LAHORE – PML-Q high command, expressing its utter dislike for Manzoor Wattoo on Friday, has refused to receive PPP’s new commander for central Punjab for meeting of the liaison committees of two coalition partners to discuss Wattoo’s actions regarding allegedly stealing the PML-Q candidates and review the seat adjustment formula.
The meeting was then rescheduled at Governor House but instead of PML-Q high command, Moonis Elahi, Raja Basharat and Kamil Ali Agha held talks with PPP leadership. From the PPP side Manzoor Wattoo, Tanvir Ashraf Kaira, Nazar Muhammad Gondal and Federal Information Minister Qamar Zaman Kaira participated in the meeting.
PML-Q sources close to the top leadership told this reporter that the main agenda item of the meeting was to press upon the PPP leadership to gag Manzoor Wattoo who was running a secret drive to steal the mandate of the PML-Q, launching joint candidates in constituencies where both alliance partners lack potential contenders and reviewing the already agreed seat adjustment formula.
They informed that Moonis Elahi along with his party’s two trusted lieutenants has briefed the PPP leadership over the Wattoo’s covert drive to make new turncoats in the PML-Q with supporting “evidence”. While PPP’s new president of central Punjab denied the charges levelled against him by their only coalition partner in Punjab claiming that the “evidence” was concocted by those elements who are trying to sink the PPP-PML-Q boat.
Party sources further informed that Moonis insisting on the line of his father demanded of the PPP leadership for giving absolute control to the PML-Q for ‘Mission Punjab’. He demanded that PPP leaders in all parts of Punjab should follow the Chaudharys’ game plan and made it clear that the PML-Q would not compromise on this demand at any cost.
They maintained that federal information minister took some notice of PML-Q fears regarding Wattoo and promised to take up the issue with party’s top leadership, besides assuring the junior Chaudhary that Wattoo would work in close liaison with the PML-Q. However, Moonis didn’t seem to be satisfied with the assurance of senior Kaira and again insisted at sidelining Wattoo.
Sources quoting senior leadership as saying that Chaudharys refusal to receive Wattoo or take part in the meeting of liaison committees were yet another strong signal to PPP high command regarding Wattoo and complete control deciding the fate of Punjab for the two coalition partners.
Informing about the seat adjustment formula in constituencies where both parties lack potential candidates, they told that both sides agreed to ponder upon the formula to give opportunity to the partner that commands good sway in any constituency.
After the meeting, Raja Basharat and Manzoor Wattoo claimed before the media outside the Governor House that there were no differences between the two parties and both the coalition partners would not only field joint candidates in the upcoming bye-polls but also in the general elections. The PML-Q and PPP leaders also maintained that neither alliance partner would launch nor support an independent candidate of theirs in any of the elections.
PPP-Q talks off to a touchy start