Cracks appear in ruling PTI after Khattak’s outburst

Islamabad   –  Cracks in ruling PTI came on the surface after outburst by senior PTI leader and Federal Minister for Defence Pervez Khattak against Federal Energy Minister Hammad Azhar in the parliamentary party meeting.

Khattak had termed policy about supply of natural gas to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) discriminatory. Inside sources told The Nation that during the PTI parliamentary meeting the PTI KP President and senior lawmakers had exchanged hot words with Hammad Azhar after which Khattak walked out of the party meeting.

However, on instructions of the PM, he was called back to the meeting. Upon making his entry into the meeting, Prevez Khattak addressed Prime Minister Imran Khan and said, “There is ban on supply of gas to KP and if this situation continues, we may not be able to give vote to you”.

Prime Minister Imran Khan, after listening to harsh comments, reacted to Khattak and commented that if “you have no confidence in me, handover government to someone else”.

“KP is producing gas and it’s being ignored and crushed”, Khattak had remarked.

MQM, which is also an ally of the PTI, strongly reacted to the mini-budget and asked the PM to withdraw tax on essential food items.

The Prime Minister replied that there was no additional tax being imposed which might create problems for common man.

Later, Pervez Khattak separately met Prime Minister Imran Khan in presence of Federal Minister Asad Umar and SAPM Amir Dogar. The PM directed the minister to immediately remove reservations of Pervez Khattak and give him a report.

Talking informally to media, Pervez Khattak admitted that he raised the issue of gas in the meeting however he said he had full confidence in the PM. “I do not have differences with Prime Minister Imran Khan”, Khattak denied when asked if he had any differences with the PM.

To another question, he said PTI was strong and he would not allow making of a forward bloc within PTI.

Prime Minister Imran Khan spent most of his time at his chamber at the Parliament House and met MNAs of the ruling party which include Ghous Baksh, Nasrullah Dareshik, Ramesh Kumar, Abdul Basit Bokhari, Dr Amir Liaqat, Iqbal Afridi and Muhammad Afzal.

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