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– File Photos
– File Photos
Imran Khan and Dr Tahirul Qadri. – File Photos
Imran Khan and Dr Tahirul Qadri. – File Photos
Dr Tahirul Qadri shows a copy of Pakistan's constitution which he claims it was violated by rulers, during a sit-in protest near the parliament building in Islamabad on Thursday. – AP Photo
Dr Tahirul Qadri shows a copy of Pakistan's constitution which he claims it was violated by rulers, during a sit-in protest near the parliament building in Islamabad on Thursday. – AP Photo

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) chief Dr Tahirul Qadri and Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf Chairman Imran Khan announced that Chief of Army Staff General Raheel Sharif has been appointed by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif as a 'mediator' and 'guarantor' for bringing the current crisis between the government and protesters to an end.

Speaking to their supporters late Thursday night, Tahirul Qadri and Imran Khan said they have given the prime minister 24 hours upon General Sharif’s assurances.

Both Imran Khan and Tahirul Qadri have been in contact with the Army Chief and he is likely to mediate and steer all parties out of this deadlock, military sources said.

Meetings between General Raheel Sharif, Imran and Tahirul Qadri were confirmed by Director General ISPR Asim Bajwa on Twitter. The DG ISPR also updated the start of the meetings, both of which ran for a very short period of time.

Both the PTI chairman and the PAT chief urged their supporters to stay in the federal capital for one more day and wait until the deadline ends in order to plan a future course of action after these latest developments.


Reactions on the political front


Speaking on a private TV channel, Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) chief Altaf Hussain welcomed the mediation by Army Chief General Sharif, saying imminent damage to Pakistan had been averted.

Voicing his concern over the late night developments, PTI senior leader Javed Hashmi told a private TV channel that it was unfortunate that the army had to step in to resolve a political crisis.


Army involvement


The announcement of General Raheel Sharif's direct involvement in bringing the current political crisis to an end lends weight to widespread speculation that the military establishment had a hand to play in the events that unfolded in the capital over the last two weeks.

Multiple meetings between the COAS, Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar, and Nawaz himself had been held over the last few days, in which the prime minister and army chief agreed to immediately resolve the political cul-de-sac.

The political confrontation has revived concerns about the conventional issue in Pakistani politics: competition for power between the military and civilian leaders. Some officials have accused elements within the military of orchestrating the protests to weaken the civilian government.

The Wall Street Journal had reported that Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif was close to reaching an agreement with the Army Chief General Raheel Sharif regarding important policy matters to end the ongoing protests against the government. The report suggested that as per the proposed agreement, the armed forces would control strategic policy areas, such as relations with the United States, Afghanistan and India.


PTI, PAT, brothers in protest


Speaking to marchers on the day dubbed by him as ‘Inquilab day’, PAT chief Dr Tahirul Qadri termed supporters of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) and his party as first cousins. He also said that he and PTI Chairman Imran Khan were brothers.

He said that they would not believe in reports that a First Information Report (FIR) in the Model Town tragedy case has been registered as desired by his party until he or his party’s counsel gets a copy of it.

Later, when local TV channels obtained a copy of the FIR, he rejected it, claiming Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s name was not included in it. He also said that sections of the Code of Criminal Procedure, pertaining to terrorism have also not been incorporated in the FIR.

Also read: *Model Town FIR registered against Nawaz, Shahbaz and 19 others*

Thousands of protesters led by Dr Qadri and Imran Khan have camped outside the Parliament in Islamabad to demand the resignation of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and to bring reforms in the country’s electoral system.

As well as wide-ranging calls for political reform, the PAT chief has also demanded police bring murder charges against PM Nawaz and his brother Shahbaz Sharif, the chief minister of Punjab, over the killing of at least 11 of his followers in clashes with police in Lahore’s Model Town.

In his speech, Dr Qadri said today was the day of "good riddance" from all problems faced by the nation. “Today is the day to get freedom from economic and social exploitation,” he added.

