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PTI to go for big quit from NA



ISLAMABAD:

The PTI on Sunday decided to resign en masse from the National Assembly in protest against the nomination of PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif for the slot of the prime minister, a day after its chairman Imran Khan was ousted from premiership by the united opposition through a no-confidence motion.

However, not all PTI members have decided to call it quits as the party’s dissident members have announced that there was no chance of them resigning from the lower house of parliament.

The total number of disgruntled members is 20 so far out of the total 156 MNAs of the party in the assembly.
Speaking to journalists, former federal information minister Fawad Chaudhry said PTI chief Imran had chaired a meeting of the party’s core committee at his Bani Gala residence where he reiterated that his ouster was part of a “regime-change operation backed by foreign powers”.

Fawad, who was accompanied by former energy minister Hammad Azhar and ex-state minister for information Farrukh Habib, added that the decision about leaving the National Assembly instead of sitting on the opposition benches was the first step.

“The decision about [resigning from] provincial assemblies will be taken later on.”

Fawad said the PTI was fielding former foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi as the candidate for the premiership against Shehbaz to challenge the latter’s nomination papers among other reasons.

Read Shehbaz Sharif submits nomination papers for PM’s post

He added that it was a pity that Shehbaz would be contesting the election for the country’s prime minister on the day when the date was fixed for his indictment in a money laundering case worth Rs16 billion.

“What could be more insulting for Pakistan than imposing a ‘foreign-selected government’ on Pakistan and make a person like Shehbaz Sharif its head,” he lamented.

Fawad disclosed that the core committee had recommended to the former premier that the PTI should quit, starting from the National Assembly, if the nomination of Shehbaz was accepted.

It later emerged that the nomination papers were accepted by the assembly secretariat after their scrutiny.
The former minister maintained that most of the members had already submitted their resignations to the party leadership and the rest would follow them soon.

Calling the ouster of ex-PM Imran via a no-trust motion a “slap on the face of the nation”, Fawad said: “We reject it; the whole nation expects leadership from Imran Khan and expects from the PTI that it will come out on streets [against] this foreign conspiracy.”

The former minister added that it would be “deceiving” politics and the Constitution if Imran did not lead a movement rejecting the “illegal government”.

The former government spokesperson hoped that people would stand by PTI in this movement starting from Sunday night’s rally.

“I am hoping that we would be moving toward fresh elections within months or weeks,” he said. “There is no solution to the ongoing crisis except fresh polls.”

 

Without naming anyone, Fawad said that whoever had created political turmoil in the country committed enmity with the State, adding that matters had become more complicated because of the Supreme Court’s decision.

On April 7, the top court set aside NA deputy speaker Qasim Suri’s decision of rejecting the opposition’s no-trust motion against former PM Imran Khan invoking Article 5 of the Constitution — a decision through which the government’s rivals were labelled as “traitors”.

Criticising the judiciary, Fawad said that opening up of the Supreme Court and the Islamabad High Court late in the night was disliked by masses and they were expressing displeasure on social media about it as well.

The former minister said the PTI had decided to launch a movement led by Imran, saying no institution would have any sanctity until the “impure” government was thrown out from the power corridors of the capital.

Former state minister for information Farrukh Habib also criticised the country’s judiciary for opening the doors of courts on late Saturday night. He wondered if the courts would also hear corruption cases during late night hearings and provide justice in the Model Town case in such proceedings.

Habib added that the PTI chief would start public rallies from Peshawar in the next few days to protest against the “imported government”.

Speaking on the occasion, Azhar claimed that there was not a single leader of Imran’s stature but he was ousted through a foreign conspiracy.

“Sadly, the country has been pushed back to slavery once again after it achieved independence,” he maintained.

He added that an independent country was made a slave on Saturday, saying it would be liberated again soon.

To a question about political and economic instability, Fawad blamed the top court, saying there would have been stability in the country had it been pushed toward fresh elections instead of imposing the decision to set aside Suri’s ruling.

On the “trolling” of Chief Justice of Pakistan Umar Ata Bandial allegedly by PTI supporters on social media, Fawad refuted the claim and distanced the party from such elements.

“The party has no control over social media and people are expressing opinions on their own.”



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