Poll boycott decision depends on government attitude: Nawaz Sharif

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Islamabad, Nov 26 (UNI) Former Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif today said the opposition should use the option of boycotting the general elections in case a level playing field is not provided to it in the electioneering process.

Addressing a press conference in Lahore, Mr Sharif said the opposition did not want to indulge in any confrontation or boycott the polls, but it would be left with no other option if it is pushed to the wall.

''We believe in reconciliation and Pakistan's welfare, not in confrontation; the people at the helm of affairs need to understand the feelings of the people and act according to their aspirations to remove emergency and restore the rule of law in the country,'' the Associated Press of Pakistan quoted PML (N) chief as saying.

He demanded lifting of the Emergency, restoration of the Constitution and reinstatement of the Judiciary as it was before November 3 and said the judicial setup prior to the emergency be allowed to decide the matter of the presidential election.

He said the world powers need to consider that terrorism and extremism can be tackled better with the power of the people and not by strengthening the rule of one individual.

Mr Sharif demanded that restrictions on media should be removed forthwith to ensure peoples' right of free expression.

Praising the struggle of lawyers' community, he said they have always been in the forefront to strengthen the national institutions.

The former Prime Minister returned to Pakistan last evening from Saudi Arabia two months after he was sent back in exile hours after arrival in Islamabad.

He expressed appreciation for the positive attitude of the Saudi kingdom towards Pakistan and its people, and remarked that on personal level he would for ever be indebted to them for their support and help.

Mr Sharif and PPP chairperson Benazir Bhutto filed nomination papers today to contest the upcoming parliamentary elections.


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