LAHORE - A visible crack emerged in Muttahida Majlise Amal (MMA) following JUI-S decision to quit the six-party religious alliance in less than two weeks of its revival.

A senior leader of Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Sami seeking anonymity told The Nation that his party had decided not to be the part of alliance.

The MMA is an alliance of six religious parties: Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl, Jamaat-e-Islami, Jamiat Ulema-e-Pakistan- Noorani, JUI-S, Markazi Jamiat Ahlehadith and Islami Tehreek.

Formed in 2002, the MMA contested general election held same year under Parvez Musharraf and formed government in KP and Balochistan. However, the alliance was dissolved in 2007 due to differences among its leaders on the issue of contesting general elections of 2008. The JI and JUI-S had boycotted the election while Maulana Fazlur Rehman’s JUI-F opted to go into it.

The revival of MMA was announced on November 9 at Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) head office Mansoora. Leaders of all the parties who were earlier part of the alliance had attended the meeting. JUI-F chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman and JI chief Senator Sirajul Haq had announced the revival of the alliance after the meeting. The other leaders who attended the Mansoora meeting were JUP- Noorani president Pir Ijaz Hashmi, MJA head Professor Sajid Mir, JUI-S Secretary General Maulana Abdur Rauf Farooqi and Islami Tehreek Secretary General Allama Arif Wahidi.

The parties which are part of the MMA represent all religious schools of thought: Brailvi, Deobandi, Ahlehadith and Shia. (JUP- Noorani represents Brailvi school of thought, JUI-F and JUI-S both claim backing of Deobandi school, MJA is Ahlehadith party while Islami Tehreek represents Shia.)

Efforts were on for the revival of MMA for more than six months especially at the end of JUI-S and Maulana Fazl. The religious leaders believe unity among all schools will favour them in grabbing large number of votes of ideological segment in next election. Although Maulana Samiul Haq who proudly calls himself the father of Taliban has been expressing concerns about the MMA before and after its revival, he gave some hints to part ways from it after Monday’s meeting with PTI chairman Imran Khan in Islamabad.

The JUI-S leader said: “We will officially announce our decision to quit alliance after JUI-S Shoora (core committee) meeting,” he added. JUI-S senior leaders are meeting in Jamia Haqqania Akora Khattak on Friday on call of party chief Maulana Samiul Haq.

“We had passed our concerns to all leaders in Mansoora meeting but they were not addressed. So we decided to quit,” he gave reason of the decision.

He further informed that JUI-S decided to make seat adjustment with PTI in next general elections in KP and Fata. In Punjab, he added, JUI-S will support the Milli Muslim League, a Jamaat-ud-Dawa backed political party.

“It is most likely that JUI-S, Milli Muslim League and other parties (excluding JI) part of Difa-e-Pakistan Council form another alliance at Punjab level,” he said.