Opposition leader Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf party has agreed to hold talks with the PML-N government after months of stand-off between the two sides over allegations of mass rigging in last year’s polls.
The two sides have agreed to resume formal talks from Sunday after they were suspended in August end and the points discussed in the meeting would not be made public.
“Both sides have decided that the content of their meetings will not be made public, to discourage speculation,” said Minister for Planning and Development Ahsan Iqbal, who is a member of the government team.
He said that government was sincere in resolving the four month-long crisis through talks and asked Khan to cool political temperatures and avoid making fiery speeches.
The minister said that the government had no objection to the two demands presented by the PTI with regard to the investigation into alleged rigging during the elections of 2013 and reforms of electoral rules.
“The government is ready to investigate whether there was systematic rigging in the elections. The PTI’s second demand is related to electoral reforms, which are also being demanded by nearly all other political parties to ensure the system is fair and transparent,” he said.
He said there was no deadlock on PTI’s demand about an ordinance making the commission’s report binding on the government, the Dawn reported.
He said dialogue had resumed in a cordial atmosphere and Finance Minister Ishaq Dar and PTI Vice Chairman Shah Mehmood Qureshi will head their teams. Khan has been agitating since mid-August outside the parliament with his supporters, demanding Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s ouster.
One person was killed earlier this week during violent clashes between workers of PTI and ruling Pakistan Muslim League (N) in Faisalabad city.
Khan has threatened to impose phased shut-down in Pakistan by December 18 if his demands were not accepted.