Burying old differences, legendary cricketer Javed Miandad, once a trenchant critic, is now openly batting for Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan in a bid to shield his business interests linked with big construction projects ostensibly owned by India’s most wanted fugitive Dawood Ibrahim.
Miandad, a known associate of Dawood Ibrahim, married his son Junaid with the latter’s daughter Mahrukh Ibrahim.
Recently, his son Junaid launched a YouTube channel “Me and Dad Miandad” for his father to project Miandad’s views on cricket and politics.
To please Imran Khan, the 62-year-old former right-handed batsman, Miandad, does not forget to bash India, particularly Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the BJP and the RSS, in his frequent video messages.
On Imran’s order, the Defence Ministry in return dedicated a Javed Miandad Park in the Clifton’s Cantonment Board area on June 3, 2020. Not far away from the Miandad Park, resides Dawood Ibrahim in the posh Clifton area of Karachi.
Reports say that the inauguration function of the park was attended by chief guest Miandad and a couple of members from Dawood Ibrahim’s family.
In a recent telephonic conversation with IANS, Dawood’s brother Anees Ibrahim had admitted about their construction business, including running prominent hotels in the Emirates.
Despite documentary evidence provided by the Indian government to the Interpol on D-Company’s operations, Anees Ibrahim did not speak much on Dawood’s business interests in Pakistan.
Calling from an undisclosed destination, Anees, wanted in several cases of terror related killings in India, boasted of Miandad’s closeness with Imran Khan. No wonder that since March 26, 2019, Miandad had met Imran at the PM’s residence in Islamabad on more than two occasions.
On twitter, @l_JavedMiandad, the former Pakistan captain and coach, usually retweets Imran’s political messages, especially attacking Modi or the Indian stance on Kashmir affairs.
On April 30, Javed’s tweet made headlines in Pakistan when he said, “I always stand as a line of defence for @ImrankhanPTI and will (continue) to do so.”
On May 26, Miandad appeared on Karachi-based news channel Samaa TV and disclosed that he had called Imran and Ali Zaidi (now a minister in the Imran Khan government) to his house in Karachi (before the general elections in Pakistan) where it was decided that Imran will become the Prime Minister.
Miandad has asserted his closeness to the Prime Minister publicly. In support of the Imran Khan government, Miandad also released a video appealing to expatriates of Pakistan to invest back home.
Sources in Indian intelligence agencies revealed to IANS that soon after Imran became the Prime Minister of Pakistan, senior army and government officials queued up at Miandad’s bunglow at Gulberg street in Karachi.
A few months later, security at two residences of Dawood in Karachi(one in Defence Housing Authority) and the other near Saudi Mosque (Clifton) were upgraded.
Chhota Shakeel, a close lieutenant of Dawood Ibrahim, and Anees Ibrahim, who along with their families also reside in different bungalows in the Defence Housing Authority area in Karachi, also got an upgraded security cover, which includes bullet-proof vehicles and Pak Rangers security cover, intelligence sources added.
Dawood, India’s most wanted fugitive and one of the prime accused in the Mumbai serial blasts of 1993, is reportedly being protected by Pakistan’s spy agency Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) in Karachi.
The UN designated terrorist is suspected to have links with global terror groups, including Al Qaeda, Lashkar-e-Taiba and Jaish-e-Mohammed. Despite several Interpol notices to Pakistan to arrest Dawood, Islamabad has always denied the underworld don’s presence on its soil.