Speculations suggest government might withdraw from Punjab elections; Marriyum Aurangzeb rejects news and reports

After the verdict of Supreme Court of Pakistan to hold Punjab elections on May 14, the coalition government openly disagreed with it and maintained a stance not to comply with the decision. As a result, sources and media reports from Islamabad started to claim that the federal government and its allies are planning to withdraw their nomination papers to boycott the Punjab polls. However, Minister for Information & Broadcasting Marriyum Aurangzeb has strongly turned down the speculations.

According to the reports, Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N), and Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (JUI-F) had vowed not to take part in the Punjab elections. While talking to the media, Marriyum rejected the news and said the reports that coalition government is withdrawing its nomination have no truth in them. The federal minister said that no decision of such kind has been made. She claimed that all media reports are fabricated.

Marriyum added that government would fight against Imran Khan and termed him a watch thief, violator of the constitution, troublemaker, and a foreign agent.

On April 4, a three-member bench of the apex court led by Chief Justice Pakistan Umar Ata Bandial turned down the decision of ECP to delay the Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa elections till October 8. The bench, which also included Justice Munib Akhtar and Justice Ijaz Ul Ahsan, directed the elections watchdog to hold Punjab elections on May 14.

Punjab elections were earlier scheduled to be held on April 30. But on March 22, the ECP announced that due to rising terrorist attacks, low numbers of security personnel, and economic crisis, it was not possible to organise elections in the province.

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