Last week, when President Zardari spent a few days in Lahore boosting jiyala morale with Sultan Rahi type one-liners, many aimed against his PML(N) rivals, people did note a certain development in his entourage.
For instance, it was obvious that his political secretary Rukhsana Bangash was more than just a political advisor. In fact, she was doubling as a bodyguard as well. Well-built and never one to spare a shout and a shriek, she was seen physically managing his meetings telling senior provincial PPP leaders how close they could get to the president, who would sit where and who was to get the status symbol seating. But it was her physical activity that made a lasting impression.
She was seen flanking the president like a bodyguard, clearing his path like a bodyguard and even physically removing unwanted political enthusiasts from his path just like a bodyguard. At one point even Raja Riaz was made to realise where he stood in the equation. That is not as important as Rukhsana Bangash and certainly not next to President Zardari. Raja quietly obeyed instructions and left the coveted seat.
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We hear that someone really high up was very concerned that his son should not participate in the parliamentary discussion on Nato supply lines which was in progress. Insiders tell us that the young MNA from Multan had been told not to contribute this way or the other on the topic. Apparently, someone up there feared that it would earn the wrath of militant groups or it would annoy the US lobby.
It was a lose-lose situation which the young man was asked to avoid. However what the VVIP forgot to instruct the son some time ago was to also steer clear of pharmaceutical companies from Multan and that landed him in real trouble. That is in a holiday resort in Cape Town where there is a friendly ambassador to play host and no extradition treaty to hound him.
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