Nawaz gives Nisar the cold shoulder | Pakistan Today

Nawaz gives Nisar the cold shoulder

  • Former interior minister to speak up in a couple of days

LAHORE: Former prime minister and leader of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) Nawaz Sharif is reportedly angry with his long-term associate and former interior minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan.

According to details, Nawaz decided not to extend a Central Working Committee (CWC) session invitation to Nisar on Tuesday,

The decision came after Nisar openly opposed Nawaz’s stance on the party’s political strategy following the Supreme Court’s July 28 verdict that ousted the former from holding public office.

According to reports, Nawaz was not ready to invite Nisar despite the insistence of Shehbaz Sharif, Khawaja Saad Rafique, and Ayaz Sadiq.

Insiders said that several members of the CWC were opposed to the presence of Chaudhry Nisar at the meeting, despite his membership of the committee. The reason given for his absence was that he had been criticising various policies of former premier Nawaz Sharif inside the party meetings as well as in the open. The senior leader was opposed to confrontation with the judiciary and the executive.

There was also an exchange of critical comments between Chaudhry Nisar and some PML-N leaders, including Senator Pervaiz Rasheed.  Pervaiz Rasheed was, however, later stopped by the party leadership from making any remarks against the senior party leaders who remained with Nawaz Sharif through thick and thin.

Meanwhile, Nisar’s spokesman issued a statement, which neither endorsed nor denied these reports.

“Former interior minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan will issue a statement in the next one or two days over the alleged statement of Mian Nawaz Sharif and on the current situation,” he said.

On the other hand, Maryam Nawaz, in a social media post, denied the reports attributed to Sharif and said the statement was ‘absolutely false’.

It is worth mentioning that Chaudhry Nisar had maintained a very close relationship with Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif, who was elected as the acting president of the party.

According to political analysts, it is uncertain whether PML-N leadership would award Chaudhry Nisar the party ticket for National Assembly (NA) in the next elections due to his tense relationship with the former premier.

Earlier on February 14, differences between Nawaz Sharif and Nisar came to the front when in an apparent reference to Nisar, Nawaz Sharif quipped “where was the politician [Nisar] who had recommended him to return Lahore via motorway, instead of leading a rally via GT Road”; however, Nisar clarified, saying it was the party leadership’s decision.

Nawaz was presiding over an informal meeting of the PML-N leaders in Islamabad after his appearance before the accountability court in references pertaining to corruption unearthed in the Panama Papers case.

During the meeting, the ousted premier asked the participants where was the lawmaker who had recommended him to opt for motorway instead of Grand Trunk (GT) Road long march. To which, another party leader replied that he was angry with the party leadership so he has isolated himself.

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