PTI woos its dissident lawmakers
The ruling PTI on Friday tried to placate its dissident Punjab lawmakers, who are unhappy with the party over the treatment being meted out to former general secretary Jahangir Tareen.
For this purpose, the party assigned the task to Punjab Governor Chaudhry Sarwar, who met with the disgruntled MNAs and MPAs in Lahore.
The governor assured MNA Raja Riaz and other parliamentarians that all their concerns regarding Tareen would be addressed and “political victimisation was out of the question”.
“Justice would be ensured in the cases against Jahangir Tareen,” Sarwar said.
“He [Tareen] is an asset of the party,” he added.
PTI MNA Riaz, accompanied by provincial ministers Ajmal Cheema, Mian Khalid Mehmood and Khayal Mehmood Kastro, called on Sarwar at the Governor’s House.
They discussed political and administrative issues besides matters concerning Tareen.
Sarwar said every member of the PTI had full confidence in the leadership of Prime Minister Imran Khan.
“It’s under the leadership of PM Imran that the party is united,” he added.
The governor said for the first time the federal and Punjab governments were working for the equal development of all regions.
“The government is taking practical steps for the development and stability of the country.”
Sarwar said provision of relief to the poor segments of the society was the top priority of the government.
“Every party activist is the strength of the PTI and the party is on the same page with its allied political parties under the leadership of [PM] Imran Khan.”
He added that the PTI government would complete its constitutional term. The general elections wwould be held in 2023 and there was no threat to the government.
“The Naya Pakistan Housing Scheme and Ehsaas Programme are public-friendly initiatives of the government”, he maintained.
“The Punjab Aab-e-Pak Authority will fulfill its promise to provide clean drinking water to the masses and development projects of the Faisalabad division will be completed soon.”
Reposing complete confidence in the leadership of PM Imran, Riaz expressed his gratitude to the governor for his assurances to address their concerns over the treatment being meted out to Tareen.
Provincial minister Ajmal Cheema said Imran Khan was their prime minister and party leader.
“We are sure that he will listen to our reservations and address them,” he added.
The PTI leaders assured the governor that they were committed to strengthening the government and playing their role in the development and prosperity of the country as per vision of the premier.
A day earlier, Tareen said some ‘people’ from Islamabad had assured him of a meeting with the prime minister “in a few days”.
Tareen’s remarks came as he spoke to the media during his appearance at a court in Lahore in connection with the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) cases against him.
The estranged PTI leader said he had a “strong connection with Imran Khan and I do not want it weakened”.
“Imran Khan and I struggled together [politically],” he added.
“I had invited my allies for an Iftar party. Prior to that, some people from Islamabad reached out to me and assured me that my group will be able to meet the premier in a few days.”
The PTI leader further said that no shareholder [in his company] is a party against him in the case, saying they were all happy with him.
“The cases against me are not criminal cases, this isn’t a case of the FIA, but of the SECP and FBR. We will get justice from the court,” he maintained.
Nearly a week ago, PTI lawmakers, who are backing the dissident leader, warned the government that they would be compelled to take extreme measures if the injustice being meted out to the former party general secretary did not stop.
Speaking to reporters after they accompanied Tareen to a banking court in Lahore, a group of around 30 MNAs and MPAs of the ruling party warned PM Imran that if matters were not taken care of soon, it might be too late.
(With input from APP)