PML-N threatens to dissolve Punjab Assembly

Published: October 9, 2011

" The PML-N talks about democracy but wants to escape the Senate elections. This is nothing but a stunt being aired through lotas (turncoats)," Senator Babar Awan (PPP). PHOTO: TMN/FILE

LAHORE: In the game of political brinkmanship being played against the current administration, the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz has decided to pull out its trump card: threatening to dissolve the Punjab Assembly.

On Sunday, a proposal to dissolve the provincial legislature was issued by Tahir Ali Javed, a member of the Punjab Assembly from Narowal, and the leader of the ‘unification bloc’ of the Pakistan Muslim League Quaid, the 47-member group of dissidents within the 81-member PML-Q caucus that is loyal to the rival PML-N.

Javed admitted to The Express Tribune that his bloc had decided to forward the request to Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif after it became evident that the PML-N’s efforts to dissolve the National Assembly had failed.

The move sparked a fiery reaction from the ruling Pakistan Peoples Party. Senator Babar Awan of the PPP accused the PML-N of trying to sabotage the PPP’s expected victory in the Senate elections, due to be held in March 2012.

“The PML-N talks about democracy but wants to escape the Senate elections,” said Awan at a press conference in Faisalabad on Sunday. “This is nothing but a stunt being aired through lotas (turncoats).”

Sources close to the party told The Express Tribune that the PML-N had tried a few days ago to convince the PML-Q’s 50 members of the National Assembly to switch sides, but were thwarted in their effort by President Asif Ali Zardari, who moved quickly to allay the party’s fears by contacting PML-Q chief Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain.

(Read: Political masterstroke – After assuaging PML-Q, PPP wins back MQM)

The sources confirmed that the move to dissolve the Punjab Assembly was part of the PML-N’s strategy to avoid the Senate elections, in which the PPP is expected to win anywhere between 46 and 53 seats, effectively becoming the majority party in the upper house of parliament until the next Senate elections in 2015.

The swiftness with which President Zardari was able to beat back the challenge from the PML-N has put the party on the back foot, forcing them to exercise their ‘last resort’ option far earlier than they had initially wanted and making the PML-N more cautious about its political strategy.

(Read: Man with a plan – Strategies, schedules and another term for the president)

Initial reaction within the Punjab Assembly is mixed at best, with only Pakistan Muslim League Zia coming out in support.

(With additional reporting by Shamsul Islam in Faisalabad)

Published in The Express Tribune, October 10th, 2011.

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Reader Comments (17)

  • Ali
    Oct 9, 2011 - 4:02PM

    Express Tribune really need to be careful when attributing Dr. to someone. This Tahir Javed ali has surrendered his medical diploma because of his misconduct in the US.

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  • Dr. Sheikh
    Oct 9, 2011 - 4:56PM

    Oh please please stop this drama in my country you corrupt and inept people… All hungry for power…
    People have Rejected PML-N, PPP and PML-Q No matter how hard you try to deceive us you disgusting people,
    *WE WILL VOTE FOR PTI AND IMRAN KHAN, WE NEED TO GET OUT OF THIS STATUS QUO POLITICS *

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  • Ch Allah Daad
    Oct 9, 2011 - 5:50PM

    This is another stupid advice to Mian Sahib from a fake doctor. My request to turn it down has nothing to do with politics. Next wave of Dengue fever starting in feb and march could be very very dangerous. We need an experienced, brave field commander and nobody is more qualified than Mian Sahib. If Punjab Assembly is dissolved, federal government will bring interim government headed by Q league and all these Lotas will join them including this advisor. Punjab especially Lahore will be left at the mercy of dengue mosquitoes. The dreams of PTI, conquering Lahore will turn into nightmare. Terrorist threats to anti Khan voters and Dengue fear to Terrorists will leave open field for Zardari and Co.

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  • Qasim
    Oct 9, 2011 - 6:26PM

    Dear Dr. Sheikh,
    I agree with your comments and would like to add following
    1- If Punjab assembly dissolved. In that case at least PPP will not dominate in senate.
    2- Do you feel that with PTI will give another chance to PPP again because of the fact all the votes between of same community will distribute between PML-N & PTI and advantage will go to third partly PPP.

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  • Saleem Khan
    Oct 9, 2011 - 6:29PM

    @Dr. Sheikh:
    PTI (Imran Khan Solo Member) has no agenda or plan to take country out of problems… Imran Khan is just doing his politics on anti US feelings but never criticized illegal stay of Osama in Pakistan… Hypocrites can not take country out of problems…Right now, its darkness every where…Not a single leader in country.

