LAHORE – Apparently the PML-Q high command has succeeded in getting some special concessions from the PPP over seat adjustments in Punjab; however, these concessions will be put to test in the upcoming by-polls, which will help determine the durability of the political partnership between the two coalition partners for the next general elections.

The seat adjustment committees of PML-Q and PPP held their first formal meeting on Wednesday at the residence of Deputy Prime Minister and President PML-Q Punjab Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi.

Moonis Elahi, Chaudhry Zaheer-ud-Din, Raja Basaharat, Kamil Ali Agha assisted Pervaiz Elahi in the meeting, while the PPP side was led by Federal Minister Khursheed Shah and was aided by Imtiaz Safdar Warraich, Rana Farooq, Haider Zaman Qureshi and Aamer Dogar.

According to sources, a complete agreement could not be reached by the leaderships of PML-Q and PPP; however, the PML-Q has succeeded in grabbing some special concessions regarding its complete command on seven districts of Punjab while finalising an electoral candidate for the upcoming by-polls and next general elections.

The uneasiness of the PPP leadership due to authoritative posture of Pervaiz Elahi to press his demands has established the fact that both the alliance partners could damage each other if not in the by-polls then in the next general elections.

They informed, though Pervaiz Elahi seemed very receptive while listening to the PPP side of demands regarding announcing PML-Q candidates for Punjab without taking into confidence their electoral partner and their claim on the Forward Bloc seats but the look on the face of PML-Q leader clearly states that he would not listen to the PPP leadership when the mentioned issues would take up for a final shape before the next elections.

The sources divulged that one of the associates of Pervaiz Elahi replying to the PPP claim over the Forward Bloc said that most of the members of the Bloc were Muslim Leaguers and runner up in their constituencies were PML-N candidates in 2008 polls and according to the already set formula of seat adjustment between the two, the PPP’s claim was not justifiable.

At this point, a PPP leader said that if this was the case then the PML-Q could also not demand full authority for certain districts in the province, as PPP commands more say than the PML-Q in these districts.

They were of the view that upcoming by polls could be a test case of the political partnership between the two whether it would sail smoothly in the next elections or not.

The sources said that PML-Q chief, Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain joined the talks very late, which indicates that the meeting was inconclusive except some temporary special concessions for the PML-Q in Punjab.

Talking to the media on this occasion, PML-Q and PPP leaders maintained that they would not only put up consensus candidates in the upcoming by-polls and next elections but they would also launch joint election campaigns, however, the electoral symbol would be different.

In the media talk, Kamil Ali Agha representing the PML-Q and Imtiaz Safdar Warraich leading the PPP asserted that the candidates for the upcoming by-polls have been finalised, while the leaderships of the two electoral partners would announce their names very soon and the joint contenders would submit nomination forms on October 8th.

They claimed that after winning the upcoming by-polls, the PML-Q and PPP would jointly defeat the PML-N in the next general elections.

Replying to a query regarding, Ch Ahmed Mukhtar’s withdrawal in favour of Ch Shujaat Hussain, they claimed that it was not an issue.

Replying to another question about the dual nationality, they said that the matter was not part of the discussions.

PML-Q gets special concessions from PPP