–Foreign minister says there’s no threat to constitutional rights of provinces and democracy
MULTAN: Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi on Saturday dismissed concerns raised by the opposition parties regarding the 18th Amendment, saying there was no threat to provinces’ constitutional rights.
On Friday, Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari had said that the 18th Amendment was in danger as it was being attacked from different sides, but all opposition parties were firm in their resolve to foil these attacks.
He reiterated his concerns on Saturday during a visit to the Karachi Press Club.
“The 18th Amendment is being attacked,” Bilawal said. “This amendment came into existence through a lot of struggle. Shaheed Bhutto’s 1973 Constitution was reinstated. Now the reinstated Constitution is under attack from the government and other places.
“The PPP cannot tolerate this. We will struggle at all fora and go into review on some decisions. Our institutions are being prised away. For this, even if I have to do a long march I would do one.”
Hours later, Qureshi, while talking to reporters at Kotla Mahar in Multan, said that opposition parties are making undue hue and cry as there was no threat to the 18th Amendment, constitutional rights of the provinces and democracy.
However, he said that there could be threat to personal interests of some individuals.
The foreign minister said that the PTI government had immense respect for constitutional rights of the provinces.
Qureshi further stated that the federal government would not make any effort to dislodge the PPP government, adding that the real threat to the Sindh administration was not from the PTI but from its poor governance and corruption.
Talking about Pakistan’s relations with India, Qureshi said that Pakistan was ready to work with the next Indian government.
“Elections in India are its internal matter and Pakistan has no role in this regard,” he said.
Qureshi lamented that India had made an issue out of his telephonic conversation with Kashmiri leader Mirwaiz Umar Farooq. “We want to resolve Kashmir dispute through dialogue but India is making undue hue and cry over the matter,” he said.