KHARIAN -  Rebuffing the statement of former army chief General (r) Aslam Beg, Information Minister Qamar Zaman Kaira has ruled out any possibility of ‘martial law’ in Pakistan.

Addressing a mass matrimony ceremony in Kharian on Thursday, the minister said that it was already quite brave of General (r) Beg that he was facing public after what he had done in the past and advised him to avoid issuing inappropriate statements.

Talking to the media, he said that only people had the right to elect their representatives and the judiciary had nothing to do with the formation of the government.  “General elections are due soon and the masses will hold the rulers accountable for their flaws and elect their representatives for next five years”, he added.

According to the Constitution of Pakistan, Parliament is the supreme institution as it represents the will of the people and is directly answerable to the public, he added.

Kaira said that in modern states powers were shared by various institutions.

“The president, the prime minister, the army chief and the chief justice exercise power as defined in the constitution and all the institutions work within the constitutional parameters,” he added.

To a question, he said that the Supreme Court could pass verdict only on the matters brought before it through petitions. In some cases the president has the powers of clemency, he added. The minister said that the media enjoyed complete freedom and the government did not twist its arms through regulatory authority, as the Pakistan People’s Party had always stood for freedom of press. He, however, asked the media to show responsibility and avoid sensationalism while reporting, adding that an impression was being given by some corners of the media as if there was confrontation between institutions, which was baseless.

The army chief has only said that the accused should not be treated as convict and there should not be media trial of any one, he added.

“The media should avoid trying national institutions while discussing the acts of individuals and the talk show hosts should abstain from passing judgments”, the minister said.