Islamabad, Apr 16: PPP co-Chairman Asif Ali Zardari and PML-N leader Nawaz Sharif yesterday for nearly two hours, but failed to achieve any breakthrough on judges restoration issue.
According to those privy to the meeting, PPP proposed that the tenure of chief justices must be fixed, somewhat similar to that for services chiefs. Without committing anything, Nawaz Sharif reportedly sought time to consult his party about the proposal. Awami National Party (ANP) president Asfandyar Wali was also present on the occasion. ANP is the smallest of the parties in the present PPP-led coalition government in Islamabad. The trio is learnt to have decided to hold a series of meetings on the issue, reported the Daily Times.
The three coalition leaders also held a separate 30-minute meeting without the presence of aides, added the paper. After the meeting, Information Minister Sherry Rehman said in a statement, "the coalition renewed its commitment to the Bhurban declaration. The meeting was one of a series that the coalition intends to have regularly."
Meanwhile, a PML-N source said after the meeting: "A resolution [to restore the judges] will be moved in parliament before April 30." However, a PPP source claimed that the resolution could be delayed until the next session of the National Assembly. "There are minor differences over the issue of fixing the tenure of the supreme and high court chief justices," he said, adding that the PPP wanted the chief judges' tenure to be fixed for three to four years. Besides the restoration of the sacked judges, the meeting also discussed the war on terror, violence in Karachi and Lahore, and protests in Multan.