Saturday, October 21, 2017

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The impact of Bolshevik Revolution on South Asian politics

The 1917 Russian revolution had a great impact on South Asian political movements and leaders. DW talks to renowned Pakistani social activist and author Harris Khalique about its relevance today.
DW: What impact did the Russian Revolution have on anti-colonial movements in British India?
Harris Khalique: I find it interesting that while Karl Marx looked at British colonialism in India during the 19th century with a different lens and saw it as an agent for bringing modernity to a decadent and feudal country, the Marxist-Leninist Bolshevik Revolution of 1917 was looked at most favorably in British, French and other colonies.
In British India, the 1917 revolution not only inspired and influenced secular movements, it had a similar impact on faith-based movements and political organizations. Even before the Communist Party of India (CPI) could formally take roots, there were religious scholars like Maulana Hasrat Mohani and Maulana Obaidullah Sindhi publicly owing allegiance to the international socialist movement.
They emphasized the inherent nature of deep connections between nationalism, freedom and class struggle. Over the next few decades - between 1925 and 1947 - from CPI to Progressive Writers Association to Indian Peoples Theater Association to the trade union federations, a solid left-wing anti-colonial movement was galvanized.
Why did the communist parties fare well in post-partition India and not in Pakistan?
One obvious reason is the near-absence of any modern industry in Pakistan at the time of the country's creation and the other reason is the Pakistani government's decision not to dismantle the traditional feudal structure for agricultural production, unlike what the Indian government did soon after independence.
Besides, the Communist Party and its organs were proscribed by the Pakistani state very soon after independence. This was followed by the imposition of martial law, which was supported by the US. Not only that Pakistan mostly remained aligned with the US and the West during the Cold War, it was hardly a democracy where all political voices are allowed a space. Communists were seen as pro-Soviet and persecuted.
In later years, as Pakistan drew closer to communist China, some pro-Chinese parties and peasant movements were allowed to operate. Consequently, these initiatives led to the rise of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto's Pakistan People's Party around 1970.
The Pashtun areas in Afghanistan and Pakistan had a strong communist movement. How did that happen in such conservative places? And why did Pakistan consider them a threat?
It certainly was a strong progressive and liberal movement with Pakhtun nationalist imperatives which was pro-Soviet. It was not a communist movement, strictly speaking. For instance, Bacha Khan, the great Pakhtun leader and reformer, was a Gandhian and not a communist. But he remained pro-Soviet and saw the support of the USSR crucial in realizing the rights of Pakhtuns.
Please also note that Pakhtun areas are tribal and consequently more egalitarian in nature than some other parts of Pakistan like Punjab and Sindh which remained thoroughly feudal and classist. Even the middle classes here represented conservative thought and, in fact, still do. It was natural for the Pakistani state to see any pro-Soviet linguistic or nationalist movements as a threat to a pro-US unitary state.
Do you see any relevance for socialist movements inspired by the Russian Revolution in India and Pakistan now?
What we witness now is the fall of the communist parties in India and a complete shift toward rightist politics in both India and Pakistan. On the other hand, Russia itself is a capitalist economy today, competing with the US and China for more market access and political influence in the world but they play by the same rules of the game.
There is no other ideology involved. However, for us here in India and Pakistan, there is a need for dynamic left-wing political and social movements than ever before to prevent us from completely slipping into fascism and totalitarianism. Marxists believe that history does not repeat itself. There may well be a desire to have replay of socialist revolutions that we saw in the 20th century but that will not happen.
Current structures work differently and a new kind of practice is required to first challenge and then overthrow right-wing politics - both in terms of economic oppression and religious fundamentalism.
Apart from Russia's Bolsheviks, China's Maoist influence was quite palpable on the sub-continent's socialist politics. How did those differences play out in Indian-Pakistani politics?
The split emerged clearly after 1962. CPI was factionalized and Pakistan saw student and labor movements splitting between pro-Soviet and pro-China camps. If you ask me, it further weakened the movement. Most time was spent on infighting rather than challenging the monopolistic capitalism taking roots in both India and Pakistan in tandem with feudal strongholds in Pakistan sustaining and strengthening.
That also reflects that the leftist leadership, particularly in Pakistan, was disingenuous and could not create an indigenous narrative.
Is it right to say that after the collapse of the Soviet Union, socialist movements in Pakistan lost their relevance?
In practical terms, they were not as impactful as they were in India even before the collapse of the Soviet Union. But of course, it was seen as a setback by left-wing political workers, writers and trade unionists.
Do socialists in South Asia have a counter-narrative to Islamic extremism and militancy in the region?
Most voices that you hear challenging extremism and militancy which international media regards today as liberal voices come from people who have left or centre-left background. However, there is a section among the social theorists and political activists in South Asia that clearly states that Islamic extremism is the Siamese twin of the neo-liberal global economic order. Because of that split in opinion, the counter-narrative is not articulated as clearly as it should be.

