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TAXILA: Minister for Aviation Ghulam Sarwar Khan dispelled the impression that there was deadlock between government and coalition over use of electronic voting machines (EVMs) in the next general elections which led to cancellation of the joint session of the parliament.

He was talking to newsmen after inaugurating different development projects in Jameelabad area on Friday.

“Even the ministry which introduced the voting machine is headed by MQM, one of the coalition partners, and there is no deadlock between the government and its coalition parties,” said Mr Khan.

He further clarified that the joint session of the parliament was delayed as some of the party leaders were of the view that they wanted to take opposition parties into confidence over the issue and they wanted some time for consultation which led to cancellation of joint sitting of parliament.

He said Prime Minister Imran Khan during last week also took the government’s coalition partners into confidence on the convening of a joint session of parliament for legislation regarding electoral reforms and other important issues.

He said the PTI government, under its electoral reforms package, plans to hold the next elections through EVMs, give overseas Pakistanis the right to vote and conduct Senate elections on open ballots.

Mr Khan expressed the hope that the coalition partners would support the legislation on transparent elections.

Responding to a question about not making public the government- Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) agreement, he said the points made in the agreement are not made public due to “best public interest”.

Responding to a question, he said he foresees no threat from the anti government drive of Pakistan Development Movement (PDM) adding that the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) government would not only complete its constitutional term.

Responding to a question regarding challenges faced by the government, he said that although price hike was an international phenomenon, the PTI government was trying to bring down the prices particularly of food items.

He said that all out efforts were being made to provide relief to the citizens as Prime Minister Imran Khan weekly chairs meeting to review prices of essential commodities and solid steps were being taken to control prices.

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