Lal Haveli intervention not acceptable: PTI workers convention


Workers angry over withdrawal of party ticket from Ch Adnan

ZUBAir Qureshi

The workers of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), Rawalpindi in a Workers Convention on Monday staged protest demonstration against the withdrawal of the ticket from the former Member of the Provincial Assembly (MPA) Punjab and a diehard worker of the PTI in Rawalpindi Chaudhry Adnan.

He was earlier nominated as the party’s candidate for the provincial assembly of Punjab in the upcoming elections but later in a surprising move, his nomination was withdrawn.

A three-member review committee of the PTI has recently taken the ticket back from Adnan and allotted it to another former MPA Arif Abbasi. In Rawalpindi three tickets have been withdrawn over the appeals/requests of the standby candidates. The other two persons whose tickets have been cancelled/withdrawn are: Col (R) Shabir Awan and Taiba Ibrahim. Earlier they were nominated as the PTI candidates for the MPA from Rawalpindi but later they too were shown the door and the tickets are now allotted to Tariq Mehmod Murtaza, Col (R) Ajmal.

In the PTI workers’ convention, the workers of the party said the withdrawal of tickets was in fact the act of Lal Haveli where former Interior Minister and President of his own Awami Muslim League (AML) Sh Rashid Ahmed is sitting and controlling the allotment of tickets for the Punjab Assembly, they alleged. He wants his ‘men’ as MPAs from Rawalpindi, they said. Besides, the money factor too cannot be overruled. It has also played a major role in this change of heart, said a senior member of the PTI Rawalpindi.

Making a direct reference to Sh Rashid Ahmed as a manipulator and the backdoor conspirator, the PTI workers rejected the change of tickets for Rawalpindi by the party’s high command. People of the PP-10 Rawalpindi (Chakari, Chak Baili, Rawat Chontra), constituency PP-11 Rawalpindi (Chaklala Cantonment Board) and PP-12 Rawalpindi (Lakhan-l, Lakhan-II, Dhamyal, Dhama Rawalpindi and, Jarahi of Rawalpindi District) want ‘khilari’ (players) of the ‘kaptaan’ not the ‘bhikaari’ (beggar) of Lal Haveli, they said.

Recently, an audio leak between a candidate of the Punjab Assembly Abu Zar Chaddhar and son of former Chief Justice Saqib Nisar was aired on Pakistan’s main TV channels in which it was ‘revealed’ that the son of the ex-Chief Justice took a bribe of Rs12 million over the role of his father in convincing the PTI leadership to allot Abu Zar Chaddar. In Monday’s Workers Convention too, the audio leak was echoed and a large number of the angry and disgruntled workers of the PTI accused the MPAs tickets were withdrawn in the same pattern.

Chaudhry Adnan has been a popular and a beloved public figure who was always there to help the people of his constituency out. In the upcoming elections, we had wished and welcomed his nomination but ‘something’ happened overnight and the ticket was withdrawn from him, they said. If the party doesn’t review its decision, it would be difficult for us to cast a vote for the new candidate, they said.