ISLAMABAD   -   A day after the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) agreed to form a committee to finalise the “charter of economy” in consultation with the opposition, the parties said that Prime Minister Imran Khan should directly take them into confidence over the proposal. Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday in a meeting of the party’s core group had agreed to the proposal from major opposition parties, Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), that a charter of economy could be signed with the government in the greater national interest to bring the country out of the present economic crunch.

The PM had given his approval to the Speaker National Assembly Asad Qaiser to form a special committee to finalise the charter in consultations with the opposition. Co-chairman Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Asif Ali Zardari while talking to reporters in the parliament on Saturday said that PM first should give his concept of charter of economy. “Then we will talk with our party and the other opposition parties on the issue,” he said. About a question that Speaker National Assembly’s announcement to form the committee, he said that Speaker Office did not represent the government rather it was considered to be neutral.

To another question that the government was taking the impression from his recent speech in the NA that perhaps co-chairman was seeking NRO like deal to save his skin from corruption cases, he said: “If I had not asked for an NRO since last eight years, why would I ask for it now?”

Separately, senior PPP leader Khursheed Shah and PML-N leader as well as former speaker NA Sardar Ayaz Sadiq met Chief Whip of PTI in the National Assembly Aamir Dogar in the presence of State Minister for Parliamentary Affairs Ali Muhammad Khan and conveyed their demand to them. Both conveyed to them that the PM should take the opposition into confidence on the matter and contact them directly. They also said that the government should not consider their proposal of charter of democracy as their weakness.

Leader of Opposition in the National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif on Wednesday had said on the floor of the house that the opposition could sign with the government the “charter of economy” to steer the country out of present financial vows. He said that his party was ready to sign this charter on the patter on charter of democracy a document signed between PPP and PML-N in London in 2006 to end the military rule and restore civilian and democratic setup in Pakistan.

Former president Asif Ali Zardari had also given a proposal of charter of economy an idea that was also endorsed by lawmakers of opposition and the treasury in the Senate as well.

Earlier on Friday night, Speaker National Assembly Speaker Asad Qaiser said Prime Minister Imran Khan had agreed to form a committee on a ‘charter of economy’. He made the announcement after participating in the core group meeting of the party. Senior PTI leaders and federal ministers including Asad Umar, Dr Shireen Mazari, Pervaiz Khattak, Murad Saeed, Shafqat Mahmood, Fawad Chaudhry, Ali Zaidi, and Arshad Dad attended the meeting headed by PM Imrn Khan. Chief Minister Punjab Sardar Usman Buzdar and Deputy Speaker NA Qasim Khan Suri were also among the participants.

Speaker NA took to the Twitter to make the announcement, the NA speaker said that different legislative, political and economic issues were discussed with PM in the meeting. “PM agreed on constitution of special committee on charter of economy to cope with economic challenges. We will get the opposition onboard for this greater cause of our country,” he said. “This special committee for the economy will consider only current economic conditions and will propose solutions. I hope that government and all opposition parties will contribute in their best for country’s greater cause,” he added in another tweet.

An office-bearer of PTI said that the committee will include members of all political parties and from the Senate and the NA. The committee will consider proposals of all political parties to bring the country’s economy on the right track, he added.