“More than 100 million poor of this country are slaves of this corrupt and unjust system,” said the PAT chief.

Reading quotes of Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah from the Constitution book, he said, “the cheque of Pakistan has bounced as we are bankrupt.”

“Our rulers have money when it comes to corruption, buying journalists and anchorpersons and living a lavish life style … but, there is no money to resolve issues concerning poor masses of the country,” he added.

The anti-government cleric said that he and his supporters were there in the federal capital to fight for the rights of people and to fulfill the promise of the Constitution.

“We are here for upholding human rights values and to cash the cheque of Quaid-i-Azam.”

We have been involved at least seven to eight times in talks with the government to show our seriousness in resolving the issue amicably, he said.


Qadri rejects Model Town FIR


The PAT chief rejected the FIR registered against 21 people in the Model Town tragedy, claiming Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s name was not included in it. He also said that sections of the Code of Criminal Procedure, pertaining to terrorism have also not been incorporated in the FIR.

“If we want Pakistan to be a great country making progress … If we want to be a great state, then we must be a true state, we must adopt the path of peace, democracy, tranquility, human rights and fundamental rights of every single poor person in the country,” he said.

“We must eliminate extremism and sectarianism from our society … transparency, accountability, rule of law for every rich and poor in this country, irrespective of creed or colour as envisioned by Quaid-i-Azam and that enjoyed by every democratic country in the world.”

“From all over Pakistan, we want peace and love, which will only be possible through revolution.”

Calling the 2013 general elections and current assemblies unconstitutional, the PAT said that through free and fair elections and the legal process, corrupt people must be weeded out.

“We want to stop the poor and the weak from being exploited. They must be given water and electricity,” said the Canada-based cleric, adding that, “We don’t want minorities to be minorities, they must be equal citizens in Pakistan.”


Editorial: Dangerous trends


The editorial extract below appeared in Dawn's print edition on August 27, 2014.

MUCH as Imran Khan, Tahirul Qadri and their respective protesters gathered in the heart of Islamabad would like to pretend otherwise, it is not just the PML-N government that is in the metaphorical firing line but the democratic system itself that is on trial. And, with the street protest against the government entering its third week, the pressure on the system has grown.

Quite how much that pressure has grown in recent days was in evidence on Tuesday as the Prime Minister’s Office issued an extraordinary statement after a meeting between Nawaz Sharif and army chief Gen Raheel Sharif. In the press release issued by the Prime Minister Office, there is not just an explicit mention that matters of high politics were discussed between the highest-ranking civilian and the most powerful military leader on matters concerning politics but that, rather extraordinarily, the two men are in agreement that the political impasse should be resolved expeditiously.

The benefit that Mr Sharif and the PML-N would have hoped to gain from such a statement is fairly obvious: the federal government is trying to show that the army leadership and the PML-N are still working together and in agreement on the way out of the crisis.

Essentially, the PML-N’s posturing is meant to signal to the protesters and their leaders that the military is on the government’s side, not the protesters’. In truth, however, the PML-N’s posturing only reveals its own uneasiness – and perhaps even uncertainty – about what may happen if push comes to shove. In truth, there are enough tensions on policy matters between the PML-N government and the military to leave a lingering question mark over whether the army leadership may prefer a different political dispensation in the country.

In truth, there are no guarantees in politics.


Comments (76) Closed



M1968 Aug 28, 2014 07:19pm

When will all this drama end!

Daniyal Aug 28, 2014 07:26pm

Whatever his background is, at least he is demanding some real changes pertaining to poor masses.

