PAT chief’s allies angered by his sudden decision to wind up sit-in without consulting them; suspect covert deal with govt
Relations between the Chaudhrys of Gujrat and Pakistan Awami Tehreek chief Dr Tahirul Qadri have strained after the former came to know about the latter’s ‘contacts’ with the government to reach an understanding over the winding up of his Islamabad sit-in, said a report in a local daily.
According to a report in Dawn, PML-Q leaders Chaudhry Shujaat Husain and Pervaiz Elahi were not happy with Qadri’s “contacts with a close aide of the Sharifs and reaching an understanding with the government”.
Although the PAT chief denied having made any contact with the government, the Chaudhrys were not satisfied.
“Relations between Qadri and the Chaudhrys are no more ideal as they were before the start of the ‘revolution’ march in August. Qadri has suddenly stopped giving importance to the Chaudhrys’ suggestions and this cannot happen without any reason,” a source told the newspaper, adding that the abrupt winding up of the sit-in gave credence to the “Qadri-government deal”.
“Qadri and the Chaudhrys will apparently remain political allies but they will follow their own political course,” the source said, adding that the PAT chief might not take on Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in accordance with the understanding, but would not spare Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif for his alleged role in the killing of his 14 workers in Lahore.
There has been a disappointment in the camps of Qadri’s allies, including Majlis-i-Wahdatul Muslimeen and Sunni Ittehad Council, over his decision.
“The sit-in has been called off without achieving its objectives and it may not reflect well on the protesting parties,” PML-Q’s Information Secretary Senator Kamil Ali Agha said, according to the report.
Agha admitted that relations between the PML-Q leadership and Dr Qadri were no more ‘ideal’. “The relations have strained after reports that he had struck a deal with the government. We expressed our reservations. Dr Sahib has taken the important decision without our consent,” Agha said.
He said the PML-Q would go along with Qadri but decided to hold rallies on its own in different parts of Punjab in coming days.
PPP leader Raja Riaz told the paper that he had already disclosed the “government-Qadri deal”.
“A large amount of cash is involved in the deal and some common local and foreign friends of Qadri and the Sharif family have played a role in the deal,” he claimed.
Qadri’s decision also disappointed the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf.
“PTI asked Qadri Sahib to continue the sit-in as long as he could. However, it is his decision to call it off,” PTI’s Punjab President Ijaz Chaudhry told the paper.
Sunni Ittehad Council’s spokesman Arshad Mustafai said its chairman Sahibzada Hamid Raza would announce on Wednesday (today) his party’s point of view on the PAT’s decision to shift its sit-in to other parts of the country.