Video - Hundreds killed in week of Afghanistan attacks

په پاک افغان پوله ازغن تار


Two leaders of All Pakistan Shia Action Committee began hungers strike on Friday evening for release of those Shia Muslims who were subjected to enforced disappearance.

Sagheer Abid Rizvi and Syed Hassan Raza Sohail began observing fast unto death at their camp of hunger strike at Incholi. They said that they expressed solidarity with Allama Syed Hassan Zafar Naqvi who also began fast unto death at a police lock up in district south where he had courted arrest for release of missing Shias. 

These leaders vowed to continue their hunger strike till death if the Shia Muslims subjected to enforced disappearance were not released. They said that if there was any charge against them then these illegal detainees must be produced in courts where they could defend them through their defence lawyers. 

The Missing Shia Release Committee has so far hosted several protest rallies and demonstrations where the families of missing Shias demand justice for their bread-earners. They said that illegal detention of their bread-earners was tantamount to their economic massacre.

Pakistan - Human rights doublespeak

By Reema Omer

ON Oct 16, the UN General Assembly elected 15 states to serve in the UN Human Rights Council from 2018 to 2020. Pakistan was elected from the Asia-Pacific region, along with Nepal, Qatar and Afghanistan.
Top government officials hailed the victory as “an endorsement of Pakistan’s strong commitment to human rights”. However, Pakistan’s dismal human rights record raises some serious questions about this claim.

The UN Human Rights Council was established in 2006 pursuant to UN General Assembly Resolution 60/251 for “promoting universal respect for the protection of all human rights and fundamental freedoms for all, without distinction of any kind and in a fair and equal manner”.
Pakistan’s election to the Human Rights Council in itself is no victory for human rights in the country.
The council is comprised of 47 members, based on equitable geographical distribution, who are elected for a term of three years with the possibility of re-election for a further single term.

At least the elections this year for the Asia-Pacific region were competitive, with five states (Pakistan, Nepal, Qatar, Malaysia and Afghanistan) contesting for four available seats. In the other regional groups, states ensured that only as many names were on the ballot as there were vacancies to fill, removing any element of competition.
According to Resolution 60/251, “members elected to the Council shall uphold the highest standards in the promotion and protection of human rights”. The resolution also provides that “when electing members of the Council, Member States shall take into account the contribution of candidates to the promotion and protection of human rights and their voluntary pledges and commitments made thereto”.
Pakistan’s pledge in support of its candidacy for the Human Rights Council states that Pakistan is “deeply committed to the cause of universal human rights” and has made “considerable progress in the field of human rights despite challenges ranging from terrorism to resource constraints”.
It is striking how the government, both in its pledge as well as its reports to UN treaty-monitoring bodies and the Universal Periodic Review, is either silent on or grossly misrepresents some of the most egregious human rights issues facing Pakistan.
Take Pakistan’s blasphemy laws. The pledge contains no mention of these laws, even though the Human Rights Committee, the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, and the UN special rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers have all criticised them for being incompatible with international human rights law, both in substance and operation, and called for repeal or amendment.
In its national report for Pakistan’s upcoming Universal Periodic Review, the government actually claims “no one has been punished” for blasphemy in Pakistan, ignoring the dozens of people killed with impunity after blasphemy allegations, and countless others who have lost precious years of their lives in detention — often in solitary confinement — on fabricated blasphemy charges. In more than 90 per cent of the cases, courts go on to eventually acquit the accused, but not before they have had their reputations damaged, their lives deeply disrupted, and precious years lost.
The government also claimed in its pledge that the Commission of Inquiry on Enforced Disappearances is a “landmark achievement in the field of human rights”. It fails to note, however, that many victims’ groups — especially from Balochistan — have boycotted the commission, and other human rights organisations are deeply critical of its work. The Human Rights Committee and the UN Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances have also expressed concerns about the commission, including the insufficient resources allocated to it and law-enforcement agencies’ non-compliance with its binding orders.
Most significantly, the commission has completely failed in holding perpetrators accountable even though its mandate includes “fixing responsibility” on those responsible and registering FIRs against those involved either directly or indirectly in enforced disappearances.
In fact, not a single person has ever been convicted for enforced disappearance in Pakistan. Impunity for human rights violations — including for enforced disappearance — has become institutionalised and systemised. It is also essential in understanding why the practice of enforced disappearances has persisted and is spreading — both in terms of geographical reach and also the categories of people being targeted.
Alarmingly, since 2015, when Pakistan last served as a member of the council, the human rights situation in the country has deteriorated: the government resumed executions and Pakistan became one of the highest executioners in the world with nearly 500 hangings in less than three years; parliament enacted laws allowing military courts to try civilians for certain terrorism-related offences in secret trials; and the authorities started a new wave of crackdown on NGOs, journalists and human rights defenders, attempting even to close down NGOs on the ground that they presented “a very bleak picture” of the country’s human rights situation to the UN. All of this, of course, finds no mention in Pakistan’s pledge for candidacy for the Human Rights Council.
The truth is that while Pakistan claims to be a champion of human rights in international forums, international human rights law is a vilified concept domestically. Top government officials continue to call human rights standards alien to Pakistan’s ground realities, and appeals to assess Pakistan’s laws and policies against international human rights standards are shut down as promotion of a ‘foreign agenda’. In fact, not too long ago, the Islamabad High Court said in a judgement that NGOs working for the cause of human rights in Pakistan were “working against the ideology of Pakistan” and were spreading “obscenity, immorality and blasphemy” in the country.
Pakistan’s election to the Human Rights Council with 151 votes may be seen as a diplomatic success, but in itself is no victory for human rights in the country. To ensure Pakistan’s lofty rhetoric in New York and Geneva is matched by real progress for human rights on the ground here at home, the government — and indeed other branches of the state — must urgently take steps to address the serious human rights failings in the country, including the issues that have been identified above.

