Gilgit-Baltistan: Present System is not Working, Country needs an Interim Setup, Pervez Musharraf

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Karachi (P.Today): Former president General (r) Pervez Musharraf has said that the current political system is not helping the country out. Speaking in an interview, the retired general said, “People have tried and tested the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) which failed to deliver and now the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) isn’t faring any better.”

Musharraf did not have much hope from Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf leader Imran Khan either. He said that no matter how many elections you have in Pakistan “we will eventually end up having the same people getting elected”. He believed that country desperately needs some form of an interim setup for an extended period of time, with a solid backing of the military. He said that the days of military coup in Pakistan are now over. He nodded his approval on the Tahirul Qadri’s movement.

He expressed the belief that the war on terror cannot be won till madrassas are incorporated in the modern schooling system. He proudly mentioned some of the strict steps he had taken against madrassas by amending their curriculum and making them more mainstream.

SRI LANKA NEW VISA POLICY SHOCKS MUSHARRAF: Musharraf was shocked after hearing the news that Sri Lanka was withdrawn on-arrival visa facility from Pakistanis. Narrating an incident of the Sri Lankan civil war, Musharraf said Sri Lankan President Chandrika Kumaratunga had called him to help the Sri Lankan soldiers who were trapped somewhere near the Jaffna peninsula and were under attack from the Tamil Tigers. He said Pakistan had promptly sent all possible help in the form of arms, ammunition and technical expertise to help the Sri Lankans.

THE GENERAL-JUSTICE CONNECTION: Musharraf joked about the appointment of Arsalan Iftikhar as Balochistan Board of Interest (BBOI) vice chairman, saying that a national treasure like Reqo Diq was placed at Arsalan’s disposal for exploitation.

His regretted that exports worth many millions of dollars were stopped in 2012 and Tythian Gold and Antofagasta were not allowed to carry out their job. He said that he met Tythian Gold president in London after the annulment of the deal by former chief justice of Pakistan Justice (r) Iftikhar Chaudhry, adding that the company president was “disappointed” on what was going on in Pakistan.

The general shed some light on the Pakistan Steel deal and shared the plan of what al Tawarqi (the winning party) was supposed to do with Pak Steel in terms of further investment and exports.

When asked if there was any discussion between the then judiciary and himself before the announcement of the decision, Musharraf smiled and said the details (which he will not share) were shocking on ground of how much aligned Musharraf, Iftikhar Chaudhary and the Attorney General were on the pro-privatisation judgement which was supposed to come. However, the ultimate judgement was totally the opposite. Musharraf said he would share the reason for this in the sequel of his book “In the Line of Fire”.

He said the text of the sequel would be completed once the judgement of the ongoing trails especially the Article 6 case, is out.

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