ISLAMABAD - Eating a humble pie, the Jamiat Ulema Islam-Fazl has reportedly decided to ‘unconditionally’ walk in the power corridor, following a meeting of its chief Fazlur Rehman with Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Saturday.

During the government formation process that started immediately after the May 11 elections, the religio-political was too demanding and therefore it received a cold shoulder from the majority Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz.

But at the same time it was so eager to join the ruling club that Fazl made a beeline for Jati Umera to ask Nawaz for backing his efforts to manage a coalition government of their own in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, only to be told that PML-N will respect the Pakistan Tehrik-i-Insaf (PTI) mandate in the restive province.

Later, the party of ‘Maulana’, who is notorious for his expertise in forging even most unbecoming kind of alliances and coalitions, wanted to secure lucrative positions in federal and Balochistan cabinets. But, ignoring the too high demands of the JUI-F, the Nawaz league went ahead with forming its governments without it.

Now, the JUI-F has decided to join the coalition government ‘unconditionally’, though it has received some ‘solid assurances’, PML-N sources said. The unopposed election of Dr Abdul Malik Baloch as Balochistan chief minister was a reflection of the settlement between the two parties, a source in the government said.

PML-N sources said that their new partner would be appropriately accommodated both in parliamentary committees as well as in the federal cabinet. The JUI-F is also expected to be given the chairmanships of Kashmir Committee and Islamic Ideology Council (IIC). Both the slots carry federal minister’s status, he said.

Sources in the government said that it was also agreed between the two parties that PML-N would extend support to the JUI-F candidates in the by-polls on the seats vacated by Fazlur Rehman in KPK, while Fazlur Rehman has also been assured that the Senate seat from Balochistan to be vacated by Mohammad Khan Sheerani, who has sworn in as Member National Assembly, would be given to them. The y said that Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif would dole out one ministerial slot to JUI-F when he expands his cabinet, which was likely to be done soon.

A press release issued by PM Media Office said that Nawaz and Fazl discussed the overall political situation of the country in their meeting. The prime minister reiterated that the enormity of the challenges faced by the country demanded unity among the people and cooperation among the political parties. Nawaz said that he would be open to any counsel beneficial to the greater good of the people.