LAHORE – Former federal minister Tasneem Nawaz Gardezi has joined the PML(N) during a meeting with the PML(N) chief Mian Nawaz Sharif at Raiwind on Thursday.

Tasneem Nawaz Gardezi, who had been politically affiliated with the Muslim League since 1985, has expressed complete confidence in the leadership of Nawaz Sharif. In the presence for former deputy speaker Ch Jaffar Iqbal, Nawaz Sharif welcomed Mr Gardezi in the party and expressed the hope that his inclusion would further improve the party position particularly in the Southern Punjab.

Bahawalpur based Tasneem Nawaz Gardezi served as federal minister twice during the both terms of Nawaz Sharif as prime minister. He held the portfolio of Federal Health Minister during 1990-93 and Federal Minister for Information during the second stint of Nawaz Sharif in 1998. Gardazi was elected as independent candidate in 2002 but he expressed his affiliation with PML(Q). Gardezis have a big clout in the Southern Punjab politics and joining of Tasneem Nawaz would certainly help the PML(N) to fill the vacuum created by the defection of Makhdoom Javed Hashmi in that part of the province. Not that but Gardezi’s participation will also help the party to present its point of view on the creation of another province in the Southern Punjab.

The PML(N) also favoured creation of another province in Southern Punjab, however, not on linguistic bases but from the point of better administration. The party also supported restoration of the state of Bahawalpur which in the past covered almost the whole part of the Southern Punjab which now contains about 20 out of total 36 districts of the Punjab.