PPP leaders decry PML-N’s ‘cold shoulder’

Air grievances to Zardari about Punjab govt’s ‘non-cooperative attitude’

RAMEEZ KHAN July 11, 2024
President Asif Ali Zardari paid tribute to the martyrs and reiterated the resolve to respond to terrorist activities with full force. SCREENGRAB


Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) leaders have voiced grievances about the lack of cooperation from their ally, the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) led government in Punjab, to President Asif Ali Zardari.

The complaints were aired during a dinner hosted to honour PPP candidates who managed to secure a sizable vote bank in the last general elections.

According to party leaders, the meeting-cum-dinner was organised at Bilawal House and presided over by President Zardari.

The senior leadership in attendance included Governor Punjab Sardar Saleem Haider, PPP Central Punjab president Raja Pervaiz Ashraf, Nayyar Bukhari, Nadeem Afzal Chan, General Secretary Central Punjab Hasan Murtaza, Samina Khalid Ghurki, Qamar Zaman Kaira, PPP Lahore division president Chaudhry Aslam Gill, and Shehzad Cheema.

The main guests of honour were around four dozen PPP candidates who had garnered a decent vote share despite their electoral losses.   Veteran leader Manzoor Wattoo was also present.

It was revealed that several party leaders complained to President Zardari about the Punjab government’s cold behaviour towards them, feeling their genuine grievances had fallen on deaf ears. They also raised concerns about the brewing agricultural crisis in Punjab, particularly the mishandling of the wheat crop, which has pushed many farmers to the brink of bankruptcy.

PPP leader Rana Farooq Haider, who attended the meeting, said that President Zardari lent a sympathetic ear to the complaints but apprised the attendees of the crisis-like situation that necessitated all-out support for the PML-N-led government.

On the issue of taxes, he conveyed that while they would welcome these taxes, he doubted they would achieve anything significant.

Nadeem Afzal Chan stated that the majority of attendees complained about the non-cooperative attitude in Punjab. He added that Chief Minister Maryam Nawaz was afraid of the PPP, which explains her reluctance to cede political space to her allies.

Chan reassured the leaders that PPP has always fought for its rights and will continue to do so.

As a member of the committee formed to end the deadlock between PPP and PML-N over this issue, he mentioned that they would bring up the matter with PML-N soon and that their top leadership would also weigh in on the situation.


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