Despite Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and the ruling coalition’s efforts to persuade Maulana Fazlur Rehman’s party to participate in potential talks with the PTI, the JUI-F remains opposed.
Almost all parties in the ruling coalition have expressed a willingness to end the political gridlock by negotiating with the PTI, but according to information that the JUI-F is proving to be a more difficult nut to crack, despite efforts, particularly by the PPP leadership.
According to Information Minister Marriyum Aurangzeb, another round of intra-coalition negotiations will be placed on Wednesday (today).
The conference, to be presided over by PM Shehbaz, will discuss the potential of discussions with the opposition PTI, the Supreme Court judgment, and the date set by the top court for the Punjab elections.
Fazl will not participate, according to the spokesperson, even if the ruling coalition agrees to hold talks with the PTI.
However, convincing the chairman of the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) will be difficult for the prime minister. Although Maulana had stated unequivocally that he would not participate in the conversation with the PTI, his party will also meet coalition partners today at 2 p.m.
According to JUI-F spokesman Aslam Ghauri, the party leadership would examine the judiciary’s attitude and the possibility of discussions with the PTI at the meeting.
He said, however, that the JUI-F leader has “decided not to sit in talks with Imran Khan-led PTI, even if the government goes ahead with the dialogue” as ordered by the Supreme Court.
When asked what the JUI-F’s reaction would be if a dialogue was established, the spokesperson stated, “In that case, we will decide our future line of action.”
Marriyum Aurangzeb, the Information Minister, confirmed this, stating the JUI-F has not committed to discussions with the PTI.
PML-N parliamentary meeting
On Wednesday, the PML-N will convene a parliamentary committee meeting in Parliament House, followed by a federal cabinet meeting.
PM Shehbaz will also preside over a meeting of the ruling parties at the Prime Minister’s House, where coalition partners are likely to deliberate on their next course of action in relation to negotiations with the PTI and the subject of “confrontation” with the court over Punjab elections.
According to a governing alliance source, the government will determine whether to stand firm in its fight with the judiciary or choose for confrontation by ignoring the negotiation with the PTI, as well as what posture to take on Punjab elections if it agrees to hold talks with the opposition party.