- Info minister says govt has responded positively to ‘PTI’s demands for recounting in 10 constituencies conveyed through JI chief’
Minister for Information and Broadcasting Senator Pervaiz Rashid has expressed confidence that Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan would respond with the same spirit to the flexibility being demonstrated by Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) on the issue of recounting in constituencies.
While talking to journalists after attending the National Security Conference on Saturday, the minister said that by agreeing to the demand of the PTI leader, the PML-N was foregoing its constitutional, legal and moral rights on the issue and giving “sacrifice”. He hoped that the PTI would demonstrate the same spirit and allow people of Pakistan to celebrate Independence Day with joy and peace of mind.
The minister pointed out that originally, the PTI leader demanded recounting in four constituencies. Of them, election against Jehangir Tareen was not won by PML-N but an independent candidate, and PML-N candidate was on third position in the counting tally. In two of the three remaining constituencies, the election tribunals had already ordered recounting as demanded by PTI and both parties had gone in appeal to the high court.
The minister said PTI has now increased its demand to 10. He said the demand was conveyed through Jamaat-e-Islami leader Sirajul Haq and the government did not delay its response beyond informing other political leaders about it.
Asked whether the government would allow Khan to hold a rally and sit-in on Independence Day in Islamabad, the minister said that so far, PTI had not approached the Islamabad administration. He said it was the responsibility of PTI leadership to inform the administration about the day, timing and venue of the sit-in so that security arrangements are made.
Replying to a question whether the government would display the same flexibility vis-a-vis Pakistan Awami Tehreek, the senator said that if Qadri retracted from his provocative statements amounting to inciting his workers on violence, the government would reciprocate. He rejected reports that any PAT worker was killed in clashes with police anywhere in Punjab and described the reports as “propaganda”.
The senator also rejected Khan’s allegation that the prime minister has politicised the conference. The minister said the decision about holding of the conference was taken much before and it was decided that it would he held after the return of the army chief from Australia.