Pakistani protest leader Imran Khan, right, listens as protest leader Tahir-ul-Qadri addresses supporters during the anti-government march in Islamabad yesterday. Pakistan's interior minister slammed violent anti-government protests as a "revolt against the state" as lawmakers backed beleaguered Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. Photo: AFP
Embattled Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on late Monday said he will neither resign nor go on leave, even as anti-government protesters led by Imran Khan and Tahirul Qadri continue to mount pressure on him to step down.
The statement came as reports claimed that Pakistan's powerful army chief General Raheel Sharif on Monday advised Sharif to step down during a meeting.
After the TV channel reports, both the government and military issued separate denials, dismissing the claims as "baseless".
Duniya TV reported that Gen Sharif has asked the PM Sharif to resign for a temporary three-month period as demanded by protesters to let an independent commission probe alleged rigging in last year's general election.
Addressing a meeting of leaders of political parties here, Nawaz said he would not allow to set a precedent under which a few people make hostage mandate of millions of people.
"We have rule of constitution here and we will not allow any one to abrogate it," The Express Tribune quoted Nawaz as saying.
Following the meeting a joint declaration pointed out that future of Pakistan is linked with democracy and any deviation can be dangerous for federation of Pakistan.
The leaders expressed their firm resolve that they stand by the Prime Minister in the struggle to defend the democracy.
All parliamentary parties decided to become party to the petition filed in the Supreme Court for supremacy of the parliament, Radio Pakistan reported.
The leaders strongly condemned attacks on the parliament, Prime Minister House and PTV.
"These attacks are attacks on democracy and state," they said.
Meanwhile, hearing a set of petitions against sit-ins by the PTI and PAT on the Constitution Avenue, the Pakistan Supreme Court yesterday issued notices to all parliamentary parties as well as the PAT.
The notices were issued after petitioner Zulfiqar Naqvi pleaded to the court that all parliamentary parties be summoned so the deadlock can be resolved.