,” Khan added.
On future plans, he said that he is not thinking specific about anything for now. “When I start working, I will talk on the story of that day.”