ISLAMABAD: Railways Minister Khawaja Saad Rafique on Thursday urged both Imran Khan and Tahirul Qadri not to hold parliament hostage and allow the state institutions to work smoothly.
Speaking to media outside the Parliament House, Saad reaffirmed the government’s seriousness to resolve the crisis through negotiations. He was flanked by Defence Minister Khawaja Asif, Information Minister Pervez Rasheed and Science and Technology Minister Zahid Hamid.
About demands of PTI Chairman Imran Khan, the minister said that the government accepted five demands of the PTI but Kaptaan was not withdrawing his demand about the prime minister’s resignation.
About Qadri’s demands, he said that the government has decided not to appeal against the Lahore High Court’s judgment to register an FIR against the PM and other cabinet members.
He said the government has decided to register an FIR in the Model Town tragedy in accordance with the sessions court orders. The minister appealed to Qadri not to instigate his supporters as the country could not afford confrontation.
Saad also urged both parties to resolve the issues through parliament and added that the two protesting leaders broke their promises of not entering the Red Zone, but the government will demonstrate restraint.
Defence Minister Khawaja Asif said the government has shown restraint and was still demonstrating patience and tolerance. There were reports that the PAT planned clashes, but the government was committed to avoiding any clash.
Asif accused the protesting parties of stealing electricity, but the government has not taken any action on this pilferage as well. He denounced the demands of protesting parties and said a few thousand people could not dictate parliament.
“Both Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf and Pakistan Awami Tehreek want clash in Islamabad but the government will not take any step which may cause bloodshed”, Asif said while talking to media outside the Parliament House. The government would make all out efforts to avoid any bloodshed so that the protesting parties may not play politics on dead bodies, the defence minister said.
Asif said that the government would not accept any demand against the country’s constitution.
* Nawaz says his vision for region is of a ‘dispute-free South Asia’ ...