With government formation still in the works, Pakistan Peoples Party co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari has ruled out any truck with the pro-Musharraf PML(Q) and but appeared unenthusiastic about impeaching the President, an issue strongly pursued by former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.
"I think the mandate is for democracy and against fundamental forces and the previous government," Zardari said in an interview to India Today magazine.
Asked if the mandate was not against Musharraf, he replied: "Isn't he part of it (the previous government)?" Replying to a question on the demand for impeachment of Musharraf, he said the new parliament, which will be "supreme", will decide whether President Pervez Musharraf should step down. He was confident that he would be able to reach a common ground with Sharif on the issue.
With the PPP having emerged as the largest party in Monday's general election, Zardari has vowed to strengthen parliament by forming a national consensus government. He has also stopped short of endorsing PML-N chief Nawaz Sharif's call for Musharraf to quit following the defeat of the ruling PML-Q in the polls.
On Musharraf's impeachment, he said "Let parliament decide. We are getting carried away by slogans rather than going to the crux of the job. The beef is in strengthening democracy."
To a query on whether he would ask Musharraf to step down, Zardari said, "Why don't we let parliament decide and see if it can do it. If it can't, then let everyone cut his cloth according to his size."