Thursday, March 4, 2021

Government not interested to hold talks with PDM, clarifies Pervez Khattak

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Pervez Khattak, Defence Minister and a senior leader of the ruling party, said on Thursday that the federal government had neither contacted the Pakistan Democratic Movement nor intended to reach out to the opposition’s alliance for dialogue to defuse political tensions in the country.

Talking to reporters during his visit to the TransPeshawar headquarters, Mr Khattak said the government wouldn’t back off from its commitment to accountability.

Accompanied by Speaker of the National Assembly Asad Qaiser and state minister for parliamentary affairs Ali Mohammad Khan, the minister said the ruling party had enough numbers to win majority in Senate elections.

He also ruled out the candidature of Jahangir Khan Tareen for Senate seat. “Tareen is nowhere to be seen in the Senate polls,” he said.

There is a dominant view that the PDM is no longer a serious threat to the government. In a program, Think Tank, prominent analyst Ayaz Amir has said that the PDM is no longer a serious threat to the government. “They [PDM] do not understand a few things. For example, PDM is not focusing on the common Pakistanis’ issues like inflation and sugar crisis,” he said.

Professor Hassan Askari Rizvi also agreed with Amir and maintained that “PDM should know that the governments cannot be toppled like this”. Prof. Rizvi also noted that the PDM has never been clear about its agenda. “Earlier they attacked Army and the Judiciary, now ECP is being targeted,” he explained.

There have been some rumors suggesting a possible deal between the PDM and Pakistan’s all-powerful military establishment.

Notably, on the eve of November 30, Muhammad Malick, a prominent Pakistani journalist, revealed that “the top army brass is under no internal pressure to create space for opposition parties”. While speaking to Nasim Zehra on channel 24, Malick maintained that the narrative projected by Nawaz Sharif and Maulana Fazalur Rehman won’t be of any use in the long run. “To be fair, this narrative can create some excitement but it is not sustainable,” he said.

PDM has been seen carrying an anti-establishment narrative since its creations. Nawaz Sharif named the Army Chief and DG ISI for political engineering in the country. “General Bajwa is responsible for installing incompetent Imran Khan,” he said while addressing PDM rally from London.

Read More: Does the government really want to bring Nawaz Sharif back to Pakistan?

Sources claim that the establishment now seems to be ready for talks, albeit its reluctance to give NRO to the Sharif family, to end the prevailing political insecurity. “The establishment cannot remove Prime Minister Imran Khan from the office for its own sake but there are some concessions to be given to PML-N, PPP and JUI-F,”  a reliable source told GVS. However, it is yet to be seen if Prime Minister Imran Khan shall accept any such deal or not.

No NRO for corrupt leaders, Imran Khan

Prime Minister Imran Khan termed the Pakistan Democratic Movement rally held on Sunday “pathetic” and reiterated his long-sworn vow that he will “never give an NRO”. “Pathetic. PDM spent so much money, time, effort and displayed utter callousness by endangering people’s lives during COVID-19 spike,” he wrote.

He said that by holding the rally the Opposition parties showed “scant regard” for the safety of citizens and their well-being. “All this just to blackmail me into giving them an NRO to save their looted wealth,” the prime minister said.

Read More: Fawad Ch calls for probe into Nawaz Sharif medical test reports

He followed by saying: “Let me once again reiterate: I will never give an NRO.” “Whatever future plans of further blackmail PDM may have, my message is categorical: There will never be an NRO from my government no matter what tactics the looters devise,” the premier added.

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