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ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, Wednesday, in a telephonic discussion with Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman and Balochistan National Party (BNP) leader Sardar Akhtar Mengal has assured them of addressing their reservations over the recent legislation on RekoDiq issue.

According to BNP and Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam Pakistan (JUI) officials, the PM contacted both leaders and assured them the government will take the allies into confidence on all national matters.

In his talk with Akhtar Mengal on phone, Shehbaz discussed a string of issues including the overall political situation prevailing in the country. Mengal conveyed to the PM his party’s reservations about the Riko Diq agreement. Shehbaz assured the BNP leader of removing his doubts about the Reko Diq legislation.

The prime minister also contacted Maulana Fazl and discussed the issue of Reko Diq and also informed him about the committee constituted in connection with the issue.

It may be mentioned here that the federal cabinet had on Tuesday given its nod to the Reqo Diq project amid a walkout staged by Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) and Balochistan National Party-Mengal (BNP-M) members.

The JUI and BNP members, key allies in the coalition government, recorded their protest in the cabinet meeting and then walked out. Both parties had expressed their reservations for not taking them into confidence over the legislation regarding the Reko Diq agreement.

The government admitted that the reservations of both parties are valid and amendments will be added soon. However, the JUI and the BNP decided to boycott cabinet meetings until the amendments presented by them are incorporated into the bill and left the Prime Minister’s House.

Meanwhile, BNP chief Sardar Akhtar Mengal had chaired a meeting of the BNP senior leaders and discussed the current political situation in the country. The meeting seriously considered the option of leaving the coalition government while senior leaders gave their suggestions on the alliance to the government.

While the party already has called a special meeting of the central executive committee Thursday (today) to further deliberate on the matters. The party chief made the final decision on the alliance with the government subject to the decision of the core committee meeting, sources said.

On the other hand, the sources said the PM had constituted a committee to hold negotiations with the coalition partners and allay their reservations.

The PM had nominated Federal Law Ministers Azam Nazir Tarar and Ayaz Sadiq to hold talks with the disgruntled leaders of both parties and take them into confidence.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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