Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting, Chaudhary Fawad Hussain addressing a Press Conference in Islamabad on March 10, 2022.

Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry has said that the opposition should take back its no-confidence motion against Prime Minister Imran Khan considering the international economic situation and the political bitterness that would be created, adding that the PTI government “will see what can be given in return”.

He made the remarks while talking to news channel on Sunday night.

Chaudhry said one of the major problems with the country’s politics was that it was very divisive, claiming that the differences between the opposition and the government were “personalised” instead of being based on policy.

The information minister said that since the opposition parties formed the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM), “a lot of rancour has been created, hard statements have come forward and an environment is created … a doctrine of unintended consequences becomes operative and a lot of things happen which both parties do not want.”

So much bitterness would be created in politics by the time voting on the no-confidence motion takes place in two to three weeks that it would damage Pakistan, he said, adding that in his opinion, a solution should be found through which the opposition takes back the motion while “[we] will see what can be given in return.”

When asked what the government could offer the opposition in such a scenario, Chaudhry said there were a number of matters on which negotiations could be held with the opposition, including electoral reforms, changes to the National Accountability Bureau laws and dates and processes of the next general elections.

“Whatever the opposition’s [concerns] are, discussions can be held with open hearts,” he said while cautioning “serious people” in the opposition that amid the impending vote on the motion, “we will keep doing politics for 2-3 weeks and when we look back, we will see that our economy has been damaged so much that it will be a problem to make it recover.”

The country’s benefit should be prioritised, he added.

If the opposition wanted early elections, they could also make it their demand, the information minister said, adding that while there was “no harm” in discussions, no one would make unliateral efforts.

When the host questioned whether a security situation could be created on the day of voting because of the PTI’s plans to hold a rally at Islamabad’s D-Chowk, Chaudhry said it could happen.

Referring to the PPP’s recent long march which reached the capital on March 8, the minister said PTI believed “all those people bringing small rallies should see what a big one looks like”, adding that the rally would be a “sort of referendum”.

One million people would participate in the rally that would be held on the day of voting at D-Chowk, in front of Parliament House, he said. All parliamentarians arriving to vote on that day would have to pass through the rally on their way to the National Assembly and on their way back as well, he added.

When the host again questioned whether this would lead to a complicated security situation, the minister said, “We will see what situation will be created. That is why I’m saying they should take it back.”

On the question of PM Imran declaring an emergency, Chaudhry said there was no reason to do so and the scope of emergency after the 18th Amendment was very limited.


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