White Lies

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We hear that Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain is repeatedly asked that if cousin and brother-in-law Parvez Elahi is a candidate for PM, should a stopgap arrangement be needed in the near future. Political pundits also predict that any replacement of you-know-who would have to be from Punjab, given that the President and the NA Speaker are from Sindh and a Sindhi troika at election time could be disastrous for the ruling party. Not surprisingly, Parvez Elahi’s name keeps cropping up in this context. However, Chaudhry Shujaat, when recently asked this popular question, was honest enough to reply, “I don’t think PPP will part with this post in the year leading up to a general election.” He was also modest enough to add “However, if it did happen, we could fix everything in the country instantly.” That is political wisdom and we may add, a whole lot of confidence for you.

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At the recent expo of Indian goods in Lahore, the Indian delegation was in for a major surprise. Besides the efficiency of local police that caught a diamond thief in a sting operation within hours, the visitors found that someone in the Governor House was also singing their song.

Apparently, Governor Khosa threw a reception for the Indian trade delegation and the major attraction on the venue was, move over Katrina Kaif and Vidya Balan, an item number by guess who? The guv, just hours earlier asked his ADC to get the full words on a Lata number. The ADC did manage the urgent task and our nightingale sang the number with zest. Now this diplomacy and trade rolled into a song.

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Last week Islamabad witnessed a mega wedding where the Supreme Court CJ’s son tied the knot with the daughter of a marriage hall proprietor. The five-star hotel was packed with no less than 1500 people, some claim it was more like 2000 guests. However, more conspicuous were the guests that were absent. We hear that the father of the groom had some tough decisions to make. President Zardari could not be invited because of the ongoing NRO case, the PM could not be on the guest list because of a Contempt of Court hearing against him currently being processed by the SC and there was no way that Mian Nawaz Sharif could be invited in the backdrop of the Asghar Khan petition where the Sharif name also crops up. In fact, the major political figures were nowhere to be seen, mainly because there are ongoing criminal or civil legal proceedings against them. The two exceptions were Rana Sanaullah complete with moustaches but we hear that he is family and you just cannot ignore your first cousin on your son’s wedding. Nor can you blacklist a black coat that has been your supporter and driver during the lawyers’ movement which explains Aitezaz Ahsan’s presence at the scene of the valima. Completely understandable, of course.

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