LAHORE - MBASHIR HASSAN - As the time for political parties to take a definite position on their electoral cooperation with other parties is drawing nearer, Jamaat-e-Islami is engaged in secret talks with PML-N over seat adjustments for the upcoming elections.

It has been learnt reliably that JI has sent a list of its prospective candidates to the PML-N along with their constituencies where it wants to make adjustments with that party. The PML-N has confirmed having received the list, but JI wants to keep the whole affair secret till the final outcome.

“The Jamaat is trying to keep the whole affair secret, perhaps, to keep the prospects of its cooperation with other parties alive in case its negotiations with the PM-N fail to materialise,” commented a source in PML-N.

The JI is also engaged in talks with PTI over the seat adjustments. JI chief Syed Munawar Hassan recently visited the Lahore residence of Imran Khan to discuss the prospects of contesting the coming elections jointly by making adjustments on certain seats, especially in Lahore.

There are also reports that a strong group within JI is opposed to any electoral cooperation with PTI and is pressurising its leadership to ally with PML-N.

A source in PTI confirmed that negotiations with JI over seat adjustments were not heading in the right direction. He said a section of opinion in PTI was also opposed to any such arrangement with JI.

When contacted, PML-N spokesperson, Senator Pervaiz Rashid confirmed that his party had received a list of candidates and constituencies from JI. He said negotiations with JI over seat adjustments would start within a few days.

JI spokesperson, Anwar Niazi, however, expressed his complete ignorance about such a development. “It is not in my knowledge whether or not such a list has been sent to PML-N,” he said.