Tareen rules out minus-1 possibilities

Staff Report
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) senior leader Jahangir Khan Tareen on Sunday ruled out the notion that Prime Minister Imran Khan can be eliminated from the party through a “minus-one formula”, saying that time has arrived to minus Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) Vice President Maryam Nawaz from politics.
Responding to opposition’s efforts of bringing an “in-house change”, he said that the premier and his party were inseparable, while on the other hand, the PML-N vice president is on the risk of becoming politically redundant.
“PTI exists due to PM Imran and the present government is focusing on stabilising the national economy which had been destroyed by the previous rulers of PML-N and Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) during the last 10 years,” he said.
“The opposition leaders are being punished due to their corrupt practices during their time in power,” he said, adding that those facing court cases are trying to flee the country and “it appears that Zardari would also leave the country on medical grounds”.
He said that former prime minister Nawaz Sharif’s sons are in London to take care of their ailing father, hinting that the government might not allow Maryam to travel abroad.
Commenting on the appointment of Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) members, the PTI leader said that only the parliament has the right to legislate because of its status as the supreme institution. “It is our [government] and opposition’s shared responsibility to sit together [and resolve the issue],” he said.
On reservations shown by the PTI’s coalition partners, he said that Chaudhry brothers – Pervez Elahi and Shujaat Hussain – did not express any grievance during a recently held meeting with him.
“We have also resolved matters with Balochistan National Party (BNP) chief Sardar Akhtar Mengal in the past,” he added.
Responding to a question about former military dictator General (r) Pervez Musharraf, he said that the matter will be taken into consideration at the time of pronouncement of a verdict from the court.
It is worth mentioning here that Tareen’s statement comes a day after the PML-N stressed the need for an in-house change of the government before holding fresh elections as the party’s bigwigs met in London.
A group of PML-N leaders, who landed in London a couple of days ago, held a consultative session presided over by party President Shehbaz Sharif to weigh their options over the legislation for extending the army chief’s tenure and discuss the political situation in the country.