ISLAMABAD: The Rahbar Committee — a conglomerate of opposition parties — on Tuesday called off road blockades and anti-government sit-ins being held in various parts of the country as part of its ‘Plan B’ to force the government to quit, saying the blockades were causing “inconvenience to the public”.
The decision was announced by JUI-F leader Akram Durrani, the convener of the committee. PML-N’s Ahsan Iqbal, PPP’s Farhatullah Babar and Mian Iftikhar Hussain of ANP among other leaders of opposition parties attended the meeting.
Addressing a news conference following the meeting, Durrani said the JUI-F activists would remove barriers from all sit-in sites tonight. “Opposition parties, from now on, will hold rallies at district level throughout the country,” he announced.
He said the decision was taken owing to difficulties being faced by the masses and local traders.
“The committee has also suggested calling an all parties conference (APC) at the earliest,” said the JUI-F leader. “It has endorsed our policy of mounting pressure on the government,” he added.
Durrani said the future course of action with regards to opposition’s protest rallies would emerge in the next few days. “Writing is on the wall… [Prime Minister] Imran Khan will have to go home now,” he maintained.
He said there would be no need of any other plans after just-concluded ‘Plan B’ to topple the government.
Farhatullah Babar, speaking on the occasion, said his party completely agreed with Durrani’s views. “We are satisfied with Akram Durrani’s clarification on holding dialogue with Chaudhry brothers – Shujaat Hussain and Pervaiz Elahi of PML-Q,” he remarked.
Ahsan Iqbal said sending the government packing without wasting any more time was necessary to ensure protection of all segments of the society. “We will raise public issues in our protest demonstrations at district level,” he said.
“A democratically elected government through free and fair elections in 2020 is the only solution to the country’s woes,” said the PML-N leader.
Mian Iftikhar slammed the government over its alleged double standards, saying the rulers were holding talks with the opposition by forming one negotiating committee after the other during ‘Azadi March’, but changed its tone as soon as the sit-in ended in the federal capital.
The ANP leader also criticised the government over its alleged mistreatment of ailing former president Asif Zardari in prison.