ISLAMABAD: The Chaudhrys of Gujrat on Tuesday called on President Asif Ali Zardari at the President House, in what appears to be the last effort to resolve the dispute between the PML-Q and the PPP on the issue of seat adjustment for the general elections, sources in the two parties told Dawn.
The sources said PML-Q president Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain, former deputy prime minister Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi and his son Chaudhry Moonis Elahi had decided to meet President Zardari after failure of the joint committee of the two parties to resolve the dispute over the seat adjustment issue on a number of constituencies in Punjab.
PML-Q’s central information secretary Senator Kamil Ali Agha had declared on Monday that the Tuesday’s meeting in Islamabad between the two parties would be the final one on the matter. The meeting at the Presidency continued till late in the night and there was no official word from either side.
After the court’s restrictions on President Zardari taking part in political activities, the Presidency has stopped the practice of issuing official statements at the end of meetings.
The sources say the alliance between the two former coalition partners was in danger after both the parties fielded their candidates against each other in a number of constituencies.
The PML-Q is reportedly perturbed over the filing of the papers by the PPP candidates against PML-Q’s nominees in Sheikhupura, Kasur, Khanewal and Okara districts.
Similarly, the PPP is not happy over the PML-Q’s decision to field Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi against former minister Chaudhry Ahmed Mukhtar on the National Assembly seat (NA-105) for Gujrat.
PML-Q president Chaudhry Shujaat has already declared that the decision to award ticket to Mr Elahi is final and irreversible whether the PPP agrees to it or not. The PML-Q chief has claimed that there has been an understanding with the PPP that “Gujrat is exempted from the seat adjustment formula.”
This claim of the PML-Q chief was, however, rejected by PPP Punjab President Manzoor Ahmed Wattoo, saying the seat adjustment formula would be applicable all over the province and there was no exemption to any city or constituency.
Relations between the two former ruling coalition partners turned sour after the PPP allegedly tried to lure PML-Q’s potential candidates.