Pakistan - Politicians playing with fire

While campaigning for the NA-4 by-election,Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) chief Sirajul Haq criticised his political opponents for not attending terrorism and murder convict Mumtaz Qadri’s funeral prayers. Haq’s speech was in clear violation of the National Action Plan against terrorism. Qadri’s death had been sanctioned by the judicial system of the country. Haq’s speech is dangerously close to a vote of no confidence in this system and it is a clear incitement to violence. He needs to immediately retract his words. Otherwise, the authorities concerned must take notice and deal with the matter in accordance with the country’s laws and constitutional injunctions.
But the JI chief is not alone in indulging in such incitement speech. The irresponsible behaviour of portraying Qadri as a hero for killing a man he was supposed to protect seems to be in vogue among several other Pakistani politicians as well. Haq stands alongside PML-N’s Captain (retd) Safdar, Awami Muslim League’s (AML) Sheikh Rashid and leaders of the newly formed barelwi outfit Tehrik Labbaik Ya RasoolAllah (TLR).
These politicians represent the worst in our national politics. Disconnected completely from day-to-day problems of thousands of Pakistanis, these politicians do not have anything concrete to offer to electorate in terms of solving the longstanding problems of extremism; macro-economic and institutional stability; inter-provincial harmony; as well as FATA, Gilgit-Baltistan and Azad Jammu and Kashmir’s future.
These men and their hateful and inflammatory speeches must not be allowed to have any role in shaping the country’s future. To ensure that, lawful action must be initiated against them immediately.
The state cannot evade this responsibility. It should own the NAP and implement it in letter and spirit.
The sorry state of affairs becomes clear from the fact that Qadri, the terrorist, has a shrine built in his name near Islamabad in Bara Kahu area. Attendants at the shrine can buy pictures of Qadri and make donations to the shrine. This means that the damage done by Qadri didn’t stop with his hanging.
Thus, the state’s responsibility is not just to prosecute all individuals and organisations glorifying Qadri but also to immediately seal the shrine that is doing what Haq, Safdar and others did on around the clock without making headlines either.