Nizamuddin Ahmad Aali Aug 28, 2014 07:42pm

What has he done to reverse the Minority status of Christians, Hindus, Parsis and other minorities so far. Lip service will not convince the people of Pakistan, maulvi sahib. How old were you when the steps to destroy the Pakistani tradition was being taken by mullas and politicians.

s chaudhury Aug 28, 2014 08:08pm

I fully support Dr's stand on FIR There is no chance of getting justice from this government who interferes in judiciary

syed wali wazir Aug 28, 2014 08:08pm

You guys must unite until your legitimate demands be accepted

zia Aug 28, 2014 08:09pm

TQ and IK just want confrontation and bloodshed. Since FIR has been registered and TQ is not ready to accept it,govt should not show anymore weakness and flexibility. it's now justified to clear Islamabad from these firebrand Lunatics and their followers. They have made peoples life miserable.

Mustafa Aug 28, 2014 08:21pm

Inqilab-e-Azadi, Insha-Allah.

Dr. Salaria, Aamir Ahmad Aug 28, 2014 08:21pm

What else can he do?

pathanoo Aug 28, 2014 08:27pm

Nothing will ever satisfy IK and TQ. May be the Prime Ministership but then the question is to whom - IK or TQ?

Fatima Aug 28, 2014 08:38pm

Inqilab and Azadi Zindabad

Syed Aug 28, 2014 08:40pm

He is right.

Murtaza Aug 28, 2014 08:51pm

Whoever is thinking that the Govt. showed flexibility by lodging the FIR, that person should first read up on what democracy means.Govt. has no right to stop or delay justice by not lodging FIR, if any Govt. does that, that itself is proof enough of their criminal activities.The question that should be asked now is why was it not lodged earlier and who i responsible for not lodging it instantly.

Umar Aug 28, 2014 08:57pm

What's happened to TQ's deadline?? Pls get on your flight and go home to Canada

Real Truth Aug 28, 2014 09:17pm

@pathanoo Fact of the matter is NS is the only unifying factor for these two. If NS was not a factor, i.e., the PMship was there for taking, these two will turn against each other in a split second!

A Kashifi Aug 28, 2014 09:22pm

If PTI and PAT protesters enter PM house without causing any property damage to chase Nawaz out? May be it's a best way out. No martial law no police muqabala needed. Caretaker government can then be formed, new election called. No one from caretaker eligible to stand in the election, that can be army's guarantee to nation.

z khan Aug 28, 2014 09:29pm

brother to brother very true title for IK and TUQ

raja Toronto Aug 28, 2014 10:13pm

more humiliation is waiting for both TUQ and IK as they keep on reading the script , script writer has already achieved his goals and he did not need these actors in next episodes.

NS already acted in previous episodes and he knows producer and director very well so he might get a new role soon....

ghuman Aug 28, 2014 10:42pm

Looks like army got deal with nawaz shrif and now nawaz handed the matters to army to deal with them.

Nero Aug 28, 2014 10:44pm

An exit strategy being well scripted. Perhaps it was always been in the mind.

Syed Ahmed Aug 28, 2014 10:48pm

Words,promises,bright future, happiness, that's reward of revolution &independence. How simple are people!

Harmony Aug 28, 2014 10:49pm

It had to come down to army role in some form or another. There was no choice after the stalemate.

Khan Aug 28, 2014 10:55pm

Game over for nawaz league.

Syed Aug 28, 2014 11:06pm

Great news. Nawaz is on his knees now.

Jamal Aug 28, 2014 11:25pm

It's a martial law in a so-called democratic setup. Nawaz Sharif can go to any limits to save his seat. SHAME..

Seedoo Aug 28, 2014 11:25pm

This has to be a joke. In a democracy, military remains subservient to the elected officials. They cannot mediate when politicians fight like cats and dogs. In Pakistan, it is a different story, politicians take orders from the military.

Salman Aug 28, 2014 11:25pm

So a government overwhelmingly elected by a nation of 200 million people will have to share power with the army because a few hundred or thousand protestors led by their leaders are not happy for various reasons.

This is a most depressing day for democracy in Pakistan and indeed for the country in general where any political protest or dispute is resolved by the army intervening and the elected government losing its authority. There is not much hope for this country.

raja Toronto Aug 28, 2014 11:34pm

that is what we have been saying , so azadi and inqilab were being dictated from rawalpindi....

