Opposition leader, PM Shehbaz to meet on August 1 to discuss caretaker setup

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    A crucial meeting between the Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly, Raja Riaz, and Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif will be held around August 1. During this meeting, they will discuss potential candidates for the caretaker Prime Minister ahead of the upcoming elections.

    Mr Riaz mentioned that they would recommend three names each for the caretaker Prime Minister, and if they fail to agree on a name, the matter will be referred to the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP). The ECP will then select a name from the six proposed candidates.

    There have been speculations about the interim setup and concerns about the involvement of controversial figures. The consultation process between the Prime Minister and the opposition leader appears to be a mere formality, given the lack of a strong opposition in the National Assembly.

    Riaz, who is a PTI dissident, revealed that a group of PTI dissidents would also be formed. Regarding the dissolution of assemblies, he stated that according to the information he had, the assemblies would be dissolved on August 8, four days before the end of their term on August 12.

    Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has announced that the government will hand over the reins to a caretaker setup in August. However, confusion remains about whether the coalition partners will go for normal dissolution or advise the president for an early dissolution.

    Various coalition party leaders have made contradictory statements about the timing of the general elections. The Election Commission of Pakistan has assured that they are fully prepared for elections and will hold them by October 11 if the National Assembly is dissolved on August 12.