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ISLAMABAD: Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) senior leader and former prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani Saturday asked Prime Minister Imran Khan to accept his defeat and tender resignation by avoiding chaos through agitation.

Speaking at a news conference, Gilani said that the joint opposition has a clear majority of more than 172 members in the National Assembly and urged the prime minister to show sportsman spirit and resign.

He said that after tabling of the no-confidence motion which was done on March 8, the prime minister cannot dissolve the assemblies. However, he added that the next government would call bye-elections, if the members of the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) give en masse resignations.

Gilani also asked Prime Minister Khan to avoid confrontation by inviting his party workers for agitation, adding that the no-confidence move is a constitutional process and “let it be decided within the Parliament”.

Talking about the prime minister’s narrative about the no-confidence motion being a “foreign conspiracy”, Gilani said that “this is an effort to divert attention from his obvious defeat”.

He pointed out that it was inappropriate to level allegations against his former coalition partners who have now joined hands with the opposition.

He also asked the prime minister to avoid tirade against Western countries who have good relations with Pakistan, adding that the whole world is dependent on each other. He added that the European Union supported Pakistan in GSP plus and other countries extended support to Pakistan on many occasions.

Speaking separately in a joint news conference, PPP leaders including Raja Pervez Ashraf, Nayyar Hussain Bukhari, and Faisal Karim Kundi strongly criticised the “irresponsible” statements by the prime minster and his ministers.

They alleged that the prime minister and his ministers have become a “security threat” to the country, adding that relevant institutions should take notice of these statements.

Bukhari held the prime minister and the ministers are responsible for the current situation, adding that his Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid wanted to take the country towards “anarchy” through his “irresponsible” statements. He said that the interior minister’s statements are against the Constitution.

He said that the Parliament has its rules clearly written in Article 5 of the Constitution, which is equally binding on the president, the speaker, and the ministers.

Raja Pervez Ashraf said that the country’s politics has reached a “defining moment”, adding that the people have to make decision as no society survives without the rule of law.

He said that the prime minister need to respect the Constitution and the law, adding that the alleged efforts by the government to create hurdles in the voting process on the no-confidence motion are regrettable.

He said that the transition should take place smoothly, adding that the joint opposition has already produced its majority in the house and it will be further obvious when the motion is placed for voting today (Sunday).

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022


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