The Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) has announced launching a long march against Prime Minister Imran Khan-led Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government in December.
The decision was taken during a meeting of the anti-government alliance in Islamabad on Saturday.
Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) supremo Nawaz Sharif attended the meeting via video link from London while party President Shehbaz Sharif and Vice-President Maryam Nawaz joined the huddle from Lahore.
Other opposition parties’ leaders including Mahmood Khan Achakzai, Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, Awais Noorani and Aftab Sherpao were also among those in attendance on the occasion.
The meeting mulled the overall political situation, inflation, National Accountability Bureau (NAB) Ordinance, besides other issues.
Also read: Next PDM huddle on 11 November: Noorani
The participants deliberated upon the PDM’s future course of action against the incumbent government over the ever-rising inflation. Besides agreeing to organise the long march, the leaders also announced holding “inflation marches” in the provinces.
The opposition leaders further agreed that all provincial inflation marches will ultimately culminate into the planned long march, a final date of which will be announced later following a PDM leaderships’ conference.
During the opposition alliance huddle, the participants also summoned a meeting of the PDM’s steering committee. It was decided to organise a march against inflation in Karachi, Quetta and Peshawar on November 13, 17 and 20, respectively.
آخری ریلی لاہور میں ہوگی جس کے بعد اسلام آباد کی طرف مہنگای کے خلاف فیصلہ کن لانگ مارچ ھو گا۔اب یہ تحریک عمران خان کو گھر بھجوا کر ہی ختم ہو گی، یہ عمران خان سے نجات کی تحریک ہے۔عوام ایک لمحہ اس حکومت کو برداشت کرنے کو تیار نہیں جس نے مہنگائی سے عوام کی کمر توڑ دی ہے
— PML(N) (@pmln_org) November 6, 2021
‘PDM to send Imran packing’
Briefing media persons following the meeting, senior PML-N leader Shahid Khaqan Abbasi said that all parties representing the alliance joined the consultation held today.
He said that the participants discussed Pakistan’s political and economic situation, worst inflation, NAB ordinance, “so-called electoral reforms”, and the domestic and foreign issues confronting the country.
The PML-N’s senior vice-president further said all opposition leaders strongly condemned the worst inflation and rejected the spike in the prices of electricity, gas, petrol, flour, ghee, sugar, medicines and other essential commodities.
They demanded that the hike be reversed to provide immediate relief to the masses, he added.
Also read: Maryam seeks public opinion on PDM’s ‘extreme’ action against govt
Abbasi termed “the Imran Khan-led government’s historic corruption” the main reason for the “unprecedented” inflation. “The participants also demanded the disclosure of the conditions agreed with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) before the masses.”
He added: “This movement will end only after sending Imran Khan home and it is time to get rid of him. The masses won’t tolerate the government for even a moment that has made them to collapse due to inflation.”
According to the PML-N leader, all PDM’s leadership termed the NAB ordinance, electoral reforms, Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) and internet voting mala fide and rejected them completely.
“The Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif will consult other parties in parliament and finalise a strategy about the protest.”