LAHORE - The PML-N leadership decided to safeguard the democratic system without confronting with the PTI and PAT activists protesting against the government in Islamabad.

The informal meeting held at Raiwind was presided over Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and attended by Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif, Federal Minister for Finance Ishaaq Dar, and Interior Minister Ch Nisar Ali Khan.

According to the party sources, the meeting reiterated its resolve not to succumb to the PTI and PAT demands about the PM’s resignation. It also reviewed the political situation emerged after the two-week long sit-ins of the parties. It was decided not make use of force action against the PTI and PAT workers no matter how long their protests continue.

The PM informed the meeting about his Thursday’s meeting with the army chief. The PML-N leadership also looked into the situation after registration of the case against the prime minister, chief minister and others of Model Town incident. The meeting discussed rejection of the FIR by the PAT Chairman and his demand for incorporating ATA sections therein.

Sources said the interior minister on the basis of documents told the participants about the current volume of the dharna, its spread and other allied matters. They further said the MQM is in constant contact with the government to turn it back to talks with the PAT and the PTI, and the meeting also mulled that point with a view to estimate its efficacy. They said the meeting did not drop the negotiations option as well as any peaceful means which resolved the crisis within the constitutional and legal framework.

The meeting also looked into the strategy of dealing the PTI and PAT through a single strategy. They further said the finance minister informed the participants of the financial loss of around Rs1000 so far caused to the national economy due to current political turmoil, and discussed the means to arrest further damage. Sources said that more rounds of meeting are expected with participation of other big guns of the party to review various means wherein the demand for the CM resignation to defuse the tension may also come under consideration.

N leaders to get pre-arrest bails: The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz leaders decided to get pre-arrest bail from the Lahore High Court in the Model Town incident case registered against them.

The sources said that the leadership decided to hire famous lawyer Khwaja Haris as their counsel in the case. However, when contact, Khwaja Haris denied the news item saying he neither knew anything about it nor anybody contacted him in this regard.

On the other hand, the Lahore High Court had also made it clear in its order that registration of the FIR did not mean that the accused were real guilty and be taken into custody of police.

The LHC also maintained the verdict of the lower court wherein police were directed to lodge criminal case against Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif, former law minister Rana Sanaulah, Dr Tauqeer Shah and others for their alleged involvement in the Model Town incident.

On Thursday, police registered FIR against PM Nawaz Sharif, Punjab CM Shahbaz Sharif, former law minister Rana Sanaullah, former principal secretary to CM Dr Tauqeer Shah and others.