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May 4, 2010

PML-Q to support PM’s brother in by-polls

May 4, 2010

ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q) has announced to support Syed Ahmad Mujtaba Gilani, brother of Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani, for the Punjab Assembly by-elections on PP-206, Lodhran, from where the PML-Q won the February 2008 polls.

PML-Q Punjab President Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi has declared that since the prime minister’s brother is contesting election from PP-206, therefore, the PML-Q has decided not to nominate any candidate from his party in this constituency despite the fact that the PPP opposed them in the recent Gujrat by-elections. The contest for the said seat has become important by the fact that the federal government candidate has been pitted against the candidate that enjoys the support of the provincial government and affluent people.

The announcement has come from Chairman Senate Standing Committee on Food and Agriculture and PML-Q Senator Syed Javed Ali Shah and National Assembly Standing Committee on Cabinet Chairman and PML-Q MNA Dewan Ashiq Hussain Bokhari who have assured the area people that Syed Ahmad Mujtaba Gilani would serve them in the best possible manner as his family has a splendid record of serving the area.

Commenting on Ms Naghma Mushtaq’s statement published in a section of the press on Monday that “PM’s brother fights PML-N backed widow”, they said it was an attempt to misguide the public opinion and obtain sympathy through sloganeering through conjectures and distortion of facts. The fact is that PP-206 belonged to the PML-Q. Ms Naghma Mushtaq won the seat on the PML-Q ticket in February 2008 elections but afterwards, joined the Forward Bloc that supported the ruling party of the province. However, realising that she holds a fake graduation degree, consequently, she had to resign. Therefore, her statement that she resigned in protest against the imposition of governor rule in the Punjab is misleading.

The two legislators said at the moment, after the abolition of

graduation condition, she intended to contest the by-election on the PML-N ticket from PP-206, Jalalpur Pirwala. Syed Javed and Dewan Ashiq further stated that they themselves and many prominent local leaders had approached Mujtaba Gilani to contest election from this seat.

Moreover, when Mujtaba Gilani desired to contest from PP-178, Muzaffargarh, the PPP opted for giving the ticket to another candidate. However, now all the local PPP leaders of PP-206 have been able to convince the party leadership at the highest echelon that there is a consensus among the local leadership of PP-206 on Mujtaba Gilani’ candidature. Therefore, the party has decided to award him ticket from PP-206.

Political sources said the claim that PP-206 was not the base of Gilanis had no foundation. Traditionally, the Gilanis have been serving the area people from the seat in question since the partition. Makhdoom Muhammad Raza Gilani, grandfather of Mujtaba Gilani, defeated the Unionist Party candidate from this seat when the contest was between the supporters of Pakistan Movement and the defectors of it. Subsequently, Syed Hamid Raza Gilani, the uncle of Syed Ahmad Mujtaba Gilani, had twice won the National Assembly elections from this seat. Furthermore, this area is also part of the Lodhran district from where Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani himself won his National Assembly seat. This seat, in fact, by no standard provides base for Ms Naghma Mushtaq as her family had been politicking in an adjoining constituency, PP-205, and not in PP-206.

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