LAHORE: National Assembly Speaker Sardar Ayaz Sadiq says Islamabad will not be blocked on Oct 30 on the call of the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf.
However, he parried a question about the government’s plan to stop the PTI from blocking Islamabad.
“Islamabad will not be shut down on Oct 30. A big lock is required for the purpose. Some elements do not want Chinese investment in Pakistan but foreign investment cannot be blocked here through conspiracies,” Mr Sadiq said here on Saturday.
After 30th, PTI to shut down entire country: Rasheed
Talking to reporters after inauguration of an academic block at Queen Mary College, the speaker said Imran Khan should himself realise what he plans to do (on Oct 30). “I will not advise Imran Khan as he is a mature person and should realise what he is going to do.”
Imran Khan had announced blocking Islamabad saying the PTI would not let the government function after Oct 30. The PTI said it would not shut down the capital if Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif steps down or accepts the opposition ToR for investigation into the offshore holdings of his (Nawaz) family as revealed in Panama Papers.
The PTI, in 2014, had staged a 126-day long sit-in in Islamabad demanding resignation of Nawaz Sharif over alleged rigging in the 2013 general elections.
Mr Sadiq further said public meetings made no difference as Imran Khan could not lock down Islamabad. “Rather nobody can shut down Islamabad,” he added.
Asked about the extension of army chief Gen Raheel Sharif, he said: “It is a sensitive matter. However, a decision in this regard will be taken in a few days.”
PTI Secretary-General Jahangir Tareen says there will be a “sea of people” in Islamabad on 30th.
Mahmoodur Rasheed: Opposition Leader in the Punjab Assembly Mian Mahmoodur Rasheed said the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) is going to shut Islamabad for the rights of the country’s 220 million people, adding “corrupt rulers” should not dare block the party’s protest.
After Islamabad, he said, the PTI would go shutting down the whole country if the prime minister did not present himself and his family for accountability.
“Oct 30 will mark the beginning of a decisive struggle,” he added.
Talking to the media in response to National Assembly Speaker Ayaz Sadiq’s media talk here on Saturday, Mr Rasheed said no power could stop PTI workers and supporters from marching on Islamabad. He said only those fighting for their personal gains were afraid of torture and arrests.
“The masses themselves will remove all hurdles in their way on Oct 30,” he added.
Published in Dawn, October 9th, 2016