PESHAWAR/ ISLAMABAD/ LAHORE/ KARACHI:
On the occasion of its 46th founding day on Friday, Pakistan Peoples Party’s co-chairman President Asif Ali Zardari said the party believed in politics of reconciliation and was not looking for revenge.
The president said PPP had made history and “would continue to follow in the footsteps of Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and Shaheed Benazir Bhutto”.
“BB is with me in the form of Bilawal Bhutto Zardari. The day will come when I will relinquish all my responsibility to him,” Zardari told a gathering at the Chief Minister House in Karachi.
He stressed on the need to organise the party and warned that some elements were trying to create differences among coalition partners PPP and MQM.
“No one can imagine what the PPP and MQM have achieved through their reconciliation policy, which has been initiated to shun differences and initiate a new era of relations.”
Minister for Information and Broadcasting Qamar Zaman Kaira used the celebrations as a platform to take certain covert, but calculated jibes.
Addressing a function in the federal capital, the minister said that despite the judicial murder of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, witch-hunting of Benazir Bhutto and President Zardari through fake cases, the PPP respects the judiciary.
“We request the respectable judges to remain in their domain and let the parliament decide the issues of political nature,” said Kaira.
Separately, PPP chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari said: “On this day let us also reiterate our commitment to tread the footsteps of our leaders Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and Shaheed Benazir Bhutto to build a modern, progressive and democratic Pakistan in which everyone, particularly the poor, the dispossessed, the marginalised and the minorities, all live with honour and dignity.”
Founding day celebrations at the governor house in Peshawar were, however, marred by a fight which broke out amongst party workers angry over the names of new office bearers.
The brawl erupted following PPP leader Ayaz Shah’s announcement of MPA Malik Tehmash Khan as the president and Ghazanfar Ali as the general secretary of PPP’s district cabinet in Peshawar.
Infuriated by Shah’s appointment, the incumbent president Israrullah Nahaqi along with his supporters started protesting and chanting slogans against the party’s provincial leadership.
This resulted in a physical tussle between Nahaqi’s and Tehmash’s supporters as they pushed and shoved each other. Some also resorted to baton charge, which left two activists of the Nahaqi group injured.
In Punjab, senior leaders paid rich tributes and lauded the ruling party’s struggle for democracy.
(WITH ADDITIONAL INPUT FROM APP)
Published in The Express Tribune, December 1st, 2012.