LAHORE - Although the PTI’s withdrawal of Islamabad lockdown call met with mixed feelings from within the party and allies, the common man felt a sigh of relief as the tense situation returned to normalcy in Punjab yesterday.

Different political and socio-religious figures, in their separate statements, gave arguments in favour and opposition of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf while the public at large took to social media to share their views.

Some of the PTI leaders who spoke with The Nation on condition of anonymity criticised Imran’s decision but majority welcomed the captain’s call.

Leaders of Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid and Sunni Ittehad Council, which had announced participation in PTI’s Islamabad lock-down, appreciated the Supreme Court’s interference to calm down the situation. But, at the same time, they expressed the resolve to make the prime minister accountable on Panama leak issue by holding massive protests in coming days if the government showed its reluctance to abide by the apex court direction.

Pervaiz Elahi said his party workers were all set to stage a big show along with PTI workers in Islamabad and hundreds of them were already there but the apex court’s direction on Panama Leak provided an opportunity to resolve the issue. Now, he added, it was the responsibility of the government to accept the court direction and present prime minister for accountability. He said the PML-Q would be ready in future to hold protest if Sharif family tried to put the Panama leak matter in backdrop.

He said through interim measures of the Supreme Court on petition about Panama Leaks a ray of hope had risen and PML-Q were determined and hope with full confidence that issue will reach its logical conclusion. Elahi hoped the apex court through fully-empowered Judicial Commission will pull the country out of crisis and the people will get justice.

Sharing the same feeling, SIC chairman Hamid Raza demanded a thorough inquiry on “security leak” issue.

Pakistan Awami Tehreek chairman Dr Tahirul Qadri was apparently unhappy with the PTI’s decision to withdraw protest call, though he said it was Imran Khan’s choice to lock-down the capital. According to him, the situation would only provide relief to the government and Nawaz Sharif would never present himself for accountability.

Jamaat-e-Islami chief Sirajul Haq welcomed the SC decision to set up a judicial commission for Panama leaks enquiry under its own supervision. He said the nation wanted accountability to begin from the present rulers after which Asif Ali Zardari and Gen (r) Pervez Musharraf could also be brought for accountability. The JI chief said that the government had already delayed the matter for seven months and it had not moved any bill against corruption during this time and was still seeking more time from the court which clearly indicated that the rulers wanted to escape accountability.

“We want the Supreme Court not only to investigate the matter, but also punish the plunderers.”

PTI leaders Mahmoodur Rasheed, Ijaz Chaudhary, Aleem Khan and others said millions of supporters, workers and followers of Imran Khan were always ready to follow their chairman’s call, and they would unite to mark ‘Youm-e-Tashakur’ (‘thanksgiving day’) in Islamabad today. They said it was the commitment of PTI to make accountable the Sharifs before the nation.

They said they appreciate the Supreme Court direction on Panama leak issue and now the Sharif family must present itself for accountability on the ToRs formed by united opposition on Panama issue.

Two PTI MPAs, however, seeking anonymity expressed disappointment on Imran Khan’s decision to withdraw the lockdown call, questioning what the benefit of all this exercise was if the party chairman supposed to withdraw the call at eleventh hour.

People took the Twitter and Facebook to give argument in favour and against the PTI decision. A PTI follower, Shahnam Ali tweeted: “Feel sorry for PTI supporters including myself. It was disheartening and heartbreaking.” Anum Intisar tweeted: “So glad that Imran Khan and others have made a wise decision. Peace in the air.”