PAT’s steering committee to meet today to decide future protest strategy

LAHORE: Pakistan Awami Tehreek’s (PAT) steering committee, formed after the opposition parties’ all parties conference (APC) on the Model Town incident, will meet today to decide the next course of action after the APC deadline for resignations from Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif and Law Minister Rana Sanaullah ended.
PAT leader Khurram Nawaz Gandapur said that opposition parties have agreed to attend the steering committee meeting scheduled for today.
In the meeting, the opposition parties will decide the future course of action to be taken after the given deadline for resignations of Shehbaz Sharif and Rana Sanaullah over the Model Town inquiry report ended.
Gandapur said that he has contacted Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf leader Jahanghir Tareen, Pakistan Peoples Party representative Manzoor Watto, Pakistan Muslim League-Q leader Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi and Awami Muslim League chief Sheikh Rashid to attend the meeting.
Resignations are not given, but taken, Gandapur remarked, adding that the opposition has waited too long and now it was time to take serious decisions.

On December 30, 2017 the PAT-led APC decided January 7 deadline for CM Shehbaz Sharif, provincial Law Minister Rana Sanaullah and others responsible for the Model Town incident to resign.

Addressing the joint press conference, PAT chief Dr Tahir-ul-Qadri told journalists that in case the January 7 deadline was not met, the steering committee would announce the future plan of action on January 8 (today) which may include sit-ins in Lahore or across the country.

10-point statement by APC

The APC had put forward a 10-point statement:

1) All Parties Conference condemns the Model Town incident and the amendment in the Finality of Prophethood declaration.
2) Model Town incident was the worst of state terrorism, in which the leadership of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz, including Nawaz Sharif, Shehbaz Sharif and Rana Sanaullah were involved along with bureaucrats, police officers and Punjab government officials. They ordered firing on 100 people on the pretext of an anti-encroachment operation, martyring 14.
3) The amendment in the Finality of the Prophethood is an attack on the faith of hundreds of thousands of Muslims and on the Constitution. Nawaz Sharif and PLM-N as a party were involved in this state terrorism. The mastermind behind amendment in the Finality of Prophethood declaration has neither been brought to the fore nor has the culprit been punished. PML-N has lost the right to hold power after attacking the faith. This conflict will continue till people involved in the crime are taken to task. APC demands the culprits be dealt with an iron fist.
4) APC announced that people martyred and injured on June 17, 2014, in Model Town were not only workers of Pakistan Awami Tehreek but were also citizens of Pakistan. It is the joint responsibility of all the parties in the APC to fight for justice for the people who were fired at. APC owns the efforts that will be undertaken for the purpose. Justice in the Model Town incident will prove to be a milestone for the rule of law.
5) The bereaved families of Model Town incident have got only the report of Justice Baqir Najafi after waiting for justice for three and a half years. This proves that transparent investigation, trial, and provision of justice would not be possible in the case till Nawaz Sharif and Shehbaz Sharif will remain in power. Although 125 police officials were summoned, not a single one was arrested. Not only this, bureaucrats and government officials involved in the murder have not even been summoned. This shows that the incumbent government has failed to deliver justice.
6) Since the report of Baqir Najafi Commission has declared Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif and Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaullah responsible for planning the Model Town incident, the APC demands that they and others involved in the crime step down from their positions before January 7, 2018. APC has mutually extended the deadline of December 31, 2017, to January 7, 2018. If resignations are not given by January 7, the steering committee will organise a meeting on January 8 and decide the next course of action for protest.
7) APC demands that all provincial assemblies and Senate get resolutions approved regarding the resignation demands of Punjab CM Shehbaz Sharif and Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaullah.
8) Two FIRs of the Model Town incident are filed and the Punjab government constituted two joint investigation teams (JIT) on the issue. These JITs could not record the statements from families of the victims, killed and injured, in the incident. This means that the martyrdom has not been recorded in any of the two JITs. The law required statements from the complainant and victims for the sake of fair trial. Therefore, the APC demands the chief justice of Pakistan to form a JIT taking suo motu notice on the incident which was against humanity, state, and the public. The APC also demands that a judge of the Supreme Court monitors the JIT.
9) APC demands that no NRO be given — under internal or external pressure — to the Sharif family, which has looted the national wealth. The public will not accept it if relief of any sort is given to the Sharif family.
10) APC has constituted a committee to decide the next course of action on the deadline, which will be called the Steering Committee of APC. The committee will have the authority to take action in case of an emergency. The Steering Committee will have the following members: Pakistan Peoples Party, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, Awami Muslim League, Majlis Wahdat-e-Muslimeen, Pak Sarzameen Party, Muslim Conference. Pakistan Awami Tehreek Secretary General Khurram Nawaz Gandapur will be the coordinator of the committee and Sardar Mohammad Lateef Khosa will be the legal adviser of the Steering Committee.