PAKPATTAN (The Thursday Times) — Khawar Maneka, once praising Imran Khan as a “noble gentleman” and denying his role in his divorce with Bushra Maneka, has dramatically reversed his stance, accusing Khan of ruining his 28-year marriage. This stark contradiction, coupled with Maneka’s benefits under Khan’s government, paints a clear picture of hypocrisy.
Khawar Maneka, the former husband of Pakistan’s former first lady Bushra Bibi, has unleashed a storm of controversy with his latest public statements. Once known for his reserved nature, especially amid the flurry of criticism faced by his ex-wife and her current husband Imran Khan, the incarcerated leader of PTI and former Prime Minister of Pakistan, over the past few years, Maneka’s recent revelations have cast a new light on his character, one marked by apparent contradictions and hypocrisy.
Maneka, who hails from Pakpattan and has a background as a former customs officer, drew significant public attention following his marriage and eventual divorce from Bushra Riaz Wattoo, later the third wife of Imran Khan. The couple’s split in 2017, followed by Bushra Bibi’s marriage to Khan in 2018, has been a subject of widespread speculation and media interest.
Initially, in the wake of his divorce, Maneka publicly denied any wrongdoing on Imran Khan’s part, going as far as to praise Khan for his noble character. In a video statement released in early 2018, specifically on January 8, he criticised certain media outlets for misleading reports, reiterating his respect for Khan and denying any dispute caused by him in his marital breakdown. Maneka even lauded Bushra as the “most-pious wife in the world,” highlighting his deep respect for both her and Khan.
However, in a stark contrast on November 21, 2023, Maneka accused Khan of ruining his 28-year-long marriage. He claimed Khan engaged in long, private discussions with Bushra at his home and through nightly phone calls, all without his consent. These accusations starkly contrast with his previous descriptions of Khan as a “noble gentleman” and raise questions about his sincerity and the consistency of his statements.
Adding to the complexity, Maneka described instances where he felt compelled to expell Khan from his residence, a far cry from the respect and admiration he once publicly expressed. He also disclosed that Bushra had moved out of their shared home six months prior to their divorce and that there was pressure to manipulate the timing of their divorce to facilitate Bushra’s remarriage.
Maneka’s shift from a stance of respect and denial of any conflict to one of direct accusation and blame not only highlights a significant contradiction in his narrative but also points to a deeper hypocrisy. This is particularly notable given the benefits he reportedly enjoyed under Khan’s government, such as having influence over administrative appointments, obtaining bail in legal cases, and allegedly profiting from his connections.
This flip-flop in his public stance, juxtaposed with the advantages he garnered during Khan’s tenure, paints a picture of a man whose words and actions seem to be swayed more by personal benefit and circumstance than by steadfast principles or loyalty. Maneka’s latest outburst on prime-time television, claiming a need to unburden his heart, appears to be less about seeking truth and more about opportunism.