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July 28,2017

PTI in KP: A house divided against itself

Gulzar Muhammad Khan

PESHAWAR: Revolt against Chief Minister KP Pervaiz Khattak has once again surfaced. Leading a group of MPAs, KP education minister, who is also central deputy secretary general of PTI, Atif Khan and Senior Minister Shahram Khan Tarakai have come into the ring against the CM.

The group has met the party chairman Imran Khan and apprised him of their reservations. A Jirga headed by Speaker Asad Qaiser and comprising ministers and party workers has failed to sink the differences within the party. The Atif-Shahram group has taken the plea that most of the provincial affairs are not moving in the right direction. They said the CM is paving the way for other candidates against them in Swabi and Mardan. They added that in fact he has authoritatively started selecting candidates of his liking for every constituency.

According to sources, a sort of rebellion in the party has re-emerged in the wake of sharp differences with the CM led by Atif-Shahram group that has become very active against the chief minister claiming the support of a number of MPAs and MNAs.

This group had met Imran Khan a couple of days back at Nathiagali and candidly expressed their reservations against the CM.

It is learnt that deep differences exist between the revolting group and the CM over distribution of tickets for the forthcoming general elections. Other candidates of PTI are reportedly been considered to compete against Atif Khan in Mardan and against Shahram in Swabi.

It is said that Pervaiz Khattak has made up his mind to act arbitrarily and ignore even the central deputy secretary general of the party who has lodged a complaint with the chief of PTI. In a meeting two days ago with Imran Khan, Atif told him in categorical terms that being an important office bearer he cannot tolerate the CM patronising his cronies while distributing tickets.

On the other hand, Muhammad Ali Tarakai, an MPA of Awami Jamhoori Ittehad that was recently merged with PTI, has alleged that the chief minister was ignoring the party agenda and implementing his personal agenda. He expressed dismay over utilisation of funds and recruitment of employees. He further said that it is not party but his person that has precedence over everything.

Talking to The News, Shahram Tarakai said that they have a standpoint because of which they have differences with the CM. he said until and unless their reservations are addressed, they will remain steadfast. Atif Khan said that it was their democratic right to have political differences.

In the meanwhile, Speaker Asad Qaiser has become active to bring about a rapprochement. He is supported by some MPAs.


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