The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) kept the tempo of its anti-govt tirade through public rallies in three major cities on Sunday, reiterating its demand that Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani step down after his court conviction.
Addressing a public gathering at Badhber in Peshawar on Sunday, PML-N’s central vice president Amir Muqam said that PML-N’s renewed drive against the government aims to force the incumbent prime minister to write a letter to the Swiss authorities and bring back the looted money of the Pakistani people from abroad.
Muqam said it was a challenge to arrange the public gathering in this militancy-hit area.
Senator Iqbal Zafar Jhagra, MNA Hanif Abbasi, retired captain Safdar and PML-N provincial leader Fareed Tufan also addressed the public meeting.
“Yousaf Raza Gilani is an unconstitutional prime minister and if he does not leave the office, PML-N will continue its nationwide agitation against the government,” Jhagra said.
PML-N will not accept any agreement of the British government with the convicted prime minister. We ask the UK government not to give official protocol to Gilani, he said.
Fareed Tufan lambasted Imran Khan “for playing a government-friendly role” after the court’s verdict and termed PTI a B-team of the government.
Meanwhile, PML-N Sindh president Ghouse Ali Shah addressing a ‘Go Gilani Go’ rally outside the Karachi Press Club on Sunday said the convicted prime minister should leave the post.
“We will carry out this movement until the court’s order is followed and Gilani leaves his post,” Shah said.
Demanding an end to the Lyari operation, Shah said that when the head of the Peoples Amn Committee Uzair Baloch raised his voice against injustice in Lyari, the PPP branded him a criminal.
Jamaat-e-Islami leader Mohammad Hussain Mehanti was also present to support the movement.
In Gujranwala, people protested against the government by burning effigies of Prime Minister Gilani, with unruly members of the crowd creating scenes at the rally spot.
PML-N MNA Khwaja Saad Rafiq said that the people will compel President Asif Zardari and PM Gilani to follow the Constitution and the law. In case the rulers do not get Gilani to resign, the PPP will lose its government and PML-N will press for new elections.
He reminded the rulers of how they had succumbed to the pressure of an earlier long march for restoring the judges. “If a new long march starts it will not stop at the resignation of the PM, even the PPP government will have to go.”
(with additional reporting from Rabia Ali in Karachi and Atta Chauhan in Gujranwala)
Published in The Express Tribune, May 7th, 2012.