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Opp set to hold protest rally in Lahore against ‘rigging’

Opp set to hold protest rally in Lahore against ‘rigging’

The joint opposition on Saturday decided to stage a protest demonstration against rising inflation in the country and alleged rigging in the last general elections, in Lahore on July 25, the day which will also mark the first anniversary of the last general elections that brought Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) into power.

The stage of protest rally will be set at Lahore’s historical Charing Cross on Mall Road. The event will be hosted by PML-N’s local chapter, and all the opposition parties are likely to attend.

The decisions were made on Saturday in a meeting of representatives of opposition parties held in Lahore, chaired by PML-N General Secretary Ahsan Iqbal. The meeting was also attended by PPP’s Ch Manzoor, MPA Syed Hassan Murtaza, Lahore President Aziz ur Rehman Chan, Aslam Gill, while JUI-F’s Maulana Amjad Khan was also present. PML-N’s Imran Goraya, MPA Ramzan Bhatti, former Lahore mayor Col (r) Mubashar, Azma Bukhari, Deputy Secretary General Attaullah Tarra and other PML-N parliamentarians from Lahore also attended.

Later, PML-N’s Central Executive Committee meeting was held at Model Town, chaired by Opposition Leader in National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif. The top leadership of PML-N including Maryam Nawaz, Ahsan Iqbal, Pervaiz Rasheed, Raja Zafarul Haq, Dr Asif Karmani, Barjees Tahir, Sardar Awais Laghari, Ayaz Sadiq, Mushahid Ullah Khan, Attaullah Tarrar and other parliamentarians attended the meeting. The issues including no-confidence motion against Senate Chairman Sadiq Sanjrani, arrest of PML-N leadership by NAB, inflation and the video of accountability court judge were discussed at the CEC meeting.

Briefing media after the meeting, Ahsan Iqbal said the government is trying to escape from the no-confidence motion against the Senate chairman. He said Sanjrani should morally resign as he has lost the confidence of the Upper House.

Ahsan Iqbal said the PML-N’s alternate leadership is ready in case the existing leadership is arrested by the government. “We condemn the arrest of former prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi as it shows a sheer vengeance against the PML-N,” he said. “Such arrests cannot make us budge from our demand of seeking justice for incarcerated supreme leader of party Nawaz Sharif,” he said.

He urged the chief justice to take notice of the video of accountability court judge Arshad Malik and demanded that Nawaz Sharif be released from the jail immediately.

Talking to media after the CEC meeting, Maryam Nawaz said she will definitely go to Faisalabad to lead the protest rally against the government despite all the restrictions being imposed on her. “It is my first protest rally but the government is creating hindrances as the district administration of Faisalabad isn’t allowing me to hold the rally,” she said. “PML-N is the party of masses and we cannot be suppressed by such arrests and detentions,” she said. Rejecting any sort of deal with the government, Maryam said that no one can dare to contact her for any ‘deal’. She was of the view that Nawaz Sharif wouldn’t have been in the jail if he was interested in making a deal. “Nawaz Sharif and Maryam Nawaz cannot ditch the democracy by making a deal with the government,” she said, and added that she continues to receive certain messages from here and there. “The entire military leadership is with Imran Khan on the US tour which shows that the world powers know very well to whom they should talk to … and therefore Imran had to take them along,” she concluded.

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