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Establishment mulling ‘soft intervention’ amid deepening political, economic crisis: sources

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  • Establishment mulling intervention as country’s economic situation deteriorates.
  • Next general elections in Pakistan can take place in October.
  • PTI Chairman Imran Khan is ready for negotiations with government.

ISLAMABAD: The establishment is considering a “soft intervention” under which it may mediate between PTI Chairman Imran Khan and the coalition parties — comprising PML-N, PPP, JUI-F, and others — sources told The News Saturday, as political and economic crises grip Pakistan.

The sources told the publication that there are chances of a “grand dialogue” between the Opposition and the government with the intervention of the establishment.

The development comes as the Pakistani rupee continues its downward trend against the US dollar and the Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) also witnessing constant plunges in recent sessions — both markets recording historic lows.

Not only this, but there has also been persistent political instability since Khan’s ouster from power, including a fight for the Punjab throne resulting in the province being left without a chief minister for nearly four months. Hamza Shahbaz took oath twice as chief minister in this period but with his appointment challenged time and again in the courts, the matter has now gone to him being appointed a trustee chief minister until Monday.

The situation has given way to the likelihood for the next general elections to take place soon, with the sources putting the time frame at October.

‘Khan ready for negotiations’

Senior journalist Suhail Warraich told Geo News that he met the ousted prime minister and that “Khan is ready for negotiations” with the coalition government on three issues: elections and election reforms, the economic agenda and the appointment of the army chief.

The journalist said that there are chances that Khan will write a letter to President Arif Alvi and he might help in holding negotiations between the PTI and the government.

“Everyone believes that the political parties should resolve their issues amicably,” the journalist said.

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‘We are asking you politely to appoint AGP,’ SC to govt

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  • SC expresses displeasure over delay in AGP’s appointment. 
  • Justice Isa calls govt “incompetent”. 
  • Says govt violating Constitution by not appointing AGP.

The Supreme Court on Monday, while fuming over the delay in the attorney general of Pakistan’s (AGP) appointment, told the federal government to fill the constitutional post. 

Justice Qazi Faez Isa gave remarks on the lack of assistance from the attorney general in a case related to tampered car. 

“We are asking you politely to appoint the attorney general,” Justice Isa told the government during the hearing.

“Who is the attorney general in the country right now?” questioned Justice Isa. 

At this, the deputy attorney general failed to give a satisfying answer. 

“The government is so incompetent that it cannot even appoint an attorney general,” said the Supreme Court justice. 

He questioned whether the government is bargaining with someone over the AGP’s appointment. 

“The Supreme Court has 5,500 lawyers but the government cannot find a single one,” he added. 

Justice Isa said that the government is violating the Constitution by not appointing the AGP, adding that the orders given by the apex court were not followed either. 

The court said that the additional attorney general and the deputy attorney general are bound to take instructions from the AGP only. 

“It is against the law for the deputy and additional attorney general to appear without instructions of the AGP,” the court added.

‘AGP to be finalised in 2-3 days’

On January 21, Federal Law Minister Senator Azam Nazeer Tarar said that the new attorney general will be finalized within two or three days. 

The judiciary had expressed displeasure with the government for not appointing the AGP after former attorney general Ashtar Ausaf Ali tendered his resignation in October last year due to health reasons.

President Dr Arif Alvi approved the appointment of Mansoor Usman Awan, who is a Supreme Court lawyer, as the AGP on December 23 after accepting Ausaf’s resignation. However, he refused from taking charge.

“I am going to meet PM Shehbaz today (Saturday) and possibly the issue of appointing the new attorney general will be finalised within two or three days,” Tarar said.

He revealed that first Awan consented to be the attorney general but later he verbally and in writing refused to accept the office, citing his professional engagements.

“I can’t disclose the names of the new potential candidates, being nominated for the slot of attorney general but hopefully the prime minister will finalize the name within two to three days,” he told The News.

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Here’s the list of PTI MNAs whose resignations have been accepted so far

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National Assembly Speaker Raja Pervaiz Ashraf on Friday accepted the resignations of 35 Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) MNAs taking the total number of resignations accepted in the last eight months to 81.

The National Assembly Secretariat, in a statement issued in this regard, mentioned that the resignations have been approved under Clause (1) of Article 64 of the Constitution of Pakistan. 

Following the approval of the resignations, the summary was sent to the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to de-notify the PTI lawmakers.

