PML-N, MQM agree to join hands

ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) on Wednesday agreed to join hands as opposition allies on vital national issues following days of behind-the-scene talks.Once political archrivals turned allies when both the parties’ representatives met to discuss the options of a joint opposition and finally came up with a declaration, which announced that the two parties had agreed to form a joint opposition in parliament.

The reports kept pouring in during the last few days about the possibility of a joint opposition comprising the MQM and PML-N when leaders of the parties were engaged in closed-door meetings. The talks, which spanned over two hours, brought the two parties on the same page against the ruling Pakistan People’s Party (PPP). They vowed to take a uniform stance on the national issues confronting the country. PML-N side was represented by senators Ishaq Dar, Pervez Rasheed, Mushahiduallh Khan and MNA Khawaja Saad Rafique while the MQM side by Haider Abbas Rizvi, Raza Haroon and Wasim Akhtar.

“We have decided to work as effective opposition in the Senate, National Assembly and provincial assemblies within the constitutional and legal parameters,” said MQM’s Rizvi while reading the joint statement to journalists after the meeting.According to the statement, the two parties would work together on key national issues, such as inflation, load shedding, law and order, corruption, present political scenario, ‘rigging’ in the Azad Jammu and Kashmir elections, excessive use of authority by the government.

“We will explore the alternates if the government didn’t perform to resolve the key issues of the nation,” PML-N’s Dar said, adding that the joint opposition would take its start from parliament to press the government to mend its ways. Dar felt that national interest was supreme at the moment when he was asked about the bitter relations between the two parties often resorting to mudslinging against each other in the recent past.

“Whatever happened is a matter of bygone days and in the larger interest of the country, it is better to move forward by ignoring what had happened between the two parties.” The PML-N leader hoped that the combined opposition would be an effective force to pressurise the government for resolving numerous issues confronting the nation.He also welcomed the Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) if it came to the folds of the joint opposition. – Dailytimes