ISLAMABAD - The opposition Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Wednesday stressed that the courts couldn’t dictate the President and the governor in the functioning of their constitutional duties and the present Punjab Assembly couldn’t sustain for a longer time in the given circumstances.

Former information minister and PTI leader Fawad Chaudhry said this while reacting to the decision of the Lahore High Court (LHC) instructing Punjab Governor Omar Sarfraz Cheema to ensure completion of the process of administering oath to Chief Minister-elect Hamza Shehbaz till April 28 (Friday). Addressing a press conference here along with party leader Zulfi Bukhari, he said that the governor Punjab has given clear evidence that unfair means were used in the election of Punjab chief minister and has asked the President to give his view on it. Now, President Dr Arif Alvi and the Ministry of Law have to take a final decision whether the election was legal or not, he added.

Criticises judiciary for extending alleged out of turn favour to Chief Minister-elect Hamza Shehbaz

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Chaudhry said that Punjab Assembly couldn’t sustain for a longer time because Chief Minister-elect Hamza Shehbaz has to get a vote of no-confidence from the assembly within a month after taking oath of his office. The ruling party might not have the required 186 number for this purpose as Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) would have de-seated 26 disgruntled MPAs of the PTI by that time, he also said. He criticised the judiciary for what he said giving out of turn favour to CM-elect Hamza and said that an accused who is supposed to be indicted in a corruption case is being given top priority as his chief minister-ship oath seemed more important than his indictment. The PTI leader alleged that Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif had to cut his “grand” official entourage down to size before leaving for Saudi Arabia under pressure of public and social media. “The government had to take a U-turn under public pressure.” Before this, a letter written by Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) had surfaced saying “the government will have to pay $60,000 to the national flag carrier per day” for this maiden official visit of the coalition government led by Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), he claimed. “This was the biggest policy decision of Sharif administration after coming into power,” he castigated the PML-N. He further said that earlier as many 84 people which also included four cooks were part of the entourage of the prime minister which had to go to perform Umrah at the cost of taxpayers’ money. Chaudhry said that the load-shedding in the country started after two most expensive LNG contracts signed by the then PML-N government defaulted and the government did not divert the local gas system to power plants. He said that the PTI government was going to make a payment of Rs 50 billion to coal-fired power plants, which the incumbent coalition delayed after coming into power. “As a result of this, the coal-fired power plants are now being run at a capacity of one third and reserves of furnace oil are also depleting.” He said that the hoarding of diesel has started in view of likely price hike of petroleum products in the next fortnightly review. Former information minister said that the sole solution to steer the country out of the prevailing constitutional crisis is holding of immediate elections. “At the moment, there is a temporary government in the country which could not take long-term decisions,” he added.