Qureshi to quit PTI once he finds alternative: Asif

By News Desk
June 03, 2023

ISLAMABAD: Defence Minister Khawaja Asif has claimed that incarcerated Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Vice-Chairman Shah Mahmood Qureshi will leave the Imran Khan-led party as soon as he finds an alternative. Asif’s comments come days after sources had said that PTI’s key deserters met Qureshi in Adiala jail and tried to convince him to part ways with the former prime minister — who was voted out in April last year. However, Zain Qureshi — son of Qureshi — dismissed the perception that his father would part ways with Khan or the former ruling party.


“Shah Mahmood had told me he wanted to join the PMLN when he left the PPP,” said the defence minister while speaking during the Geo News programme “Aaj Shahzeb Khanzada Kay Saath” on Friday. Asif, who is also a PML-N senior leader, said that the former foreign minister had also met PMLN supremo Nawaz Sharif in this regard. Speaking about the May 9 riots that erupted after the deposed premier’s arrest, the federal minister said that the establishment was challenged in May. “It was a mutiny in May, do they not know what is the punishment of rebellion against the army?” he said.

“The establishment, politicians and the people are on the same page regarding the May 9 events,” he said, adding that the state was attacked in that month. Berating the ousted premier, Asif accused Khan of shattering the country’s economy, adding that he is now trying to weaken the country defensively.

Referring to the May 9 riots, the defence minister said: “They have attacked the country.” “More people will leave it,” predicted the federal minister. Asif asked Khan to give more names to the negotiation team so that if some of them quit the party, then there should be a replacement for the members.