Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan

Published April 25, 2013

Born in 1954 in Rawalpindi district’s Chakri village, ChaudhryNisar Ali Khan is an alumnus of Lahore’s prestigious Aitchison College. Considered a Pakistan Muslim League - Nawaz (PML-N) heavyweight, he recently served as opposition leader in the National Assembly as well as chairman of the Public Accounts Committee.

Although he currently has no party post, Nisar is known for his assertiveness in the party’s affairs and has had differences with other PML-N leaders. Electoral history

Nisar has been elected an MNA seven times (in 1985, 1988, 1990, 1993, 1997, 2002 and 2008) –from NA-52 (Rawalpindi-III) in 2002 and from NA-53 (Rawalpindi – IV) in 2008.

He has served as federal minister for petroleum and natural resources in PML-N chief Nawaz Sharif’s governments and was placed under house arrest after the 1999 coup staged by former military ruler Pervez Musharraf.

After the 2008 election, Nisar was made federal minister for food, agriculture and livestock. However, his tenure was short-lived due to PML-N’s decision to part ways with the ruling PPP. Later in September 2008, he was made leader of the opposition in the Parliament’s lower house when Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi resigned from the post.

Political misconduct and conspiracies

Nisar was criticised over the formation of an all PML-N opposition team in the eight-member parliamentary committee mandated to select a caretaker prime minister. He was also held responsible for the failure of the committee in evolving a consensus over a caretaker prime minister.

During the 2008-2013 NA, Nisar also indulged in brawls with other parties, including MQM, JUI-F, PML-Q, PTI and main rival Pakistan Peoples Party.

Despite portraying himself as anti-American and an opponent of US foreign policy after 9/11, a contradictory version of his views surfaced in a diplomatic cable leaked by WikiLeaks in 2011.

The cable sent to Washington on September 19, 2008 said: “As always, Nisar insisted that he and the PML-N were pro-American (saying that his wife and children in fact are Americans).”

— Research and text by Imran Kazmi

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