Jirga’s fresh proposals revive hope

| Mediators propose replacement of immediate resignation with commitment from PM

ISLAMABAD - In a bid to restore the stalled negotiations between the government and protesting parties, Political Jirga came up with a revised set of proposals requesting all the three sides to show flexibility in their hardened stand on some points so that the ball of negotiations could be set in motion again.
In their fresh proposals Jirga members asked the protesting PTI and PAT to withdraw their demand of immediate resignation of the prime minister and link it to establishment of rigging in 2013 general elections. And, they asked Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to make commitment before the parliament that if rigging charges were proved, he would dissolve the assemblies and announce fresh elections.
Political Jirga after meeting at the residence of Senator Rehman Malik, one of the Jirga members, dispatched 11-point revised proposal in shape of a letter to the prime minister and heads of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf and Pakistan Awami Tehreek.
It was further proposed that a judicial commission would be constituted ‘through an ordinance’ which would also have powers to order criminal proceedings against anyone. Implementation of the recommendations of the judicial commission would be binding on all the three stakeholders as well as the federal and provincial governments.
The timeframe for the judicial commission to accomplish the task would also be fixed with mutual consultation of the parties concerned and it would not exceed 45 days, according to a Jirga member. The commission would be empowered to seek assistance from police officers of its choice, besides local and foreign consultants, for accomplishment of the task.
Talking to media, leader of the Jirga and Amir Jamaat-e-Islami Sirajul Haq expressed the confidence to find an honourable and mutually acceptable solution to the crisis.
In its internal meeting Political Jirga has spruced up their earlier proposal to resolve the issue and the fresh document comprising 11 points was unanimously adopted, Siraj said, He said they hoped to bring the estranged negotiators back to the negotiation table and they would come up with a win-win situation for all.
The Jirga meeting held at the residence of Senator Rehman Malik was attended by Sirajul Haq, Rehman Malik, Mir Hasil Bizinjo, Kalsoom Parveen and Ghazi Gulab Jamal. It reviewed progress in government’s negotiations with PTI and PAT.
Both the PTI and PAT leaders complained to the Jirga about the police crackdown on the peaceful demonstrators which was not confined to federal capital as their supporters and activists were subjected to harassment and arrests in other cities of Punjab as well. They made it clear to the Jirga members that before the release of their innocent activists and workers they would not resume talks with government, a source informed The Nation.
Informed sources revealed that Political Jirga members would likely meet the protesting parties’ representatives any time to have their reflection on their fresh set of proposals and to carve out some way forward. Members of the Political Jirga revealed that almost all issues were resolved and they were satisfactorily proceeding forward but the parties were indecisive over the definition of rigging.
Sirajul Haq said that fresh proposals were shown to Leader of Opposition in National Assembly Syed Khursheed Shah before their dispatching to the three parties. He was optimistic about the positive response from all the three stakeholders and hoped that they would show some flexibility in their respective stance on certain issues to let the negotiations succeed and get the whole nation out from the nerve reckoning sit-ins.
Rehman Malik talking to media persons said that the talks between the government and protesting parties were progressing well when all of a sudden the crackdown on the marchers was launched which resulted in the breakup of the process. He expressed the hope that as a confidence building measure government would release all the arrested workers of both these parties who are not involved in any heinous crime so that conducive atmosphere for talks could be established.
Malik said that on almost all the points the parties were nearing agreement and the only contentious matter was the definition of rigging and the modus operandi to go about ascertaining it. Another member of the Jirga, Mir Hasil Bizenjo was also upbeat about the restoration of the negotiations and hoped the matter would be resolved once the parties would restart negotiations.

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