Here’s a list of all 35 MNAs whose resignations were accepted today:

  • Dr Haider Ali Khan — NA-2
  • Saleem Rehman — NA-3
  • Sahibzada Sibghatullah — NA-5
  • Mehboob Shah — NA-6
  • Muhammad Bashir Khan — NA-7
  • Junaid Akbar — NA-8
  • Sher Akbar Khan —NA-9
  • Ali Khan Jadoon —NA-16
  • Engr Usman Khan Tarakai — NA-19
  • Mujahid Ali — NA-20
  • Arbab Amir Ayub — NA-28
  • Sher Ali Arbab — NA-30
  • Shahid Ahmed — NA-34
  • Gul Dad Khan — NA-40
  • Sajid Khan — NA-42
  • Mohammad Iqbal Khan — NA-44
  • Aamer Mehmood Kiani — NA-61
  • Syed Faiz ul Hassan — NA-70
  • Ch Shoukat Ali Bhatti — NA-87
  • Umar Aslam Khan — NA-93
  • Amjad Ali Khan — NA-96
  • Khurram Shahzad — NA-107
  • Faizullah — NA-109
  • Malik Karamat Ali Khokhar — NA-135
  • Syed Fakhar Imam — NA-150
  • Zahoor Hussain Qureshi — NA-152
  • Ibraheem Khan — NA-158
  • Tahir Iqbal — NA-164
  • Aurangzeb Khan Khichi — NA-165
  • Makhdoom Khusro Bakhtiar — NA-177
  • Abdul Majeed Khan — NA-187

Reserve Seats

  • Andaleeb Abbas — RS-Women
  • Asma Qadeer — RS-Women
  • Maleeka Ali Bokhari — RS-Women
  • Munawara Bibi Baloch — RS-Women

The NA speaker accepted 70 resignations this week, as he approved the resignations of 35 lawmakers earlier this week. 

Here’s a list of all those 35 MNAs de-notified by the ECP:

  • Murad Saeed — NA-04 Swat-III
  • Omar Ayub Khan — NA-17 Haripur-I
  • Asad Qaiser — NA-18 Swabi-I
  • Pervaiz Khattak — NA-25 Nowshera-I
  • Imran Khattak — NA-26 Nowshera-II
  • Sheharyar Afridi — NA-32 Kohat
  • Ali Amin Khan — NA-38 Dera Ismail Khan-I
  • Noor-ul-Haq Qadri — NA-43 Khyber Agency Tribal Area-IV
  • Raja Khurram Shahzad Nawaz — NA-52 ICT-I
  • Ali Nawaz Awan — NA-53 ICT-II
  • Asad Umar — NA-54 ICT-III
  • Sadaqat Ali Khan — NA-57 Rawalpindi-I
  • Ghulam Sarwar Khan — NA-59 Rawalpindi-III
  • Sheikh Rashid Shafique — NA-60 Rawalpindi-IV
  • Sheikh Rashid Ahmed — NA-62 Rawalpindi-VI
  • Mansoor Hayat Khan — NA-63 Rawalpindi-VIII
  • Fawad Ahmed — NA-67 Jehlum II
  • M. Sanaullah Khan Mastikhel — NA-97 Bhakkar-II
  • Muhammad Hammad Azhar — NA-126 Lahore IV
  • Shafqat Mahmood Khan — NA-126 Lahore VIII
  • Malik Muhammad Amir Dogar — NA-155 Multan-II
  • Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Hussain Qureshi — NA-156 Multan-III
  • Zartaj Gul — NA-191 DG Khan-III
  • Faheem Khan — NA-241 Korangi Karachi III
  • Saif Ur Rehman — NA-242 Karachi East-I
  • Muhammad Alamgir Khan — NA-243 Karachi East-II
  • Syed Ali Haider Zaidi — NA-244 Karachi East-III
  • Aftab Hussain Saddique — NA-247 Karachi South-II
  • Atta-Ullah — NA-250 Karachi West-III
  • Aftab Jhangir — NA-252 Karachi West-V
  • Muhammad Aslam Khan — NA-254 Karachi Central-II
  • Muhammad Najeeb Haroon — NA-256 Karachi Central-IV
  • Muhammad Qasim Khan Suri — NA-265 Quetta-II

Reserve Seats

  • Aliya Hamza Malik — RS-Women
  • Kanwal Shauzab — RS-Women

Earlier on July 28, 2022, the speaker approved the resignations of 11 PTI members under Article 64(1) of the Constitution of Pakistan.

According to the notification, the NA speaker accepted the resignations of the following members of the lower house last year:

  • Ali Muhammad Khan — NA-11, Mardan-III
  • Fazal Muhammad Khan — NA-24, Charsadda-II
  • Shaukat Ali — NA-31, Peshawar-V
  • Fakhar Zaman Khan — NA-45, Kurram-I
  • Farrukh Habib — NA-108, Faisalabad-VIII
  • Ijaz Ahmad Shah — NA-118, Nankana Sahib-II
  • Jamil Ahmed Khan — NA-237, Malir-II
  • Muhammad Akram Cheema — NA-239, Korangi Karachi-I
  • Abdul Shakoor Shad — NA-246, Karachi South-I
  • Shireen Mehrunnisa Mazari — Reserved Seat for Women (Punjab)
  • Shandana Gulzar Khan — Reserved Seat for Women (Khyber Pakhtunkhwa)

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NA speaker accepts resignations of 35 more PTI lawmakers

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  • Resignations accepted in accordance with Article 64 of Constitution.
  • Summary sent to ECP to de-notify PTI lawmakers.
  • Seventy PTI resignations have been accepted this week.

