ISLAMABAD -  Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi engaged Leader of Opposition in the National Assembly Syed Khurshid Shah on appointment of new chairman National Accountability Bureau and shared lists of candidates with each other.

It was the third meeting between the two in this connection and after the meeting, Leader of Opposition Syed Khurshid Shah informed the media that three names each from the Prime Minister and his side were put on the table and formal discussion on the qualifications of each candidate came under discussion.

He informed that from the government side the names of incumbent Director General Intelligence Bureau Aftab Sultan, Justice (Retd) Rehmat Jaferi and Justice (Retd) Ch Ejaz were given while from the Opposition Leader’s side the names of Justice (Retd) Faqir Mohammad Khokhar, Justice (Retd) Javid Iqbal and former secretary Election Commission of Pakistan Ishtiaq Ahmad were put on the table.

Sources in the ruling PML-N informed that the government wanted to get sitting DG IB Aftab Sultan as new chairman NAB because of his closeness with Sharif family.

The fellow landed in controversy when he had flown out to London for meeting Nawaz Sharif a few days back and opposition parties came up with scathing criticism on his act of meeting with the disqualified premier.

It was the third interaction between the Leader of House and Leader of Opposition for evolving consensus on some common person to be appointed as chairman NAB for next four years.

Under the NAB Ordinance meaningful consultation between the Leader of Opposition and the Prime Minister is mandatory for the appointment of new chairman and the law was silent in case both the of them fail to evolve consensus on anyone of the list of three.

Sources said that in case both Syed Khurshid Shah and Shahid Khaqan Abbasi could not evolve consensus on anyone of the above six names they could add new names in the list for evolving consensus on it.

Interestingly there is no mention of way forward in case Leader of Opposition and Leader of House fail to evolve consensus on any single name and now it would be imperative for both Syed Khurshid Shah and Shahid Khaqan Abbasi to evolve consensus on any single person.

The incumbent Chairman NAB, Qamar Zaman Chaudhry, would be retiring on October 9 and it would be required on part of Prime Minister and Leader of Opposition to come up with a consensus name who would step into the shoes of Qamar.

On the other hand, both Prime Minister and Leader of Opposition in the National Assembly were under tremendous pressure from other opposition parties in this connection and the new appointee would have to be a man of impeccable character. In case of appointment of any person having leaning with either side would invite huge criticism from other opposition parties which had already doubted the intentions of both government and Pakistan People’s Party the main opposition party in the Parliament.

Doubting the integrity of Leader of Opposition Syed Khurshid Shah, Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf in cooperation with Muttahida Qaumi Movement(MQM) another major opposition party in the Parliament were working on a plan to de-seat incumbent Leader of Opposition so that they could block the way of PML-N, PPP collusion in bringing a handpicked Chairman NAB and the next interim set up as both of them are mandated under the constitution for these crucial appointments.