- Interior minister says govt is not sending police to Sindh House
Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid said on Thursday that he has advised Prime Minister Imran Khan to impose Governor's rule in Sindh, a statement that comes as tensions rise in Islamabad ahead of the opposition's planned no-confidence motion against the premier.
"We are not sending police to Sindh House because they (dissident PTI lawmakers) went there due to their greed for money," he said while talking to the media in Islamabad, referring to the group of MNAs that have been present at the Sindh House.
He also accused the Sindh government of "buying and selling" lawmakers' votes, terming the practice a "conspiracy against democracy".
The interior minister also said the session of the National Assembly could be called on March 21.
Earlier on Thursday, a member of the National Assembly (MNA) from ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Noor Alam Khan, who is staying at the Sindh House, Islamabad, said that he was concerned about his security and asked the Sindh government for protection.
Speaking exclusively with Aaj News at the Sindh House premises, Noor said that he had moved from Parliament Lodges after the police action against the Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam Fazl (JUI-F) lawmakers last week.
A number of other dissident MNAs from the ruling PTI have also come out in the open with Raja Riaz and Malik Nawab Sher Waseer saying they would vote on the no-confidence motion against Prime Minister Imran Khan in "accordance with their conscience."
As tensions rise, Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Co-Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari said that his party and the Pakistan Democratic Party (PDM) will protect MNAs who are being threatened with violence and arrest if they take part in the no-confidence process against the prime minister.
In a tweet, the PPP leader said that the lives, liberty, and families of MNAs are under threat.
"MNAs will take any and all means for their own protection against this fascist regime," he said.
Govt will not take any unconstitutional step: Asad Umar
Meanwhile, Federal Minister for Planning, Development, and Special Initiatives Asad Umar also said on Thursday that the government will not take any unconstitutional measure to block the opposition’s no-confidence motion against Prime Minister Imran Khan.
He was addressing a joint presser along with Energy Minister Hammad Azhar, and Federal Minister for Information, Fawad Chaudhry in Islamabad.
Umar said that PM Imran will continue to stand by his principles. "Imran Khan neither blackmails anyone nor does he gets blackmailed like other political leaders,” he stressed.
His remarks come after reports emerged that the government was planning to raid the Sindh House after it was revealed that over a dozen of the ruling PTI dissident MNAs were staying there.
Azhar said that if PM Imran wished he could have bought half of the opposition’s MNAs and beat the opposition at its own game, adding that the premier doesn't "believe in dirty politics."
“The activities in Sindh House are not of conscience, but open horse-trading,” he said.
Azhar called on masses to come out in numbers to support PM Imran, who he said, was "standing firm against the morally corrupt politicians."
Meanwhile, Fawad, in his remarks, said that the dissident MNAs had to come out in the open after the government announced to take action against them.