Pakistan - Contours of the endgame

By Afrasiab Khattak

The creeping coup has taken quite a long time to reach the endgame.
It all started soon after the newly elected government of Muslim League led by Nawaz Sharif assumed power after winning the general election in 2013.
The fault lines between the elected civilian government and the so-called permanent state (security establishment) appeared quite soon.
The first issue that led to a rift between the two sides was the determination of Nawaz Sharif to normalize relations with the neighbors in general and with India in particular. The policy of reconciliation with India is a red rag to the security establishment as a confrontation with the big neighbor to the east is the ideological basis of the security state and a justification for the hegemony of security establishment over the state system. The second issue that polarized relations between civilian and military branches of the state were the decision of Nawaz Sharif government to put the former military dictator General (r) Pervez Musharraf on trial for abrogating the Constitution. General Musharraf has the dubious distinction of abrogating the Constitution twice; first in 1999 and again in 2007.
The government wanted to put him on trial for the second abrogation because unlike other cases in the past, the Supreme Court neither upheld the abrogation in 2007 nor was it later condoned by the Parliament.
So it appeared an open and shut case.
When the Special Tribunal decided to indict Pervez Musharraf in the high treason case, the retired general took refuge in a military hospital and refused to appear before the court. After a brief standoff between state institutions, the former dictator was allowed by the court on “ medical grounds” to go abroad after some behind the scene manipulations. Once out of the country, General Musharraf wasn’t shy of saying on record that he was helped by the former Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Raheel Sharif in going abroad.
Be that as it may, these developments made the gap between the elected government and the security establishment unbridgeable and the later decided to go for the former.
Most of the older political parties had learned their lesson in the musical chairs game of 1990. But Imran Khan of the PTI was prepared to lend his shoulder to the deep state for use against Nawaz Sharif government in hope for a shortcut to power through political engineering. The sit-in in 2014 against “ rigged elections “ was phase one. The nerve center of the civilian power in Islamabad was under a menacing physical siege for months. Parliamentarians and Supreme Court judges had to reach their chambers through back doors as the main gates were occupied by putschists who were publicly declaring their allegiance to the umpire who was expected to raise his finger for sending the elected Prime Minister (PM) back to the pavilion.
The rabble-rousers to justify the intervention of anti-democratic forces attacked state television station. Not only that.
Now we know that special messengers had also called upon the PM warning him to resign or be prepared to face the music of the martial law. But that was not to be for two reasons. One, most of the political parties rallied around the Constitutional system and publicly declared to unite against the putsch. Two, the PM kept his nerve and refused to bow to the machinations of the deep state. After the horrible massacre of school children and teachers in APS Peshawar in December 2014 in a terrorist attack, the putschists were forced to back off.
But as we learned later, the retreat was temporary. They were waiting for the first available opportunity. Leakage of Panama Papers in 2015 provided what was later called a God-given opportunity by the putschists. The deep state and its cheerleaders pounced on this opportunity in the name of “ accountability, “ and the creeping coup that had started in 2014 found a way to enter the next stage. As the contours of the endgame are now emerging the irony is crystalizing. After all, it is the same old game.
“ Accountability” has been the main political plank of all the putschists for showing the door to civilian government, from Ayub Khan to Zia-ul-Haq and Pervez Musharraf. The only difference is that the process would start after the dismissal of the civilian set up but this time rounds a sitting Prime Minister has been targeted by successful political engineering of the deep state.
Probably after 18th Constitutional Amendment (2010), there is no room for direct open interference by the non-democratic forces. So the higher judiciary equipped by JIT had to do the job. But the job is done quite crudely.
Out of hundreds of names in Panama Papers, only one family has been singled out for “accountability. ” As if that wasn’t enough, the deepest irony is that after so much sound and fury over Panama Nawaz Sharif wasn’t disqualified on it. He was disqualified over a UEA stay visa and the proposed salary from his son’s firm that wasn’t withdrawn by him. Even after his ouster, the siege of the government is intensifying, and it is quite evident that this government will not be allowed to hold Senate’s election in March 2018 and general elections after that.
The ground is being paved for some “ caretaker” set up.
Efforts for creating yet another king’s party are now a matter of public knowledge. Remarks by the Chief Justice about receiving “ calls from the public “ for taking action indicate the direction of the unfolding situation. In the past higher judiciary would be used to uphold the decision by the deep state for removing the civilian government. This time around it will be the advanced contingent in removing the civilian setup.
The answer to the following two questions can determine the outcome of the next round of the power politics. One, Nawaz Sharif during the last four years weakened himself by sidelining the Parliament and by ignoring the significance of alliance among democratic forces.
Has he learned his lessons and will he behave differently in the new round? Two, Pakistan is facing severe prospects of international isolation on the question of extremist militancy in the country. Will the security establishment, which cannot deny links with the elements as mentioned earlier anymore, is willing to or capable of jettisoning this liability?



