Following its first power showdown in Gujranwala two days ago, the Opposition’s Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) has geared up again for its second show of power today in Karachi.
Hosted by the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), as it commemorates the 13th anniversary of the Karsaz blasts, today’s event will be held at the Bagh-i-Jinnah – a venue that has stood witness to many a political events of the port city, and the ensuing promises of change.
Besides being addressed by the top PPP leadership, the jalsa will also be attended and addressed by Pakistan Muslim League – Nawaz (PML-N) vice president Maryam Nawaz and Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam Fazl (JUI-F) leader Maulana Fazl-ur-Rehman. Other political party leaders that are a part of the grand democratic alliance are also expected to address today’s event.
Maryam leaves for Karachi
Addressing media personnel on her way to the Lahore airport from Jati Umra, Maryam Nawaz, in reference to a question regarding Prime Minister Imran Khan’s salvo against PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif’s speech at the Gujranwala showdown, said “It was a speech of a person who had lost. Mian Nawaz Sharif did not even address the prime minister; he had said this ‘game’ is above you [PM Imran] and you should stay out of it”.
In response to the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf-led federal government’s dismissal of the event as a ‘failed show of power’, the PML-N vice president said, “The government is unable to see things right now, but it will all be clear to them in a few days”.
The PML-N vice president will also be accompanied by Capt (retd) Safdar, party’s spokesperson Murriyam Aurangzeb and PPP central leader Qamar Zaman Kaira.
The political leaders are expected to reach Karachi at 12:45pm.
The Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) began its countrywide protest campaign against the incumbent government by holding a maiden power show in Gujranwala on Friday, which the opposition termed a “decisive referendum against the incompetent” rulers.
The PDM, comprising around a dozen opposition parties on a joint platform to get rid of the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, was formed last month and had planned six big rallies across the country until December to force the government to call fresh elections.
Top leaders of all major parties, including PML-N Vice President Maryam Nawaz, PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and PDM president and Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) chief Fazlur Rehman, were present at the gathering held at the Jinnah Stadium.
Deposed prime minister Nawaz Sharif also joined the rally via a video link from London, as the leaders continued their speeches.
In their addresses, the heads of the PDM constituent parties fired a broadside against the government and particularly made Prime Minister Imran Khan the target of their trenchant criticism, accusing him of failure in fulfilling the promises he made to the people before the 2018 elections.
A day after the Gujranwala rally, Prime Minister Imran Khan gave a no-holds-barred rejoinder to his political arch-nemesis, Nawaz Sharif, heaping scorn on him for “trying to sow discord in the military, the judiciary, and the government” in an attempt to escape accountability for his massive financial corruption”.