Punjab CM-hopeful Elahi reaches out to Tareen group, PML-N

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LAHORE: Punjab Assembly Speaker Chaudhry Parvez Elahi on Thursday accelerated his sweats in the turbulent political script to invite opposition lawgivers for not only his own election as the Punjab chief minister, but also to cover the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) government in the fiefdom.

Prime Minister Imran Khan has formerly sought the abdication of peremptory CM Usman Buzdar and transferred it to Punjab Governor Chaudhry Sarwar for its acceptance.

Meanwhile, cautious of Mr Elahi’s moves to invite its parochial lawgivers, the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) has directed them all to reach Lahore and report to the party’s administrative leader.

Following a meeting with colorful parochial ministers, including PTI’s Law Minister Basharat Raja and Prosecution Minister Chaudhry Zaheeruddin who are both pious to him, Elahi assigned them with meeting as numerous MPAs as possible across the political peak to achieve the magic number of 186 needed in the Punjab Assembly to get him tagged as the CM.

It’s learnt that Mr Raja held a meeting with some parochial ministers and prepared a strategy to speak to the displeased PTI rudiments and insure their support for Mr Elahi. The meeting agreed that the figures could be achieved, and there was a dire need to convert the‘ utmost united’ group of Jahangir Tareen – that comprises 17 MPAs.

“ The most important task isn’t to move the lower displeased rudiments within the PTI, but the Jahangir Tareen group, which is presently showing an inclination towards the opposition,” a minister told Dawn on the condition of obscurity.

Mr Elahi, the ruling PTI’s seeker for the chief minister’s niche, isn’t only trying to get the Tareen group by his side, but is also using his leverage to‘poach’PML-N MPAs. Mr Raja has been quoted as claiming that a number of the opposition party’s lawgivers were in touch with Mr Elahi – piecemeal from the many who were constantly meeting CM Buzdar and also issued show- cause notices by their party.

A minister said the meeting decided that all original issues of the lower displeased groups would be resolved, adding they had before also blackmailed the Buzdar government and got development finances for their separate constituencies besides a share from the sections’ package and transfer- bulletins of their blue-eyed officers.

A displeased PTI group, generally known as the “ Chheena group”, didn’t give a definite assurance to Mr Elahi in a meeting on Thursday, and said they will advertise their decision within 24 hours.

Mr Elahi, along with Tariq Bashir Cheema, Basharat Raja, Chaudhry Zaheeruddin and Hafiz Ammar Yasir, met the group at the hearthstone of its leader, Ghazanfar Abbas Chheena. The group includes Amir Inayat Shahani, Ali Raza Khan Khakwani, Ejaz Sultan Bandesha, Muhammad Ahsan Jahangir, Gulraiz Afzal Gondal, Khwaja Dawood Suleimani, Sardar Mohiuddin Khosa, retired Col Ghazanfar Abbas Shah, Taimur Ali Lali, Sardar Shahabuddin Sehar, Faisal Farooq Cheema, Ejaz Khan and Ghulam Ali Asghar Khan Lahry.

Meanwhile, displeased PML-N MPA Azhar Abbas Chandio’s son, Naeem Khan, called on Mr Elahi in his Punjab Assembly chamber, and told him Mr Chandio wanted to come to the assembly to meet the speaker, but was unfit to due to an illness. He conveyed his father’s communication that he’d bounce for Elahi for the forthcoming chief minister’s election.

Independently, other iconoclastic PML-N lawgivers, Niaz Khan and Faisal Niazi, also called on the speaker and assured him of their support.
PML-N to keep an eye on its MPAs

In the wake of Parvez Elahi trying to bait PML-N lawgivers, the party has directed all its MPAs to reach Lahore.

“ We’ve reports that Mr Elahi has communicated a number of our MPAs. Since he enjoys good relations with both the ruling and opposition lawgivers, he’s trying his stylish to decide the support of some of them to secure his palm,” a PML-N Punjab legislator told Dawn on Thursday.

So, to avert Mr Elahi’s move, he said, the party leadership has summoned all its MPAs to Lahore, asking them to report to their administrative leader. “ All the lawgivers will stay in Lahore under the close watch of the party,” he said.

In the 371- member Punjab Assembly, the PML-N has 165 lawgivers, the PTI 183, PML-Q 10, PPP seven, independents five and Rah-i-Haq Party one. Of the 165 PML-N MPAs, four of them have defected and formed a group under Jalil Sharaqpuri, and have formerly been expelled from the party.

Mr Elahi needs 186 votes to come the principalminister.However, he’ll need at least three independents, Rah-i-Haq’s one and over 15 PML-N deserters, If the Tareen group does n’t back him.
The PML-N, meanwhile, has yet to finalise a seeker to hole against Elahi. “ Our complete focus is on the ouster of Prime Minister Imran Khan. Once the no- confidence stir succeeds against him also the opposition leadership will sit together to decide an applicable seeker for the niche,” a PML-N leader told Dawn. “ The common opposition may advertise its seeker coming week.”

It has surfaced that the opposition is doubtful to address Opposition Leader in the Punjab Assembly Hamza Shehbaz of the PML-N for Punjab’s top office. “ As Hamza’s father Shehbaz Sharif is nominated for the high minister’s office by the common opposition, it doesn’t want to give two top posts to‘one party and one family’in thepost-Imran Khan script,” the PML-N leader said and added the Tareen and Aleem groups would be asked by the party to present their campaigners.

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