Pakistan played witness to a curious theater of the absurd. Former military captain Muhammad Safdar Awan of the ruling PMLN attacked Pakistan’s persecuted Ahmadi community in Parliament, ostensibly to further the debate over a Khatm-e-Nabuwwat reference in the Election Bill 2017. The son-in-law of ousted premier Nawaz Sharif, who has faced the wrath of the clergy for his pro-minority statements, Safdar’s rhetoric stunned the House, with observers interpreting the outburst as a sign of a growing rift within the Sharif clan. Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal’s condemnation—two days later—on Twitter appeared to bolster this view.
Safdar’s charges were extravagant, some appearing to directly target his father-in-law and leader of the PMLN. During his tirade, he slammed a decision to rename the Quaid-e-Azam University’s Physics Center after “Ahmadi” Nobel Prizewinner Dr. Abdus Salam—despite his father-in-law approving it last year against the Council of Islamic Ideology’s objections. He also railed against the presumed appointment of Ahmadis in civil and military jobs, accusing the entire community of being disloyal Pakistanis. Not satisfied with merely attacking the marginalized, Safdar exited Parliament shouting slogans in favor of Mumtaz Qadri, the police commando who was hanged in 2016 for assassinating then-Punjab governor Salmaan Taseer.
Was it a moron’s defense against the charges of corruption he faces before NAB? Or was it a dumb attempt to separate himself from a “criminal” family he believes will soon be behind bars? Perhaps even he doesn’t know.
Safdar has long been a liability for the PMLN due to his—increasingly apparent—low IQ and tendency to deviate from party policy and fly off the handle. His party membership was even briefly suspended in 2012 after he caused rifts in the party’s Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa leadership.
How will Nawaz Sharif react to his latest outburst? And how will Safdar’s wife, Maryam Nawaz, accept this act of stabbing her father in the back if she doesn’t already despise her husband for being such an ass? For troubled Maryam, it might finally be time to make one of the most important decisions of her life.

PPP wants peaceful, tolerant Pakistan: Bilawal Bhutto

Pakistan Peoples Party's Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari has said the PPP wanted to establish a society of peace and tolerance in Pakistan where equal distribution of wealth could be ensured for well being of all the citizens.

Addressing his maiden public meeting in Hyderabad at a ground along the Bypass road here Wednesday night, Bilawal criticized the PPP's political opponents and narrated the development works which the party's provincial government has carried out in Sindh.

The PPP's supporters from the 9 districts of Hyderabad division gathered in the ground to watch the party's young leader speaking at the public meeting.

"PPP is a federal, democratic and republican party which wants to establish a society of equality and tolerance in Pakistan. The PPP wants equal distribution of wealth. The PPP wants to make Pakistan a sovereign and strong state," he said.

The PPP chairman said the Sindh government had been working to improve the education and health sectors while a special focus was being given to the girls education by means of different incentives.

"The new hospitals, trauma centers, kidney, liver and cardiac facilities which earlier existed only in Karachi are being established in rest of Sindh," he told.
Bilawal paid tribute to the martyrs of Oct 18, 2007, Karsaz incident in which a terrorist attack killed around 180 people and injured 500 others.

He recalled the political struggles and sacrifices of his grandfather former Prime Minister Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto and his mother former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto, who both headed the PPP.

He said Bhutto preferred martyrdom but he did not bow down his head before a military dictator while his mother despite threats to her life returned from exile to Pakistan and embarked upon a movement to restore democracy in the country.

Bilawal questioned the PPP's supporters that would they forsake the sacrifices of his grandfather, mother and other martyrs of the PPP and let the flag of political struggle fall down. "Shall we allow the politicians who were raised by the dictators to win?" he asked.

Bilawal said the PPP supporters should not only mourn deaths of the martyrs but should also play their part in bringing the people to the book who were responsible for their deaths and for denying democracy to Pakistani people.

The PPP chairman said some people use corruption only as a slogan and they think that end of corruption would provide a solution to all the problems.

"But they don't know that corruption is a symbol of a rotten and exploitative system. Until the system of plunder remains, until the peasants, labours and the poor remain oppressed under cruelty and until people remain deprived of basic rights, till then this problem can't be resolved," he contended.

He added that putting an end to the problems which exist in the country not a change of faces but a change of the system was required. "Our struggle is against this system, against this exploitation," he reiterated.

The PPP leader decried that the Indus River system Authority (IRSA) was not providing due share of water to Sindh, pointing out IRSA's recent announcement of reducing Sindh's share by 20% to 30% for Rabi crop season.
"This will cause huge losses for agriculture in the province," he warned. Biawal acknowledged that though the country faced a shortage of water, he blamed the authority for its alleged unjust water sharing.