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  • Imran
    Oct 9, 2011 - 6:52PM

    A stupid idea! First, it contradicts all the recent claims by PML-N that their recent tirades against the government are not due to Senate elections. Media will grill them alive. Second, the government can easily recall by-elections, while going for the Senate elections in the remaining seats for the other provinces. Once by-elections are done, Senate seats for Punjab will be taken care of. But all this will greatly damage any chances of PML-N in the next general elections. Their claims of being the most popular party will be thoroughly tested in the Punjab based by-elections. If they lose ground to PTI, they are doomed for ever. PTI will ride on the wave in the upcoming general elections.

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  • kala_bacha
    Oct 9, 2011 - 6:52PM

    It can only be happen in Pakistan – only thugs, dacoit, gang leader and runaway incompetent doctor or engineer or corrupts lawyers can be minister and ordinary person paying ransom as their salaries!

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  • Niaz Hussain Shah
    Oct 9, 2011 - 6:54PM

    Dr. Tahir Javed’s idea of dissolving the Punjab Assembly to stop PPP winning Senate elections will be a flop because no matter what, PPP is set to win the Senate elections by majority. He has brought this idea forward on the behest of Mian Nawaz Shareef and Shehbaz Shareef. PMLN is running away from reality that it stands no chance to beat PPP in the Senate. Even after the dissolution of Punjab Assembly the Senate elections will be held on time because rest of the provincial assemblies will still be functioning. Punjab Assembly, if dissolved, will elect their part of the senators after being re-elected.
    PMLN is power hungry.

    Weak leadership of Nawaz Shareef has caused the party to lose their support among the masses. This was Nawaz Shareef who was calling Asif Zardari his elder brother and was praising his qualities as a leader after successful ouster of Gen. Mussaraf from presidency.

    Mian sahiban face the reality and be ready to face the music. You have no chances of winning the coming elections in 2012/13. But there is no prohibition on dreaming.

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  • Imran
    Oct 9, 2011 - 7:01PM

    In politics you have to consider all possible outcomes of a decision. So far, PML-N “leaders” have displayed lack of foresightedness, leading to their political isolation, and their branding with the banned organizations. Lets see how PML-N dances to the tune of this idea, and how the later events unfold.

    One thing is for sure, that there can’t/won’t be general elections before Senate elections. There are ample grounds for it, and very easy to justify in the court if needed.

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  • No BS
    Oct 9, 2011 - 7:27PM

    Sharif brothers will never dissolve punjab assembly, their deal with Zardari was 5 years for PPP and then 5 years for sharif brothers………………. unfortunately for them Kaptaan and his team of merry men have killed all their dreams of playing musical chairs

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  • Ghaznavi
    Oct 9, 2011 - 8:20PM

    @ Qasim

    The 38 million new voters are neither PMLN nor PPP voters, they are yet to establish their voting pattern, so its wrong to attribute them to any camp. These are the youth of country who will devise the future of Pakistan. Considering this your theory has no legs to stand on. The are energetic and motivated and want change, which can not come through the current set up, thats for sure.

    @ Saleem
    What agenda do you believe PPP and PMLN have?
    We have seen their agenda which is only to be in power at all cost. Its time for us to give chance to a new honest leadership who have their stakes in Pakistan, and they pay due taxes. This is the only way to steer our country out of this crisis.

    Recommend

  • Butt
    Oct 9, 2011 - 8:48PM

    No one else but Musharraf.

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  • Nadeem Ahmed
    Oct 9, 2011 - 9:03PM

    If Punjab Assembly is dissolved, PPP and Q League will take over. Chaudries of Gujrat with their great administrative skills and Zardari’s unmatched political superiority will control Punjab. Imran as usual will boycott the elections and start another campaign to eradicate corruption. Who needs Imran, when Zardari is not in power.

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  • shuja
    Oct 10, 2011 - 12:25PM

    Musharraf best of the lot. he is more in demand in international arena due to his intellectual and communication skills.Recommend

  • Imran Swati
    Oct 10, 2011 - 4:38PM

    If a CM of a provence does this it means that it is legal and it is also the beauty of democracy .
    Hope for the best !

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  • Usman
    Oct 10, 2011 - 8:25PM

    Sharifs are relying solely on Geo and judges.

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  • Oct 13, 2011 - 12:19PM

    Ali Dr. Tahir Javed is Real doctor from King Edward Medical College, so stop supporting who create these scandals against him.Recommend

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