PM approves nomination of Khalid Khursheed for GB CM slot | Pakistan Today

PM approves nomination of Khalid Khursheed for GB CM slot

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday finalised Advocate Khalid Khursheed’s name for the position of Gilgit-Baltistan (GB) chief minister.
Khurshid was elected the member of Gilgit-Baltistan assembly from GBLA-13 constituency in GB in the November 15 elections.
After a feud between candidates of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) GB for three days, the prime minister approved the name of Khursheed from Astore, Diamer region. His selection was made as per the tradition of electing chief ministers from different regions of GB, as previous chief ministers were selected from Baltistan region and Gilgit region.
“Although GB Governor Raja Jalal Hussain and Federal Minister of Kashmir Affairs and Gilgit-Baltistan Ali Amin Gandapur was in favour of nominating Fathullah Khan, the general secretary of PTI GB, but the premier, on the advice of some influential people, selected Khursheed for the top slot,” said an insider.
According to reliable sources, a potential group within PTI, especially from Baltistan region, had warned that in case of nominating Fathullah, who belongs to the GBLA-2, Gilgit-II from where the former CM Hafeezur Rehman was elected, a forward bloc will emerge within the party. The party, fearing division within the party members in GB Assembly had rescheduled the election for CM in the assembly. The election for chief minister was originally scheduled for November 27, but it was postponed to November 30.
Interestingly there was rumour before the election that Khursheed would become the next chief minister of GB.
According to local leaders of the party, PM Imran is likely to visit Gilgit on November 30 and participate in the oath-taking ceremony of the chief minister. He is also likely to make some announcements related to development in GB.
Khursheed, a barrister, hails from Rattu of Astore district in GB. He was born on November 17, 1980. He completed his matriculation from a public school and college in Gilgit and moved to Faisalabad for further education. After his graduation, went to London to study law.
After returning from London, he contested his first election in 2009 as independent candidate, but he lost the election. He once again contested the election as an independent candidate in 2015 but could not win the seat from GBLA-13.
In 2020, he, as candidate of PTI won the seat against Pakistan People’s Party’s (PPP) Abdul Hameed, Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz’s (PML-N) Rana Farman Ali and Dr Ghulam Abbas (Independent) in GBLA-13 Astore-I. He contested in the past two elections as an independent candidate but could not win the seat.
Khursheed had joined PTI in 2018 and became president of PTI Diamer division in GB. His father was a judge. One of his brothers is a retired DIG. He reportedly has an influential family in the constituency.
Although he is qualified to be a barrister, he has never practiced law. His family lives in Gilgit but he is used to visiting his constituency to keep his political contacts in Astore.
Other candidates for the CM slot included Fateh Ullah Khan and Colonel (r) Abaid Ullah Baig. Fateh Ullah, who is also general secretary of PTI GB was also considered a potential candidate for the important position. Though he, as per unofficial results, won the seat in GBLA-2 Gilgit-II, against PML-N candidate Hafiz Hafeezur Rehman and PPP candidate Jamil Ahmed, but PPP candidate is challenging the results of this constituency.
Abaid Ullah from Hunza was also being considered another expected candidate for chief minister GB. The PTI candidate has won the seat from GBLA -6 Hunza against PTI rebel independent candidates Noor Muhammad and Kamil Jan.
Earlier on Friday PTI’s Chief Organiser Saifullah Saifullah Niazi had made the announcement regarding the new chief minister through a tweet.
On November 26, Polling was held for the post of speaker and deputy speaker of GB Assembly, in which Amjad Ali Zaidi of PTI and Ghulam Muhammad of opposition contested for speaker. The PTI candidate won the election with a total of 18 votes.