ISLAMABAD - Leaders from PPP’s coalition partners including ANP, MQM and PML-Q met President Asif Ali Zardari on Friday to discuss current political situation, especially the upcoming bye-polls, Senate elections and general elections.

Parliamentary Sources informed The Nation that issue of creating new provinces figured high during the meeting between President Zardari and Parliamentary heads of PPP allied parties. The prime objective of the meeting was making a ceasefire between the ANP and MQM  which were at loggerheads over the issue of new provinces  so that their energies could be focused on the elections.

The charm of PPP co-chairman once again worked as the two parties agreed to push for Seraiki province while deferring the issue of Hazara province, which is being strongly opposed by the ANP that leads the coalition government in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

The sources said that other issues, which came under discussion during the meeting, included inter-alliance problems, forthcoming bye-elections and the Senate election.

They said that detailed discussion was also held on the possibility of holding general elections later this year after alliance presents the budget for 2012-13. The parliamentary heads after discussion left the matter to main coalition partner PPP to decide about timeframe and other modalities relating to general elections.

Those who called on the president at the Aiwan-e-Sadr included ANP chief Asfand Yar Wali Khan, MQM leaders Farooq Sattar and Babar Khan Ghauri, and PML-Q leader Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain. Khursheed Shah, Babar Awan, Raja Pervez Ashraf, Mir Asrarullah Khan Zehri, Noorul Haq Qadri, Haji Muhammad Adeel, Munir Khan Orakzai, Mehreen Anwer Raja and Farhatullah Babar were also present on the occasion.

In related development, the ruling PPP has invited applications from party workers for Senate elections due within weeks.

Announcing this, Party Secretary General Jahangir Bader today reminded the party workers that the last date for applying in writing to the Party co-chairman for the award of party tickets was Tuesday January 10. Applications accompanied with a bank draft for Rs 30,000 should reach the Party’s Central Secretariat in Islamabad by the due date, he said.

The senate elections are due to be held in weeks from now, as half of the total strength of Senators will retire on March 12. Under the law election to vacant seats can be held even several weeks before the retiring date of March 12 of half of the senate members.