Islamabad, 20 Sept. 2020 (Misc. Media Reports)
‘Pakistan Democratic Movement’, an alliance of opposition parties in Pakistan including main stream parties Pakistan Muslim League (PMLN) and Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) has demanded immediate resignation of Prime Minister Imran Khan and holding of free and fair elections in the country, He said that a failure to do so will result in the joint opposition announcing country-wide protests that will include the participation of lawyers, traders, labourers, farmers, civil society, and the people in general.
“In the first phase, beginning October, rallies will be held in Sindh, Balochistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, and Punjab.
“In the second phase, starting December, huge demonstrations will take country-wide.
In the third phase, to begin in January next year, a long-march will move towards Islamabad,” Fazl said.
“To oust the selected government, the joint opposition will use all tactics, including a vote of no confidence and resignations from the parliament.”
All Parties Conference (APC) was held this morning in Islamabad was addressed by three times elected former Prime Minister Mohammad Nawaz Sharif; former President of Pakistan, Asif Ali Zardari; PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif; PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and other leaders.
The conference was held to devise a joint strategy to oust Prime Minister Imran Khan’s government since responsible for prevailing crisis in country, weak economy as threat for the country’s survival and sovereignty.
Maulana Fazlur Rehman, Chief of Jamiat Ulema Islam (JUI) at the end of the APC, announced 26 points charter of demands on Sunday night at a press conference.
The joint declaration named the opposition alliance as “Pakistan Democratic Movement”, which will organise countrywide protest to get rid of incumbent government.
It has also rejected any attempt to introduce presidential form of government in the country and pledged to strengthen parliamentary system of the country.
He also called upon the government to lower the prices of essential commodities and provide relief to the masses.
APC demanded immediate release of all political prisoners and journalists, as APC feels are detained on fake charges.
The resolution also claimed that “incompetent rulers” have jeopardised the multi-billion dollar CPEC initiative and slowed down the speed of its projects.
It has also expressed concern over the rising incident of terrorism, blaming the government for not implementing on National Action Plan (NAP), which was formulated following the deadly APS attack in 2014.
The joint statement also called upon the authorities to ensure transparent elections in Gilgit-Baltistan.
Three times elected former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif through video link from UK in his video address said that “Our foremost priority should be removing this selected government and this system, Our struggle is not (only) against Imran Khan’.
The speech marked the deposed prime minister’s political comeback after more than a year. He has been in the UK since November last year for medical treatment.
He thanked former president and PPP Co-Chairperson Asif Ali Zardari and all the opposition leaders for providing him with an opportunity to address people of his country. He said that although, he is living outside the country, but was well aware of the circumstances and hardships country is going through.
“I perceive this conference as a turning point for the country where we can make major decisions for the country with bravery,” Nawaz said, adding that it was an opportunity to make important decisions as those pinning hopes to them would otherwise be disappointed.
“I am speaking from my experience of serving this country; the soul of democracy is when people are allowed to bring their opinions forward. According to the law, our democratic system relies on the opinions and say of the people.
He said “The democratic systems around the world follow the same principle. When public votes are not respected and the verdict is decided even before the elections, then we can guess how the people of this country are deceived and dodged.
“Unfortunately, Pakistan has been the laboratory for such experiments. It’s not even taken into account that the democratic structure of the country is demolished due to such tactics and the public loses faith in the system.
“During the 73-long history of Pakistan, everybody knows that no democratic leader could complete their tenure in the country whereas the dictators ruled the country and completed their tenure,” the PML-N supremo underlined.
“The people who followed the laws were put in jail. It is not a new thing in Pakistan that dictators are always set free and are not held accountable for whatever they do,” Nawaz said, referring to the former military ruler Pervez Musharraf.
The PML-N founder also said the “root cause” of Pakistan’s problems was a “state above the state” kind of a situation in the country. Reiterating the opposition’s claims of elections not being fair, he said the PTI regime “would not have come to power in the first place had these elections were not rigged”.
“Rigging elections is unconstitutional and robbery of people’s rights. It is a serious crime. I want to ask a question today. Why RTS (Result Transmission System) was shut for hours during the election.
“The former chief election commissioner and secretary will have to answer all these questions.”
Commenting on the foreign policy, the former premier maintained that country’s “good reputation in the international community is ruined because of the current policies and incapable regime”.
“It is because of this puppet government that India annexed Kashmir,” Nawaz said. “Why is the world not ready to listen to us today?
“Why are we alone,” he asked, adding that Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi made statements that disappointed Saudi Arabia. “We must strengthen the OIC,” Nawaz asserted, referring to the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation.
The PML-N leader also lambasted the PTI government over the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), saying the multi-billion dollar project backed by China was being treated like BRT Peshawar.
Maintaining that it was imperative to scrutinise the role of National Accountability Bureau (NAB), the former premier said the watchdog’s boss, Justice (r) Javed Iqbal was caught misusing his position but no action was taken against him.
“Soon, a day will come when everyone would be held accountable.”
“Imran Khan himself is involved in increasing the price of sugar in the country,” the PLM-N supremo alleged. “Will the NAB arrest him,” Nawaz asked.
He said ‘Pakistan has become a laboratory of such experiments,’ while adding that Every child knows that no prime minister has been allowed to complete five years in power.
In his concluding remarks, he said that “We have to decide that we are one and if the APC is succeeded in doing so, then this conference is successful.”
Former President of Pakistan, Asif Ali Zardari criticised the government over what he called were tactics to suppress the opposition and media.
JUI Chief, Maulana Fazal U Rahman addressing at a press conference after APC announcing the 26 points joint communique said that PTI-led government is involved in the abrogation of special status of Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK). “This government has also failed to formulate an Aghan policy,” he added.
PMLN President, Shehbaz Sharif said that the opposition had no option but to arrive at these decisions as the incumbent government was “selected” and could not handle the country’s affairs, including the situation in Kashmir and the coronavirus crisis.
“The country’s future is at stake if the government continues its regime,” he said.
PPP chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari said that the opposition is headed towards its “mission” under the guidance and support of the PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif and PPP chairman Asif Zardari.
He stressed on the need for multiparty conference to come up with a proper plan of action for gaining freedom for the people. He demanded that the opposition be given a level-playing field not only in politics and media but in parliament as well.
He urged the opposition to unite and launch a movement similar to the Movement for the Restoration of Democracy (MRD) in the past. “We are standing with the decision this forum takes and are willing to fight till our last breath,” he said.
The PPP chairman said the leader of the movement has not yet been decided. He said that the movement would struggle not only against the government but also “the ones who brought it into power”.