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Tahirul Qadri's demands extra-constitutional: Kaira

15 January, 2013

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ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Qamar Zaman Karia on Monday said that all the demands of Tahirul Qadri are extra-constitutional and the government could not go beyond the constitution.

Addressing a press conference at the Press Information Department, the minister said even the nation is not aware about the aims and objective of the long march.

He said that the Pakistan People's Party had also held long marches in the past and waged political struggle with the support of political forces for upholding rule of the law and restoration of the constitution in the country. But, he added, Qadri was spearheading a long march for extra-constitutional demands.

He said that not a single political party was supporting Qadri's march because his demands were not within the ambit of the constitution. He said since his arrival, Qadri has kept changing his demands and there were reports that he was giving new charter of demands, which is beyond comprehension. Kaira said all three demands of the cleric are ultra-constitutional, as he was terming parliament and the government as useless and wanted them to be abolished.

The minister said he also wanted dissolution of the election commission, which was again violation of the constitution.

He said that Qadri's demand included inclusion of the army and judiciary in consultation process of setting up a caretaker government, which was deviation from the constitution as after the 18th Amendment, Article 224-A lays down the procedure of forming a caretaker government, which was now a institutionalised institution.

"Gone are the days when a foreigner was appointed as prime minister of the country, casting far-reaching implications on the future of the country," he said.

Consultation between the two political parties regarding the caretaker setup, the minister said, was not a bargain as NA opposition leader Chaudhry Nisar was representing all the opposition parties, while leader of the House represented treasury benches in parliament.

Kaira said that the government would consult all the political parties at the time of setting up of the caretaker government.

He said that Article 213 provided for the appointment of members of election commission and its chief and there was a proper procedure for their removal. Qadri's demand in this regard is contrary to the constitution, he added.


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