LAHORE - Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q) president and veteran politician Cha¬udhry Shujat Hussain Wednesday reiterated his support for his cousin Chaudhry Parvez Elahi in the upcoming election for the Punjab chief minister.

Interestingly, Ch Shujat is aligned with the ruling coalition in the Centre, and his son, Chaudhry Salik Hussain, is a member of Shehbaz Sharif's cabinet. In a policy statement issued by the PML-Q, Shujat said Elahi was the party's candidate for the top office, adding that "those who won the mandate have the right to govern".

The PML-Q president pointed out that he had made similar statements multiple times in the past as well.

In response to the reports that PPP co-chairperson Asif Ali Zardari had asked Shujat to write a letter instructing PML-Q MPAs not to vote for Elahi, Shujat said there was "no question" of issuing a letter.

"I do not need to clarify. The solution to the country's problems lies in not getting involved in cycles of counting [votes]," he said while referring to the election for the chief minister.  "Whoever succeeds in solving the problems of the poor will have completed his numbers in the true sense," Shujat said in his statement. "Those who are elected should serve the people."

Shujat said the solution to the country's problems was to either let the incumbent government stay for a year or more till the general elections or hold fresh elections immediately. The election for the Punjab chief minister will be held on July 22.

Qureshi says his son not a contender for CM or PA Speaker

PTI has required number of MPAs to elect new CM: Qureshi

Meanwhile, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Vice-Chairman Shah Mahmood Qureshi and PML-Q's Chaudhry Parvez Elahi discussed the upcoming re-election during a meeting on Wednesday. Former Punjab governor Omer Sarfraz Cheema, Mehmoodur Rasheed and recently elected MPAs also participated in the meeting, according to a statement issued afterwards.

Elahi noted that the joint opposition had the majority in the Punjab Assembly and vowed to defeat every effort to kidnap or harass MPAs.

For his part, Qureshi said the majority in the provincial assembly was standing with PTI Chairman Imran Khan and his nominated candidate.

Meanwhile, talking to reporters in Lahore, Qureshi clarified that his son Zain Qureshi was not a contender for Punjab Assembly Speaker or chief minister, adding the party had already named Elahi as candidate for the position of the provincial chief executive. He also insisted that the PTI had the required strength of MPAs to elect new chief minister. The PML-Q has 10 MPAs in the Punjab Assembly, and Zardari reportedly asked Shujat to side with the ruling coalition.