ISLAMABAD: With the opposition parties parking the blame for mishandling the Faizabad protest at Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal’s door, his own party chief does not seem to be satisfied with his performance either.
The three-week long protest of Tehreek Labaik Ya Rasool Allah and other like-minded parties, which exploded into a national crisis due to the government’s mishandling, ended the previous day after the government caved in to their demands.
Apart from the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI), and the PML-N stalwart and former interior minister Chaudhry Nisar, who took a jibe at the incumbent interior minister for handling the crisis disastrously, Iqbal’s own party men question his competence.
Former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, who is also the party president, sat down with his close aides at the Punjab House on Tuesday to discuss the situation emerging in the wake of the Faizabad protest and the government’s “mishandling of the crisis.”
Sources within the PML-N circles confided to ARY News that Sharif expressed dissatisfaction over the performance of the interior minister, saying the protest was mishandled.
During the meeting, the PML-N chief was briefed on the Faizabad protest, the crackdown against it and subsequent negotiations with the protest leaders, and the resignation of law minister Zahid Hamid.
Sources said though the interior minister tried to convince the party supremo, the latter did not seem to be buying it.
The participants of the meeting were of the view that the resignation of the law minister had reflected badly on the government and the minister shouldn’t have resigned.
They observed that other parliamentary parties were also part of the legislation with regard to the Khatm Nabuwwat oath for electoral candidates, but they did politics over the issue, leaving the government to fend for itself.
The leaders who attended the meeting included Minister of State for Information Marriyum Aurangzeb, Maryam Nawaz, Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif, State Minister Daniyal Aziz, Senator Asif Kirmani, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister Musadik Malik.