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Wednesday February 01, 2023

Dar looks to Alvi for winning PTI support on IMF programme

Sources say Finance Minister Ishaq Dar called on President Arif Alvi, discussed political strategy, matter of dissolution of assemblies

December 07, 2022
Federal Minister for Finance and Revenue Senator Mohammad Ishaq Dar (right) holds a meeting with President Arif Alvi at Aiwan-e-Sadr in Islamabad, on November 18, 2022. — Presidents Secretariat
Federal Minister for Finance and Revenue Senator Mohammad Ishaq Dar (right) holds a meeting with President Arif Alvi at Aiwan-e-Sadr in Islamabad, on November 18, 2022. — President's Secretariat

In the latest development in government-opposition links, Federal Minister for Finance and Revenue Senator Ishaq Dar has sought President Arif Alvi's help in winning over Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) for the implementation of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) programme, sources privy to the matter said Wednesday.

The finance czar reportedly called on President Dr Arif Alvi and discussed the political and economic affairs of the country. 

As per the sources, a political strategy and the matter of dissolution of assemblies and resignations came under discussion. Moreover, the next general elections were also discussed.

Sources further stated that the finance czar requested the president for PTI's cooperation in bringing political stability to the country and the implementation of Pakistan's agreement with the IMF.

In response, President Alvi promised Dar to raise the matter before the PTI leadership.

The sources said that the two also shared views on the closure of markets by 6pm in the country.

Govt-opposition links

The incumbent government and the Opposition have been holding talks regarding the date of general elections as the PTI has been constantly putting pressure on the government to conduct snap polls.

PTI Chairman Imran Khan has threatened the government with the dissolution of the Punjab and KP assemblies if it does not decide on early elections.

On December 5, PTI Senior Vice President Fawad Chaudhry said if election talks do not bear fruit by December 20, the party would dissolve the provincial assemblies on December 21.

"They [coalition parties in the Centre] are afraid of holding elections as they fear the PTI will win," Fawad said.

Assuring that the PTI had the full support of its ally, Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q), the PTI leader said that Punjab Chief Minister Parvez Elahi and his son Moonis Elahi also want the assembly's dissolution and elections within 90 days after they are dissolved.

"Parvez Elahi and Monis Elahi have assured us that they will dissolve the assembly whenever asked to," the former federal minister said amid the PML-Q leaders' remarks which are in stark contrast to the PTI leadership's stance.

Confirming that the PTI has held talks with the coalition government, Fawad said that Dar held two meetings with President Alvi.

"Dar told the president that [the government] is ready for elections, but they first need to consult Nawaz Sharif," the former information minister revealed.

"Dar said he would consult Nawaz Sharif and inform President Arif Alvi. However, he hasn't responded yet and we are still waiting," he said.

In a press conference earlier, Fawad had confirmed that PTI and the coalition government were indeed holding talks.