Rifts in PML-N as Qadir, Zehri decide to quit

Published November 1, 2020
Retired Lt Gen Abdul Qadir Baloch, who heads the Balochistan chapter of the PML-N (R) and Sardar Sanaullah Zehri (L) have decided to quit the party along with other colleagues. — APP/File
Retired Lt Gen Abdul Qadir Baloch, who heads the Balochistan chapter of the PML-N (R) and Sardar Sanaullah Zehri (L) have decided to quit the party along with other colleagues. — APP/File

QUETTA: Retired Lt Gen Abdul Qadir Baloch, who heads the Balochistan chapter of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), has developed serious differences with the central leadership of the party for not inviting former chief minister Sardar Sanaullah Zehri to the recently held Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) rally in Quetta and over the remarks of former speaker of the National Assembly Ayaz Sadiq.

Sources in the PML-N confirmed here on Saturday that Gen Qadir and Mr Zehri had decided to quit the party along with other colleagues. “Gen Qadir and other party leaders will announce their resignation from the party soon,” the sources added.

They said Gen Qadir, who had served as Balochistan governor and Corps Commander, Quetta, expressed anger over not inviting Mr Zehri to the PDM’s Quetta pubic meeting at the behest of Balochistan National Party-Mengal President Sardar Akhtar Mengal.

Sardar Mengal has confirmed that he had asked the PML-N leadership not to invite Mr Zehri to the PDM’s public meeting due to a tribal feud with him, as cases were registered against him and his brother in the murder case of Nawab Amanullah Zarakzai.

The sources disclosed that Gen Qadir had asked PML-N Vice President Maryam Nawaz during her recent visit to Quetta to invite Mr Zehri to the PDM’s public meeting. However, she referred the matter to party’s vice president and former prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, who then took up the matter with the PML-N supreme leader, Nawaz Sharif, and apprised him about the reservations of the BNP-M president.

Differences over invitation to PDM’s Quetta meeting

They quoted Mr Abbasi as saying that Mr Zehri could not be invited to the PDM public meeting, because he had not been in Pakistan for the past two and a half years.

The sources further claimed that Mr Zehri had resigned from the post of chief minister against the advice the party’s supreme leader, Mr Sharif, when a no-confidence motion had been moved against him in the Balochistan Assembly. “Mian Sahab had asked him not to resign from his office,” the PML-N sources explained.

PML-N secretary general Ahsan Iqbal also confirmed to Dawn that Mr Zehri had not been invited to the PDM public meeting because of the tribal feud with Mr Mengal.

“We did not invite Sardar Sanaullah Zehri to the PDM meeting due to tribal feud,” he said. He said that it was up to Gen Qadir if he still wanted to quit the party.

Published in Dawn, November 1st, 2020

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