Sheikh terms first round of talks with TLP leadership as ‘very good’

APP04-241021 ISLAMABAD: October 24 - Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed addressing a press conference on TLP. APP

ISLAMABAD, Oct 24 (APP):Minister for Interior, Sheikh Rashid Ahmed on Sunday terming the first round of dialogue with the leadership of Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) as ‘very good’ and ‘hopeful’, directed the administration of Rawalpindi and Islamabad to remove all containers from the roads to ensure smooth public movement.

Addressing a press conference, Sheikh Rashid said, “It is our desire and endeavour to resolve the law and order situation as early as possible while settling all matters through negotiations.”

He said that it was decided to return back their cases by Tuesday or Wednesday besides looking into schedule-four matters.

He said that he repeated his stance in front of them that Pakistan was facing several international and national challenges and successfully handling these matters and assured them that their one demand will be moved to the Parliament for making a commitment on it with the involvement of Speaker National Assembly.

He said that TLP negotiating team members will come to the Ministry of Interior on Monday at 10:00 am to continue talks.

“We will make efforts to resolve all outstanding issues to come to a positive end.” He said that their complaint about not giving any positive response for the last six months was true. “I also met with Saad Rizvi to have a detailed discussion with him”, he added.

The minister said that TLP people will stay in Muridke Tuesday evening. The government will try to manage the situation by that time, he added. He said that out of 7,000 arrested people of TLP during the last protest now only 176 were in jails.

“They have right to make any claim being a party, however, officially there is no any report of any causality of their work.” Sheikh said, “Being a political worker, I am ready to hold talks with any political party.”

He, however, said that opposition parties failed to get the support of the general public of the country on the issue of inflation as these all were all their political stunts.

He said that there should be no confrontation as holding protests was the right of political parties. “Our responsibility is to ensure a calmer atmosphere rather than creating confrontation.”

He said that all outstanding issues should be resolved and roads should be opened for students, patients, and the general public.

A joint supervisory committee will be formed to jointly manage the administrative matters of Rawalpindi and Islamabad, he added. Replying to a question he said,” Our utmost effort should be to resolve the matter so that those sitting in Muridke return back to their homes and we take their demands seriously.”

He said that he had to return back to Pakistan from UAE skipping the Pakistan-India T20 World Cup match as he was called back by the Prime Minister Imran Khan to hold talks with TLP. Sheikh Rashid said that presently there was no any restriction on any political activity while there was an open political discussion on all media.

He said, “the opposition has been saying since December last year that PTI is going to lose power, but it should clear any misunderstanding about the government.” The present government of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) will complete its tenure and that the government was successfully running the state affairs, he added.