Zain Aug 28, 2014 11:39pm

Thank you Imran Khan for bringing the army back in the driver seat and torpedoing democracy. The coming generations will thank you for that.

Krezy Aug 28, 2014 11:42pm

Democratic leader bent to boots... sad day... but leaders of the ruling elite are exclusively responsible for this...

M. Emad Aug 28, 2014 11:43pm

Army mediates democracy !

Anwar Aug 28, 2014 11:48pm

What a dark day for democracy in Pakistan. Democracy has been stabbed from behind. Shame on all of us that we could not saved democracy.

Sajid Rabbani Aug 28, 2014 11:49pm

I am sure our COAS, as a mediator, can finalize this matter in a manner acceptable to all the parties. At the same time nobody would be able to say that the army has taken anybody's side.

Sheroz Aug 28, 2014 11:51pm

Army Rules... Shame on these politicians

Mustafa J. Aug 28, 2014 11:52pm

As far as I know, and I may be wrong, Pakistan was never achieved by "Inqelab" such as street marches, protests, threats, slogans, civil disobedience. At no time Mohammad Ali Jinnah led protest marches. He gained Pakistan through legal and lawful means.

There are worst problems in many countries of the world. Are problems solved there by revolution and overthrow of governments?

Naveed Javed Aug 29, 2014 12:01am

Thankyou Nawaz and Imran for bringing Pakistan back to the politics of 90s!

GA Aug 29, 2014 12:06am

If Martial Law is imposed then no civilian leaders will win. Certainly not IK and Qadri.

Gautham Aug 29, 2014 12:06am

Pakistan is such an unfortunate country. Their leaders are like moths that get attracted to fire - self-destructive.

Shahid Aug 29, 2014 12:13am

@M. Emad Who brought this situation ?

zafar Aug 29, 2014 12:18am

So its PAT and PTI who eventually had to call in the Army ! how ironic.

Zack Khan Aug 29, 2014 12:19am

@zia You don't even know what freedom is ...and how costly it is...when you start compromising you become politician! not freedom fighter!

AJamal Aug 29, 2014 12:19am

Politicians have failed themselves, yet again.

Jamal Aug 29, 2014 12:25am

Another Black day in the democratic history of Pakistan

Jamal Aug 29, 2014 12:26am

The script writer is no more anonymous

Aseem Aug 29, 2014 12:30am

Wow! What a leader ,who made deal with Army just to save his seat,Bravo Do you think he is capable of running a country, you all are living in fools paradise

shahid Aug 29, 2014 12:34am

Shaikh Rasheed had said once that Nawaz Sharif is the biggest enemy of himself. Nawaz Sharif's own mistakes will help him sink.

Muneer Hussain Lashari Aug 29, 2014 12:46am

Pakistan

Emad Aug 29, 2014 12:47am

Although Gen Raheel Sharif was cherry picked by NS himself, but I have confidence in him to do the right thing for the betterment of Pakistan

Rashid Ishaq Aug 29, 2014 12:56am

I do not know what is going to happen tomorrow but one thing for sure is that PAT won over PTI; TUQ who was zero got more points than you Imran and we thought you are the hero

ben amin Aug 29, 2014 12:57am

What a pathetic end to the wretched saga! In this way everyone concerned saves his face. Imran khan having the correct ideology but having no polical prowess; Tahir ul Qadri shown deep thinking but locked in by his demands. Sharif has had to rely on the 'neutral' army. What a joke this has become? Pakistan will never change in a lifetime...until we Pakistanis change our corrupt ways. Included in this is me and every other Pakistani.

aji89 Aug 29, 2014 01:01am

Well, The Great Kingdom of Shareefiyah is pretty much devastated

Imran Khan Aug 29, 2014 01:10am

It's not only Javed Hashmi who is grieved, it's millions of Pakistanis who r saddened at the political demise of Imran Khan

