ISLAMABAD - The Parliamentary Committee to frame terms of reference for Panama Papers revelations probe was virtually made redundant by both the government and opposition sides as they are opting for other options to get their point of view materialised on probe into the scandal.

After getting disappointed by what they termed stubborn attitude of the government team members on devising terms of reference for probe into the Panama papers revelations, the opposition parties decided to exploit other options to bring the Prime Minister and his family members in the accountability net on alleged money laundering and making properties abroad beyond their known sources of income.

Ch. Aitzaz Ahsan, architect of the opposition parties tailored terms of reference for the Panama Papers probe, said that the whole government side was busy protecting the Prime Minister from accountability so they could not accept any probe mechanism which would bring the Prime Minister in the accountability net.

He said that it was the government side which had pushed them to look for other options to get the issue of Panama Papers resolved through other means. He said that they had eight sittings with the government side on devising terms of reference for Panama leaks probe but despite showing lot of flexibility by the opposition side the government team was not ready to accept even the single point of initiating probe from Prime Minister and his family.

Aitzaz Ahsan said that the opposition had accepted 75 percent of ToRs of the government but the other side showed zero flexibility as it had not even considered any of their proposals.

Pointing out the dichotomy on part of government, Aitzaz said that on one hand the prime minister had presented himself for accountability not once but thrice but on the other hand his lieutenants were not ready to even consider inclusion of Nawaz Sharif and his family members in the Panama leaks probe.

He said the opposition was in agreement that an Act of Parliament should be approved for inquiry into the Panama affair but the government draft of the bill was useless. He said they favour across the board accountability but this should begin from the prime minister and his family. He charged that the government wanted division in the opposition ranks but they stand united.

The Federal Cabinet yesterday gave approval to replace the Pakistan Commissions of Inquiry Act 1956, declared obsolete and ineffective by the Supreme Court of Pakistan as well.

While quickly reacting to the move of the Federal Government, Pakistan People’s Party had also tabled a bill in the Upper House of the Parliament to devise a special act to investigate all those holding offshore companies and their names were revealed in the Panama papers revelations.

These moves on part of both government and opposition parties had virtually made the Parliamentary committee on terms of reference for Panama Papers a deadwood despite the reiteration from government side that it was ready to engage opposition into meaningful dialogue on ToRs but their acts were contrary to their claims.