KARACHI: Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P) Convener Dr Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui on Friday the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government may survive the current political turmoil in the country by Prime Minister Imran Khan’s survival seems unlikely.
In conversation with a private television channel, the MQM-P convener said that in light of the no-trust motion, the ruling party’s government faces a significant threat and if it does not navigate the political minefield successfully, it will not survive.
Siddiqui’s statement comes two days after the top MQM-P leadership met with an opposition delegation at its Bahadurabad office. Opposition leaders and Dr Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui discussed the overall political situation in the country. Opposition leaders in the meeting included former PM Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, Rana Sanaullah, Khawaja Asif, Ayaz Sadiq, Saad Rafique, Ahsan Iqbal, Maryam Aurangzeb, Abdul Ghafoor Haideri and others.
“If the advisers are correct, a decision can be made to save democracy and Pakistan. The PTI government may survive, but the prime minister is unlikely to”, he added.
When asked whether his party was still supporting the government, Siddiqui said, “if they had been allowed to swim on their own, they would have learned”.
However, he maintained that the PTI has not developed the capacity to deal with issues politically.
With the no-confidence motion date approaching, the opposition, as well as the PTI-led government, are bent on securing the required headcount in parliament.
The MQM-P has seven seats in the National Assembly, and is one of the major government-allied parties.
Imran faces revolt
Around two dozen disgruntled MNAs of the ruling PTI came out in the open on Thursday, turning the ongoing power game turned ugly for Prime Minister Imran Khan even before the voting on the no-confidence motion.
Taking refuge at the Sindh House in the federal capital, several of them gave interviews to different anchorpersons, saying they had parted ways with the ruling party and would not contest the next elections on a PTI ticket.
One of them rubbed even more salt on the wounds when he claimed that three federal ministers had already quit the PTI.
In a startling revelation, PTI’s Ramesh Kumar claimed that 33 members of the assembly, including three federal ministers, had left the ruling party and the prime minister should immediately resign now.
The allegations about coercion and bribery surfaced after PM Imran had claimed during a public address that opposition leaders were sitting in the Sindh House with “heaps of money” to purchase loyalties of treasury lawmakers.
The premier had asked the election commission to take action against this “horse-trading”.
The country plunged into political crisis just a day after PM’s statement when the disgruntled members came out in the open and denied the allegations, saying they were staying at Sindh House over safety concerns and had not received a single penny.
The interviews of the dissenting members and footage running on TV channels showing them present at Sindh House came at a time when the opposition parties, including the ruling party in Sindh, have been attempting to oust the PTI government through a no-trust motion.
Before the situation unfolded, PPP leaders said the government was planning to attack Sindh House on the grounds that the opposition had detained some ruling party lawmakers there ahead of the vote on the no-confidence motion against the prime minister.
Prior to that, PML-Q leader, Speaker Punjab Assembly Parvez Elahi, said in an interview that around 10 to 12 government lawmakers were in “safe custody” of the opposition.
The PML-Q leader said these lawmakers had approached him but were now nowhere to be seen now.