ISLAMABAD: The political uncertainty continues in Pakistan after the National Assembly Speaker Raja Pervaiz on Friday accepted the resignations of 35 more Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) MNAs.

The PTI had resigned from the lower house of parliament after the ouster of PTI chief Imran Khan in April 2022.

According to a press release issued by the National Assembly Secretariat, the resignations were accepted in accordance with clause (1) of Article 64 of the Constitution and rules of procedure and conduct of Business in the NA.

“In accordance with clause (1) of Article 64 of the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, read with Rule 43 of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in the National Assembly of Pakistan 2007, the Hon’ble Speaker of the National Assembly of Pakistan has been pleased to accept the resignations of the following Members of the National Assembly with effect from April 11, 2022, the date when the letter of respective resignations was submitted,” said the statement.

The resignations had been accepted with effect from 11 April 2022, the date when the letters of respective resignations were submitted, said Radio Pakistan.

Following the approval of the resignations, the summary was sent to the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to de-notify the PTI lawmakers.

Here’s the list of PTI lawmakers whose resignations have been accepted:

S.NoNameConstituency
01Dr Haider Ali KhanNA-2
02Saleem RehmanNA-3
03Sahibzada SibghatullahNA-5
04Mehboob ShahNA-6
05Muhammad Bashir KhanNA-7
06Junaid AkbarNA-8
07Sher Akbar KhanNA-9
08Ali Khan JadoonNA-16
09Engr Usman Khan TarakaiNA-19
10Mujahid AliNA-20
11Arbab Amir AyubNA-28
12Sher Ali ArbabNA-30
13Shahid AhmedNA-34
14Gul Dad KhanNA-40
15Sajid KhanNA-42
16Mohammad Iqbal KhanNA-44
17Aamer Mehmood KianiNA-61
18Syed Faiz ul HassanNA-70
19Chaudhry Shoukat Ali BhattiNA-87
20Umar Aslam KhanNA-93
21Amjad Ali KhanNA-96
22Khurram ShahzadNA-107
23FaizullahNA-109
24Malik Karamat Ali KhokharNA-135
25Syed Fakhar ImamNA-150
26Zahoor Hussain QureshiNA-152
27Ibraheem KhanNA-158
28Tahir IqbalNA-164
29Aurangzeb Khan KhichiNA-165
30Makhdoom Khusro BakhtiarNA-177
31Abdul Majeed KhanNA-187
32Andaleeb AbbasReserved seat
33Asma QadeerReserved seat
34Maleeka Ali BokhariReserved seat
35Munawara Bibi BalochReserved seat

Earlier, Ashraf had stalled the process of accepting resignations after July 28 stating the remaining lawmakers would be summoned individually for verification. 

However, contrary to his claims he quickened the process by accepting the resignations of 34 PTI MNAs and Awami Muslim League chief Sheikh Rashid earlier this week after an eight-month hiatus.

Soon after the PTI announced its return to the assembly and test the PM through a no-trust move, the government so far accepted 70 PTI resignations during the current week only.

Around 131 MNAs of the PTI had tendered their resignations en masse after Imran Khan’s government was ousted through a no-confidence motion in April last year.

By July 28, 2022, the NA speaker had accepted the resignations of only 11 PTI lawmakers.

PTI calls govt’s move ‘illegal and immoral’

Speaking to the media outside the Parliament House, senior PTI leaders said the speaker retracted from his old stance by accepting the resignations of 35 more PTI lawmakers today.

Asad Qaiser, Asad Umar, Shah Mahmood Qureshi, Fawad Chaudhry and others termed the government’s move “illegal and immoral”.

Former National Assembly Speaker Asad Qaiser condemned the decision and revealed that Ashraf had called the PTI leaders to the assembly and told them that the resignations would not be accepted unless he had a word with the MNAs himself separately.

“Were those whose resignations were accepted called by the Speaker?”Qaiser asked.

Berating the speaker’s decision, PTI Senior Vice President Fawad Chaudhry said now that 81 resignations were accepted, the government must also give a date for the general elections.

Expressing his displeasure over the decision, the PTI leader blamed Islamabad for the political and economic crises in the country. 

“We are heading towards a Sri Lanka-like situation,” Chaudhry claimed.

PTI Vice Chairman Shah Mahmood Qureshi said that the speaker first said that he cannot accept the resignations collectively.

“We decided to come to the meeting and he [the speaker] postponed it and when we came to the assembly, he accepted the resignations of 35 more MNAs,” said Qureshi, demanding that the rest of the resignations should also be accepted.

The party’s vice chairman said that the PTI wants snap polls so that the people can decide for themselves.

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