PTI leader Jahangir Tareen on Wednesday broke silence over speculation that he is meeting former president Asif Ali Zardari and may join the PPP.
Tareen rejected the reports, saying he was not leaving PTI. Tareen was talking to the media after he appeared at the banking court to attend his bail hearing. “Not one, not two but three FIRs have been registered against me,” he stated.
“Since the past year, after the sugar inquiry commission, these incidents have been happening against me. I have remained quiet for one year. What more evidence do you need of my loyalty?”, he said.
He said his loyalty was being tested and questioned why he was being singled out among sugar mills owners across the country.
“The unfairness is increasing,” he remarked, adding that his and his son Ali Tareen’s bank accounts had been frozen without any progress in the case involved. “Why was this done? Who is benefitting from this, who is behind this?”
The dissatisfied leader said he was asking for “insaaf from the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaaf”. Tareen further said “I was an ally. Why are you forcing me to become an enemy?” he questioned. He also urged the party to keep him as a friend.
He requested Prime Minister Imran Khan to disclose those who are seeking revenge against him. “Only the prime minister and the loyal supporters of the party can do that.”
Tareen seeking a ‘shift in the party’
Tareen’s announcement comes a day after PPP’s Syeda Shehla Raza alleged that a meeting between Zardari and the dissatisfied PTI leader had been scheduled for the upcoming week.
“There is a possibility that Tareen may join the PPP along with his supporters. If this happens then both [Prime Minister Imran Khan] Niazi and [Punjab Chief Minister Usman] Buzdar will be sent packing,” she had said in a tweet that was later deleted.
Raza had declared Tareen had already met PPP’s Makhdoom Ahmed Mahmood, and “it is believed he will meet Zardari” in Karachi. However, speaking to Dawn, Makhdoom rejected these claims.
After practically coming out of the opposition alliance — Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) — the PPP gets ready to envision its opportunities to form its government at the Centre in the future.
Tareen, son Ali Tareen booked in fraud, money laundering case
Earlier this week, The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) has registered a case against Jahangir Khan Tareen, an estranged leader of the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), and his son Ali Tareen over alleged involvement in financial misappropriation.
The case was registered by the FIA Lahore on March 22 under sections 406, 420, and 109 of the Pakistan Penal Code with Section 3/4 of Anti-Money Laundering Act, 2010, accusing both father-son duos of fraud involving Rs3.14 billion, local media reported.
According to the FIR, Jahangir Tareen illegally transferred shares worth billions of rupees to Farooqi Pulp Mills Limited (FPML) owned by his son and other relatives.
Saying the fraudulent investment was made for personal gains, the FIR said that the same firm was used for money laundering of around Rs3 billion.
The FIR also explains when and how FPML was made back in 1991.
The business tycoon however has rejected the allegations as baseless, adding that the accounts of his companies had also been validated by the private audit firm.
He maintained that the shares were transferred to the FPML in the accordance with the law.
Jahangir Tareen landed in hot waters when Prime Minister Imran Khan last year ordered the FIA to probe the sugar crisis and determine the elements involved in it.