Tuesday, Dec 23, 2014

Pakistan political drama nears end after army chief intervenes

 Imran Khan and Tahirul Qadri met with army chief Gen Raheel Sharif in Rawalpindi overnight after the PML-N government asked him to play his "role" in ending the political crisis. (Source: AP) Imran Khan and Tahirul Qadri met with army chief Gen Raheel Sharif in Rawalpindi overnight after the PML-N government asked him to play his "role" in ending the political crisis. (Source: AP)
By: Press Trust of India | Islamabad | Posted: August 29, 2014 1:36 pm

quoted as saying by the Dawn.

“It is shameful time for all politicians who, despite having the time, could not resolve the crisis on their own.”

Rightwing Jamaat-e-Islami chief Sirajul Haq had a more cautious response. He told a TV channel that if the army could intercede and end this crisis, well and good, but the military had no role in politics.

Jamiat Ulem-e-Islam-Fazal spokesperson Jan Achakzai had a similar response. “It is a failure of the politicians who could not resolve the crisis. But I welcome any deal that remains within the spirit of democracy and the Constitution.”

Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) leader Syed Khursheed Shah, who is also leader of the opposition in the National Assembly, said he would ask the prime minister why the army chief had to be asked to mediate when nearly all political parties were present in the house and had offered their support to him.

Former Punjab Governor and PPP leader Latif Khosa put the onus of the military’s involvement squarely on the ruling PML-N’s  houlders.

“After killing 14 innocent PAT workers, the Sharif brothers were unwilling even to register their FIR,” he said, adding that the government’s delaying tactics in dealing with PAT and PTI further complicated the situation.

Talking to DawnNews, prominent lawyer and rights activist Asma Jahangir criticised both Qadri and Khan, saying “Those who had wasted 15 days must be discouraged.”

Nearly all parliamentary parties and politicians pleaded with them, but they did not heed anyone’s advice, she said.

“Now, on a single phone call, they rush to Army House.”

She criticised army’s blatant involvement in political affairs and said instead of using their proxies to destabilise the system, why don’t they impose direct military rule.

Secular Awami National Party Haji Adeel said it is wrong to make the military a political guarantor; parliament is the supreme guarantor.

“This is a major failure for all politicians,” he said.

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