People expect ‘neutrality’ from courts

PTI senior leader Fawad Chaudhry on Thursday said that the people of the country expected “transparent decisions” from the courts, asking the judiciary to function “independently” as he expressed his concerns over the “widening gap” between the institutions and the masses.

“We believe that our court should take decisions independently, especially in the Arshad Sharif case […] the expectations we have from the judicial system […] the independent decisions we are expecting from them […] we don’t see it happening,” the PTI leader said while addressing media in Lahore.

PTI Central Punjab General Secretary Hamad Azhar and provincial government’s spokesperson Mussarat Jamshed Cheema were also present on the occasion.
Referring to the arrest of Senator Azam Swati, Fawad maintained that the treatment meted out to the PTI during the last few months was a matter of concern for the party.

“Because of this, we can feel a distance between the institutions of Pakistan and the public. PTI is the only political party in the country […] (PTI Chairman) Imran Khan is the only [leader] that plays the role of a bridge between the state and the nation and it is important that this role should be accepted,” he said.

Fawad said “unfortunately no change” was witnessed in the policy of establishment and the Election Commission of Pakistan.

“State institutions could not make them apolitical. The role of the establishment and judiciary since the regime change operation has not been apolitical.”

“We want to make Pakistan a prosperous democratic state where all state institutions would bow before the will of the people, otherwise, there is no future of the country,” he observed.

Fawad said the election supervisor was hearing the PTI cases but had given a “free hand” to the plunderers who had given themselves another NRO.
He said the people of the country expected “transparent decisions” from the courts.

Commenting on his party’s stance, Fawad stressed that there was a “complete consensus” among the PTI that provincial assemblies of Punjab and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa would be dissolved during the current month.

Responding to a question, he said that Punjab Chief Minister Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi had only expressed his view to delay the dissolution of the Punjab Assembly, adding that the PML-Q leader had repeatedly assured that he would abide by whatever decision the PTI chairman made about the fate of provincial assembly.

He underscored that the PML-Q was the main ally of the PTI in Punjab besides an independent political party.

“It is the prerogative of the PML-Q leadership to contest upcoming elections with or without the PTI,” he said while responding to another media query.

Meanwhile, PTI’s Azhar said that a delegation of businessmen from Lahore met the PTI chief and apprised him about their concerns on the uncertainty in the markets.

“We were receiving reports of closure of businesses and industries and laying-off workers. The situation is worse than we saw during the Covid-19 pandemic days,” he said.

According to the former federal minister, the traders revealed that dollar was not easily available in the open market while they could not import spare parts, raw material and other products, as the banks were refusing to issue letter of credit to them.

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