Zahid Aug 29, 2014 01:33am

COAS now put all the politician on trail, ik tq ns ss zerdari. Their show cost dearly to Pakistan their time to payback now

sami Aug 29, 2014 01:38am

By bringing army in to action is a Shameful act of NS ever in history . It's black day for democracy and ppl of Pakistan.

pathanoo Aug 29, 2014 01:38am

There you go, Imran. Nawaz Sharif just threw you a rope to keep you from drowning in your own created mess. Say,"Thank You," and accept it graciously. You must learn to loose gracefully if you are ever to become true leader of Pakistan.

Gulfy Aug 29, 2014 01:41am

Congrats IK - you wanted military, you have got it. The nation says a big Thank You. History of long marches for democratic rule will always remember you.

Iqbal Hadi Zaidi Aug 29, 2014 01:49am

Done is done cannot be undone. PM Nawaz had been too stubborn and did not listen to Imran and or Qadri and tried his best through his blue-eyed men to break off their dharnas but none of the two leaders budged even an inch from their instance and therefore PM Nawaz in order to save his skin had to seek the help of army chief to mediate and get it sorted out. Mian sahib, if nit annoying, why did you ignore Imran when he asked for investigating poll results if just 4 constituencies? Will you personify who advised you alike? Iqbal Hadi Zaidi / Former Diplomat / Kuwait / Mobile 00965-66229897 / zaidiformerdiplomat@hotmail.com

Sunil Aug 29, 2014 01:56am

Democracy is Pakistan is an oxymoron. It is like saying very very dry water.

Conflicted Aug 29, 2014 02:36am

An innings defeat for Imran Khan; Nawaz Sharif emasculated; the army in charge; democracy in the dog house! Poor Pakistan.

Dr. Salaria, Aamir Ahmad Aug 29, 2014 02:57am

It proves beyond any reasonable doubt that like in most of the south Asian countries, the nexus of real power lies with the armed forces.

Musarrat Javed Aug 29, 2014 03:14am

Very depressing day. Cheap politicians are bringing shame to our country. Army again on front very dangerous for the country.

ben amin Aug 29, 2014 03:42am

Is the General related to the Sharif clan?? Forgive my ignorance. LOL.

NASAH (USA) Aug 29, 2014 03:57am

Sirajul of Jamaat-e Islami has to lecture the two jokers as they never believed in Parliamentary system -- the value of sticking with the democratic mean -- not army dictatorship -- how pathetic for the duo of PIT & PAT.

Lucky Star Aug 29, 2014 04:11am

@Iqbal Hadi Zaidi

Did u get the job through connections? You don't know the ABC of the diplomacy.

Jawad Aug 29, 2014 04:11am

It would be naive to think that army was INVITED by NS. Army was watching 2 or 3 kids fighting for an expensive toy and interfered before the toy is broken. That's why I respect army. The only institution with minimum corruption ( 99%) the only patriotic force. I'm not for Martial Law but credit should be given. I still would vote for Musharraf if given a chance. I do think IK means good / is sincere / and not corrupt. That's all I have to say about current democratic forces. I don't have any proof of corruption but again everything is in front of us. I do think constitution needs to be seriously fixed or rewritten. PM has ridiculous powers , need balance of power along with a lot of other stuff like minority rights etc. I have no doubt that NS and Zardari and co either are incapable of doing it or they don't want to.

bluemetal77 Aug 29, 2014 04:50am

Wow. A politcal government claiming to be in power with a heavy mandate of the nation can't resolve a political issue and muster enough support from the nation - contradicts their existence in the seat doesn't it?

Instead they are wagging their tail around the army to help come out of it - i have no doubt NS would've used force if it hadn't been for the perfectly organised rallies by TUQ and IK where everyone attending have maintained a calm and composed stance.

