Shehbaz will be ‘put to test’ through confidence vote: Imran

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Imran Khan

PDM directs MPs to reach Islamabad

PTI chief Imran Khan has said that his party has decided to put Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif to test through “different plans” which includes confidence vote in parliament.

The PTI chief said this in an interview with a news channel on Saturday.

“Certainly, we will fully test him [Shehbaz Sharif]. He tested us here [in Punjab]. Now it’s his turn to face the music,” he said while responding to a question if his party can ask the premier to obtain confidence vote.

The deposed premier, who was ousted from power in April this year via a vote of no-confidence moved by the then opposition, said decision about the confidence vote date and other plans to put the incumbent government to test will be taken by the party in Sunday’s meeting.

“We will make a full plan. Not only confidence vote but we have other plans as well to test them [PDM government] for a first time,” he added.

Sources said PTI chief Imran Khan had approved the proposal to ask the PM to obtain a trust vote. “President would shortly advise the PM to obtain a vote of confidence,” the sources added. The PTI, sources said, expected the MQM to step away from voting in favour of the PM.

The MQM has seven seats in the NA. The structure of the NA suggests that the ruling coalition has 180 seats including the seven of the MQM. If the MQM pulls out of alliance, it could lead to the removal of the PM.

President Arif Alvi said on Saturday that he will follow the Constitution if asked to take a “vote of confidence” from PM Shehbaz.

Talking to a news channel, Alvi said the Constitution has clearly mentioned the way forward in such situations.

“This is speculation that they (PTI) will ask [me to ask PM Shehbaz to take a confidence vote] and I will do it,” he said. “Whatever the Constitution says will be the way forward.”

He added that if the president thinks that the legislature does not have confidence in the government, then he can ask for a vote of confidence.

Meanwhile, the Pakistan Democratic Movement led federal government on Saturday directed the parliamentarians including members of the National Assembly and the Senate to reach Islamabad amid political imbroglio.