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ISLAMABAD: Law Minister Azam Nazeer Tarar on Thursday said the government is ready to hold political dialogue with Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan if he shows a willingness to lower political temperature.

Criticizing the PTI leadership, he said PTI did not try to mend relations with the opposition during the four-year tenure of the PTI.

Talking about the grand dialogue, he said, “Imran Khan should send two people from his side while two people from the coalition government will sit together to discuss things.” Law Minister called for a grand national dialogue among all stakeholders, including politicians, to bring down political heat and hold simultaneous elections for national and provincial assemblies.

He said Pakistan is facing serious economic and security challenges as well as political I stability, which require unanimous views among all the stakeholders, especially the political parties.

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He said the coalition government believes in democracy and democratic process should continue. “We should refrain from paving way for any undemocratic third option,” he said.

Commenting on the elections dilemma, the federal minister said that the simultaneous election for the national and four provincial assemblies is the only viable option to bring political and economic stability to the country.

Tarar, while endorsing the Election Commission of Pakistan’s (ECP) decision to postpone the date for general elections in Punjab from April 30 to October 8 — said that the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) made the “right move” by withdrawing the election schedule.

Supporting the ECP’s decision, the law minister mentioned that Article 254 of the Constitution provides that when any act or thing is required by the Constitution to be done within a particular period and it is not done within that period, the doing of the act or thing shall not be invalid or otherwise ineffective by reason only that it was not done within that period.

The minister further added that a digital census is underway in the country and its findings will also be compiled in the next few weeks.

He said this will address the concerns of the smaller provinces and provide a basis for delimitations of constituencies across Pakistan.

Talking about security he said the country was also facing security challenges on multiple fronts and holding elections requires the massive deployment of law enforcement agencies, which was not possible at this point in time.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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