CHAKWAL, March 30: The rift between the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) and the Pakistan Muslim League (PML-Q) over the seat adjustment formula is deepening as the PML-Q’s district president Chaudhry Mohammad Ali is also set to contest elections from PP-20 where the PPP has fielded its district president Shahjahan Sarfaraz Raja.
Another blow which left the PPP’s local leaders bewildered came from the electoral alliance between former district nazim Sardar Ghulam Abbas and the top leadership of the PML-Q.
According to the alliance, Mr Abbas would support the PML-Q candidates Chaudhry Pervez Elahi in NA-61 and Sardar Amjad Iliyas in PP-23. In return, Mr Abbas has been assured to get support from PML-Q in PP-22, NA-60, PP-20 and PP-21.
The NA-61 and PP-22 seats are the home constituencies of Mr Abbas while he also enjoys a large vote bank in NA-60 and its two provincial constituencies.
He has brought out an independent panel to contest the elections.
Mr Abbas himself is set to contest elections from NA-60 and PP-22 while he has fielded Malik Akhtar Shahbaz in PP-21.
The decision for PP-20 would be taken soon.
“An electoral alliance between me and the top leadership has been reached,” Mr Abbas confirmed to Dawn on Saturday evening.
The fast changing political scenario has worried the PPP.
In NA-60, the PPP has nominated Raja Sanaul Haq to contest the elections while it has yet to decide its candidate for PP-21.
The PML Q’s stalwart Chaudhry Pervez Elahi has got the ticket to contest from NA-61 while the party has chosen Sardar Amjad Iliyas for PP-23.
The PML-Q is still silent on PP-22 where it would support Sardar Ghulam Abbas rather than filing its own candidate.
PPP’s local leaders are of the view that a seat adjustment formula with the PML-Q was made according to which NA-60 and its two provincial constituencies - PP-20 and PP-21 – were given to PPP while the PML-Q was given a free hand in NA-61 and PP-22 and PP-23.
However, the leaders of the PPP were shocked when the PML-Q’s district president Chaudhry Mohammad Ali submitted nomination papers for PP-20 for which PPP’s district president Shahjahan Sarfaraz Raj is also a candidate.
“We have conveyed our concerns to our leadership which is negotiating with the PML-Q leadership,” PPP leader Raja Sanaul Haq told Dawn.
He said if Shahjahan Sarfaraz Raja was stopped from contesting elections he would also withdraw his candidature.
“I would not contest elections if Shahjahan is stopped by party’s top leadership,” he warned.
“We can’t tolerate that PML-Q supports our archrival Sardar Ghulam Abbas against us,” he maintained.
He said he and Raja Shahjahan worked hard in NA-60 and launched a number of development projects.
“The dual carriageway of Mandra-Chakwal Road and Chakwal-Sohawa Road along with many other uplift projects were launched by PPP and we would sweep the polls in NA-60, PP-20 and PP-21,” he claimed.
“We would decide about the ticket for PP-21 soon,” said Shahjahan Sarfaraz Raja.
PML-Q district president Chaudry Mohammad Ali while talking to Dawn claimed that according to the seat adjustment formula the whole district of Chakwal was given to the PML-Q.