ISLAMABAD (News Desk): The Senate chairman will be removed in accordance with the law and the constitution, opposition parties announced after attending an eight-hour-long all parties conference (APC) in Islamabad on Wednesday.
The APC, led by Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman, was aimed at formulating a strategy for a movement against the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government.
Delegations of Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), Awami National Party (ANP), the Aftab Sherpao-led Qaumi Watan Party (QWP), National Party and Pashtunkhwa Milli Awami Party (PkMAP) attended the conference.
Addressing the news conference, Maulana Fazlur Rehman, flanked by PML-N president Shehbaz Sharif and PPP chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari among other opposition politicians, said the meeting has declared the recently pitched budget as “anti-people, anti-traders and anti-industrialists.”
He said the opposition would continue protesting against the financial bill and in and outside the parliament, adding that the opposition parties would also launch public awareness movements in this connection.
“Opposition has unanimously decided to demand issuance of production orders for Waziristan MNAs Ali Wazir and Mohsin Dawar,” said the JUI-F.
He said the meeting also stressed upon the need for legislation on missing persons so that they can be presented before the court. “The meeting rejects ECP’s recommendation of deploying personnel of armed forces inside the polling stations during the upcoming elections in the erstwhile FATA.”
Maulana Fazl said the opposition would oppose all attempts to derail parliamentary form of democratic system in the country. He said the ongoing accountability drive should be across the board and without any discrimination.
The PML-N delegation was led by National Assembly Opposition leader Shehbaz Sharif and included party vice-president Maryam Nawaz Sharif, former prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, Ayaz Sadiq and Ahsan Iqbal.
At the start, former premier Yousuf Raza Gilani, ex-Senate chairman Raza Rabbani, Nayyar Bukhari, Sherry Rehman and Farhatullah Babar represented the PPP. The party’s chairman, Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, arrived at the event later.
Meanwhile, the opposition’s aspirations were dealt a blow hours before the meeting started, as the Balochistan National Party-Mengal (BNP-M), an important coalition member of the ruling PTI, decided against attending the event.
Reports suggested that BNP-M chief Akhtar Mengal took the decision after being invited for a meeting with Prime Minister Imran Khan on Wednesday afternoon.
Another major party missing from the meeting is the Jamaat-e-Islami (JI), whose chief Sirajul Haq earlier turned down a personal invitation by Maulana Fazl.
The APC’s agenda included chalking out a strategy to prevent the government from having the budget for the new fiscal year passed in its present form.