By Abdullah Zahid
Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) throws January 31st as a deadline to Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government and asks for the dissolution of the assemblies. The senior leadership signed a document titled the Lahore Declaration.
The development comes a day after the PDM held a massive rally in Lahore.
“Today, we want to make it clear: The government should resign till January 31. If it does not, then the [PDM leadership] will announce a long-march on February 1,” said JUI-F chief Maulana Fazl Rehamna flanked by PML-N vice-president Maryam Nawaz and PPP chairman Bilawal Bhutto.
However, Fazl said that the final date for the long-march, despite the February 1 announcement, said that a date for it would be finalised later.
“All party workers in PDM and the people of Pakistan are appealed to start preparations for the long march from today,” Rehman added.
He said following Sunday’s “historic” PDM public gathering at the Minar-i-Pakistan in Lahore, PDM leaders had today signed a detailed communique in continuation of the opposition’s objectives.
The Pakistan Daily (TPD) Investigations Desk has received a copy of the agreement.
PDM leaders today condemned ISPR exerting pressure on media to manipulate coverage of its Jalsa in Lahore on Sunday, says MFR.
Meanwhile, PML-N’s Maryam stated that it was a “matter of concern” that certain channels were airing news that was completely baseless.
The PML-N vice-president, claiming that she was disappointed at her party leadership for keeping the venue small, said that the people had to listen to the PDM leaders from outside the ground.
“I have not seen such a jalsa in my life, that despite such cold weather, even chairs were not visible […] People were standing and hearing the party leaders,” she said.
“I have never seen such a jalsa where people had participated with such enthusiasm,” Maryam said, adding: “Despite government’s tactics [the audience was huge].”
She added that some channels had started “propaganda” against the opposition before she had even left for the venue. “Our media didn’t show the truth but foreign media, such as BBC and Al Jazeera, have shown a mirror to certain elements of our media.”
Moreover, Bilawal, responding to a question, said that the 11 parties were on the same and that the decision would be made through consultations.
Bilawal reiterated that the time for dialogue was over and now it’s time for a long march and Imran Khan’s resignation. “The senior party leaders have their own opinions, but once the party makes a decision, they abide by it.”
He said that he had submitted an application for a meeting with PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif in a jail in Lahore. He said he was waiting for official permission to meet Shehbaz. He said he wanted to offer his condolences to Shehbaz over the sad demise of his mother. He said it was a tradition; he offered his condolences to Maryam Nawaz a few days ago and now he wanted to offer his condolences to Shehbaz.
The top leadership of the PDM met at Jati Umrah, Raiwind to decide what’s next for the Opposition’s anti-government campaign. JUI-F chief Fazl chaired the meeting that had started at around 2pm.
Meanwhile, according to the agreement that the 11-party alliance has signed, the PDM has pledged to work together for the guaranteeing political, economic, and social rights of the people of Pakistan.
“[The PDM wants to] create a Pakistan where the sanctity of the Constitution takes precedence, all administrative bodies of the state are subject to an elected administration and parliament, which is the source of national policymaking,” the agreement said.
The agreement aspired for an independent judiciary, freedom of expression of the media, accountability for all the elected bodies, and for the people to have the right to elect and dismiss their representatives.