ISLAMABAD - On the 14th day of their sit-ins, Chairman Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Imran Khan and Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) chief Dr Tahirul Qadri postponed for another 24 hours their next plans of action on the intervention of Army Chief General Raheel Sharif who ensured them to broker a deal with the government.

The tensions and the speculations were high in the capital from the last Wednesday night after the talks between the two protesting parties - PTI and PAT and the government - faced a deadlock. 

The situation remained tense from Thursday morning and even key federal ministers in front of the Parliament House humbly asked the protesting parties to call of their sit-in for the sake of the state and the system. The speculations were also rife in the capital that the government was considering to impose curfew in the Red Zone if the protesting parties announced any ‘violent step’ as part of their next plan of action.

However, the mood of the exhausted capital relaxed on Thursday night when PTI chief Imran Khan came on his custom-made container and said, “I have decided to postpone my next plan of action for 24 hours on the call of COAS General Raheel Sharif.”

He said the government had requested the army chief to play its role for the negotiations.

“Now army chief has conveyed to me to postpone my next step for another 24 hours till tomorrow, he has sought some time and asked me to talk. We should talk for the country and we will talk,” he added.

“I, on the call of General Raheel Sharif, am not announcing my next plan of action for next 24 hours for the sake of talks,” he explained.

Khan said, “I will talk but your captain will not disappoint you and tomorrow either we will have our celebrations of independence here or I will have to give a call that I was going to give today.”

According to insiders of PTI, the party chief had decided to give a wheel jam strike call throughout the country to press the government to meet his demand of resignation as part of his next plan f action. Imran Khan also held a meeting with the senior party leadership in this regard. Khan asked his supporters to have patience till today (Friday) and stay there. “I will give you a good news tomorrow and we will celebrate throughout the night,” he said.

Khan said they would not withdraw from their demands until they would get justice, surety for re-election and make those people hold accountable who rigged the polls. “Either we will celebrate here tomorrow or the movement will take a new turn,” he concluded.

Soon after his announcement, Khan came out of his container and left the sit-in venue to meet the army chief . The senior leader of PTI including Jehangir Tareen, Pervez Khattak and others were with him. Dr Qadri who was waiting for the army’s intervention for long finally succeeded to drag it in to broker a deal.  Qadri, in his other day’s speech, had announced that he will not keep his followers sitting in front of parliament. Certain quarters believe that speech was addressing the establishment that if it did not intervene now, he will leave the ground and finally he succeeded to deliver his message.

On Thursday army offered to broker a deal between all the parties that consequently proved the supremacy of military establishment in the country while putting the democratic system in a position to do nothing without the consent of real rulers.

Dr Qadri in front of his followers announced, “Army has accepted to assume the role of a mediator between us and the government”. He, while making speech to his followers, said, “These are the sacrifices of my followers that forced the army to jump in”. He asked his followers that whether or not they will stay for another day and the answer he got was ‘yes’. Dr Qadri told his followers that army had sought a time of 24 hours so if they would allow him, he would give them some time and the crowd again gave him go ahead for the purpose.

He said the army would be responsible to implement the deal done between him, Imran Khan and the government. About expected points of deal, interestingly he did not mention about the resignation of prime minister but he repeated the demand of FIR and a transparent investigation into the Model Town tragedy.

In his speech, Qadri said the government finally knelt down in front of Pakistan Army and presented it as an achievement in front of his followers.  Dr whereas told his followers again that if their demands were not met and they did not succeed in their mission, they would do what they had earlier planned to do.