Senior politician and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader Makhdoom Javed Hashmi said on Thursday that even though he had respect for Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N) chief Mian Nawaz Sharif, he detested the way his former party had been used as the chief’s personal property.
Addressing a gathering in Multan, he welcomed former deputy mayor Multan Nadeem Qureshi into PTI ranks while unleashing scathing attacks on his former party’s leaders. The former PML-N stalwart asserted that the party was not subservient to an individual family, adding that even though Nawaz had visited London at least 40 times in the past three years, he failed to visit Multan more than a couple of times, and continued to ignore his requests.
“I rebelled against the PML-N leadership for the rights of my workers and followers in Multan. My rebellion is justified because it is to fight for the identity and privileges of my people,” he said, adding that even though he was promoted high within the ranks of the party, ultimately by ignoring his requests, the party led to the degradation of his respect in his constituency.
Commending PTI for changing the political sphere, Hashmi said the status quo had been hit by PTI’s tsunami and was worried about its growing popularity with the masses, adding that attempts to win back supporters by other parties would be in vain.
The by-election announced by the Election Commission of Pakistan for five vacant seats of the National Assembly (NA) includes four NA seats vacated by new PTI members, including Shah Mahmood Qureshi, Makhdoom Javed Hashmi, Jahangir Khan Tareen and Sardar Assef Ahmed Ali. The seats are expected to be fiercely contested as the region has become a political hotbed for various parties. Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif is likely to arrive in Multan soon, followed by Nawaz who is due to address a rally early in February.
Published in The Express Tribune, January 17th, 2012.
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