Islamabad, Mar.11 (ANI): Fears of return of military rule or a change of regime in Pakistan gained momentum on Wednesday after a report in Fox News indicated a source as telling it that President Asif Ali Zardari, who is in Tehran for a regional economic conference and is expected to proceed to his former home in exile Dubai, may not return to Pakistan in the short term if tensions continue to rise or perhaps in the longer term if the political situation slides into chaos.
The rumour mill went into overdrive after Pakistan Army chief Kayani met with Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani to discuss the volatile political situation in the country, and the British High Commissioner to Pakistan Robert Brinkley's meeting with Gilani offering Britain's help to find a way out of the political impasse brought about by the stand-off between Nawaz Sharif and Zardari over the restoration of judges issue, that has all but paralysed governance over the past few weeks.
On Tuesday, matters to ahead after the PPP branded Nawaz's call for revolution as a 'mutiny' and subsequently ordered a crackdown on officials and supporters of PML-N and in bid to halt the threatened to long march of lawyers' to Islamabad to demand the restoration of judges, which has been Sharif's major demand since return of civilian rule in Pakistan.
Addressing a massive rally today, Sharif called upon people to overthrow the disastrous regime of Zardari, whom he claimed was leading Pakistan towards destruction.
According to the Fox News report, if the situation deteriorated further, a reluctant army could also become involved and call for the government itself to be replaced. Constitutionally the chairman of the Senate would then become acting president and call elections.
hile there has been no official confirmation of the severity of the crisis from official sources, the next 48 hours may prove to be decisive in Pakistan's chequered history as a democracy. (ANI)