All registered parties can take part in general elections: caretaker PM

Published October 14, 2023
Prime Minister Anwaarul Haq Kakar (C) talks to the media in Peshawar on Friday. — PID photo
Prime Minister Anwaarul Haq Kakar (C) talks to the media in Peshawar on Friday. — PID photo

PESHAWAR: Prime Minister Anwaarul Haq Kakar on Friday said that different political parties have different opinions rega­r­ding the general election, but the caretaker government will hold polls as soon as the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) announces the schedule.

“Every political party registered with the ECP is entitled to file [nomination papers] for its candidate,” the caretaker PM said, while talking to media person about the caretaker government’s mandate to ensure a level playing field for all political parties.

When asked about the possible return of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, PM Kakar said that everything would be done according to the law.

The prime minister said Pakistan wants to establish a ‘healthy’ relationship with Afghanistan and have cross-border movement based on globally established principles.

Kakar for ‘healthy’ relationship with Afghanistan; rules out negotiations with TTP

He emphasised the need for a system of movement between the two countries, following international principles for visas and passports, with the aim of transitioning from the current unhealthy relationship to a healthier one.

“Not all, but a fraction [of Afghan nationals] is involved in adverse activities. The state is facing challenges, including social, crime and militancy, and will do what is in our interest,” PM Kakar said.

He said the policy was to send back those Afghan nationals who are residing in Pakistan illegally, adding that it does not mean severing ties with Afghanistan. He also stated that they illegal Afghan nationals were not in any database and this was an issue for Pakistan.

PM Kakar said provinces had shared their challenges in terms of identifying, sheltering and sending back the illegal Afghan nationals with the federal government and the it was looking into them. A rationalised policy would be implemented to ensure the burden was shared by the provinces and the federal government for its smooth implementation.

Negotiations with TTP

When asked if there was any possibility of talks or any plans for negotiations with the banned Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) in the future, PM Kakar ruled out any further negotiations and said that the state was powerful enough to combat the banned terror group, whether for one year or a hundred years.

“We have no intention to talk to TTP. They are killing our children and we will kill them,” the prime minister said.

The PM praised KP for confronting militancy on the frontline and questioned what would have happened if any other region had faced the same situation.

“KP has faced militancy on the front line and I don’t know what others would have done [in such a situation],” PM Kakar said, adding that realising the dream of Pakistan is not an easy task and requires sacrifices to secure the future generation. “Is the future generation secure even after sacrifices of 90,000 people?”

Earlier, the prime minister held meeting with KP Governor Ghulam Ali and caretaker KP Chief Minister Muhammad Azam Khan, where the he was briefed on overall security situation in the province.

PM Kakar also met Constable Umar Saeed, who bravely thwarted a militant attack in district Hangu, and awarded him Rs0.5 million.

Published in Dawn, October 14th, 2023

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