The Chairman of Tehreek-e-Minhajul Quran, Dr Tahirul Qadri, is not a candidate for the general election but will accept the challenge of becoming the caretaker prime minister in the nation force him to do so.
Addressing a marathon press conference in Model Town, he tried to dispel certain apprehensions about his movement. “My agenda is restoration of democracy and the Constitution and no force can block the people’s march on Islamabad on January 14”, he added.
He observed, “I am determined not to contest the upcoming election. However, if the participants in my march and the nation as well press me to become the caretaker premier, (which I really don’t want) I will be ready to accept this challenge by doing unprecedented electoral reforms amid massive accountability for the first time in the history of the country.”
Dr Tahirul Qadir further said he and the TMQ had a one-point agenda — the formation of an honest and trustworthy caretaker government after involving all stakeholders. And this should introduce electoral reforms in order to bring a leadership for the country that could represent all segments of society, including journalists, farmers, workers, lawyers and traders.
He said both the armed forces and the judiciary were important part of the country’s democratic and electoral system; there was no harm in taking them on board. “We call military in flood-hit areas, for collection of bills and for several civic issues. Why are we afraid of consulting them on such an important issue,” he said.
Dr Qadri stressed that the long march would be peaceful as the TMQ would not allow anyone to take over the country on the pretext of their march and law and order.
Commenting on rampant corruption in the country, he said it was a major problem and a cause of weakening of state institutions. He quoted a former prime minister of New Zealand, David Lange, as having told him in late 80s about huge kickbacks by a Pakistani premier.
He expressed his confidence in the present judiciary and military leadership, saying both were playing a vital role in saving the democratic system.