There are definitely under the table strings being pulled here .. but all i care is for a better Pakistan free from corruption and free from being in hands of a few family run political setup .. no matter how we achieve it in the end .. and by whoever being in power to do that!

Jawad Aug 29, 2014 04:54am

@Sunil

Yes sir. You have the right to make fun. Enjoy the show.

mariner from 28th Aug 29, 2014 05:06am

is this what Imran Khan wanted? a military leader's assurances! Imran Khan was a hope for youth and ordinary pakistanis as he was considered as clean person but as days go by we all are questioning ourselves why. The most important issue here is that with all this the HOPE is dying........... we have to go back into our shells and wait for someone else. with Imran Khan's actions that hope is dead now..........

Lucky Star Aug 29, 2014 05:39am

@Murtaza PAT supporters!

Tariq Ahmed Aug 29, 2014 06:15am

A bad practice bringing military in politics , I am really disappointed with the out come of the whole protest set by PTI , no doubt PTI action is in the best interest of the nation for future , one thing we know that it will be real hard for the people to rig future elections and it is a great victory and all credit goes to no doubt Imran Khan , having said that I think military involvement is the result of current corrupt rulers. The way the Sharif family played the game of law shows how much morally corrupt the sharif family is . It is amazing to see that media can't even understand the problem let alone discus the solution , not one media anchor (so called to me they are only jokers) asked any question that why we have laws that does not protect victim , why victim has to spend money and time to get justice , why law enforcement need a report investigate a crime what the hack is this game of law is in Pakistan. It is disgusting and stinky people who protect them and the one who do not discus it.

Darkanu Aug 29, 2014 06:58am

There are 14 casualties in Model Town episode but you repeated mentioned 11. Please clarify.

Gulfy Aug 29, 2014 07:24am

@Iqbal Hadi Zaidi pointing the gun in the wrong direction

Tariq K Sami Aug 29, 2014 07:27am

So Imran took just 12 minutes and Dr Tahir ul Qadiri took over 3 hours to explain his position to Raheel Sharif. Nawaz Sharif probably took only 3 minutes to make his request to Raheel Sharif. And Raheel Sharif probably took only one minute in accepting this offer.

(it is possible that it was the other way around and Raheel Sharif made the offer to Nawaz Sharif and he accepted the offer gracefully).

Aftab Alam Khan Aug 29, 2014 09:41am

It took nearly three weeks to appoint a mediator. During this period we witnessed an unprecedented speeches cum mid night shows in the heart of the Capital of Mr TQ and IK demanding resignation of the PM and CM. However Government failed to judge and resolve the issue politically and fell in to Army's lap murdering the democracy. Army which is required to guard our borders are engaged by the Government to take care of the streets of Islamabad. Shame on the Government, PM and its sham democracy. This incompetency of the Government, endless speech of Mr Quadri and Khan followed by mid-night shows engaging thousands of he and she youth, children must now end as early as possible.

saad Aug 29, 2014 01:14pm

@Mustafa J. agreed

NASAH (USA) Aug 30, 2014 01:27pm

If the army can be used by a civilian government to shed blood in FATA -- why the same army can't be be used by the same civilian government -- to PERSUADE the TWO DEVOTEES of the ARMY -- to take their flock from the streets and GO HOME.

NOT to shed blood on the street of Islamabad.

If an army can be used for war -- it can also be used for PEACE on the streets by persuasion or mediation whatever you want to call it.

Nawaz and Nisar have done nothing wrong.

M Saleem chaudhdhry Aug 31, 2014 06:53pm

Who else could ask Army chief to become mediator except mentally imbecile Nawaz with out nerves and guts to face the self-created crisis? Such a person weaves a web of white lies. His stooge ,full of complexes,Nisar Chaudhry started with white lies in the parliament and goaded his goofy leader,Nawaz to follow him to make himself a laughing stock. Army Chief, Raheel Sharif has seen enough of this and is most likely to act after consultation with his corps commanders. To sort out this situation ,endangering Pakistan.