ISLAMABAD - A deadlock has emerged between the government and opposition sides over the preparation of ToRs to investigate the Panama leaks.

In Friday’s meeting of Parliamentary Committee on Panama Papers, opposition members insisted on acceptance of almost all of their ToRs while government side was not ready for it and it also wanted omission of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s name from the ToRs.

The only positive outcome was that both sides agreed to meet again on Monday.

Shah Mehmood Qureshi, who is representing PTI in the committee, confirmed the stalemate saying they had not moved even an inch forward. He put the blame to government side terming it inflexible and non-conforming.

Barrister Aitzaz said the joint opposition had never agreed to withdraw from their demand of probe of the prime minister. All what they had offered was that they would withdraw the name of PM from ToRs provided the inclusion of names of his children – Ms Maryam Nawaz and Hussain Nawaz – in it, and that the probe would start from them.

The PPP senator said they wanted acceptance of the rest of the 15 ToRs prepared by the opposition for omission of prime minister’s name, though it would not bring any change because when the family of PM would come under scrutiny he (prime minister) would automatically come under the spotlight.

Responding to a question, Aitzaz said that opposition parties were united and the news about any rift among them was baseless as the whole nation wanted thorough probe of the Panama Papers revelations and none of the political party could back out from it.

The senator said the probe should start from prime minister’s family and get completed within three months while in rest of the cases the time line of one year should be given.

Qureshi said all what government wanted was eyewash and it did not want to see the real accountability to take place on Panama Papers. He said they just wanted to put the matter in limbo so that corruption of the ruling elite is not exposed.

Zahid replaces Asif: In a related development government has replaced Water and Power Minister Kh Asif by Law Minister Zahid Hamid as committee member.

Zahid attended the first two meetings as ex-officio member but as the opposition objected to it and government was left with no option but to bring him in place of Asif. Being law minister his presence in committee is vital as the people sitting on the other side have top legal brains in their fold, a PML-N source said.