He said Sindh was located in the tail-end and which gave the province a higher right over the river water.
"What justice is it that when there is excess water, they release the water towards Sindh and drown the province and when there is shortage, they leave the people thirsty," he observed.

Bilawal emphasized on adopted water conservation methods in order to make an efficient use of low supply of water and told the people about the measures which the Sindh government had taken in that regard.

Chief Minister Sindh Syed Murad Ali Shah recalled the Oct 18, 2007, incident and told that after the first explosion the supporters ran towards the truck in which Benazir was travelling.

"And then the second bomb went off killing 180 people but even then there were other supporters who tried to reach the truck to ensure that their leader was safe," he added.
Leader of Opposition in the National Assembly Syed Khursheed Ahmed Shah questioned the youth, intellectuals, writers, poets and the opinion makers to answer why the incidents which killed the PPP's leaders and their families had happened.

"Why shouldn't I ask you that why July 5, 1977, April 5, 1979, July 1984 killing of Shahnawaz Bhutto, September, 1996, killing of Murtaza Bhutto and Oct 18, 2007, incidents happened. Why only the PPP's leadership had been targeted this way?" he asked.

Former Chief Minister Sindh Syed Qaim Ali Shah, Senior Sindh Minister and President of PPP Sindh Nisar Ahmed Khuhro, Secretary Information of PPP Moula Bux Chandio and other party leaders also addressed the public meeting.

Pakistan - Farhatullah Babar quits Senate defence panel

Pakistan People’s Party Senator Farhatullah Babar on Friday resigned as a member of the Senate’s Standing Committee on Defence due to ‘personal reasons’.

Speaking to The Nation after quitting the membership, the lawmaker said he will stay as a member of the Senate and had only quit the membership of the committee.
“I have not quit as a senator. I don’t want to go in details why I resigned as member of the Senate’s Standing Committee on Defence. The reasons are personal,” he said.
Babar, however, said he was against the parliamentarians briefing the military leaders at the General Headquarters but “this is not the reason for my resignation.”
He said: “To be honest, I did not even go to the recent briefing where the senators visited the GHQ for a meeting with the military people.”
The lawmaker said in principle he was against such briefing by the lawmakers to the generals at the military facilities. “This has always been my policy. I never attended such briefings. I think, they (the military officers) should visit us if they want any meetings,” he said.
Babar was elected as senator in March 2012 and will retire in March 2018. He has been replaced by PPP's Farooq H Naek in the committee.
Last month, the members of the Senate and National Assembly defence committees had visited the GHQ and met with Army Chief Qamar Javed Bajwa. During that meeting, Gen Bajwa had said he wanted regular interaction with parliamentarians. Earlier in the day, PPP General Secretary Central Punjab Nadeem Afzal Chan had resigned from his party post.
Chan claimed he should not hold a senior post in the party after his brother Waseem Afzal Chan joined the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf. In his resignation letter, Chan assured the leadership that he will not quit the party. Party sources said that Chan’s resignation had been rejected by both PPP Chairman Bilawal Bilawal Bhutto and Co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari. “Nadeem Chan has been asked by the leadership to continue as the party’s central Punjab general secretary,” a close aide to the Bhutto family told The Nation.

#Pakistan - ‘Bilawal, Zardari don’t want to meet Nawaz in current circumstances’

Pakistan Peoples Party Chairperson Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari and Co-Chairperson Asif Zardari have said they will not help former prime minister Nawaz Sharif in the current political circumstances, said Senator Farhatullah Babar.
While talking to the media in the federal capital on Saturday, Babar said the PPP leaders do not want to meet Nawaz given the present scenario because if they would do so it would send across a wrong message.
PPP always believed in the politics of reconciliation, but it was Nawaz who would back out, Babar added.
Therefore, the senator said, Bilawal and Zardari wanted matters to be solved as per the law. However, Babar added, PPP would intervene and come to the fore if democracy is threatened in any way.
About legal proceedings, the PPP senator said he believed the documents in Nawaz’s case were pretty authentic, which would soon take the case to a logical end.
Moreover, he added, Nawaz and every citizen have the right to fair trial under Article 10A (Right to Fair Trial) of the Constitution, which “extends to not only criminal charges but also to civil rights and obligations”. If Nawaz has reservations over laws not been implemented in their true spirit then he can challenge the case, Babar said.
To a question Babar said those who left PPP will soon realise their mistake.
In a statement issued a day earlier, Zardari was quoted as demanding immediate arrest of the Sharifs. The PPP co-chairperson said Nawaz would send them secret messages for reconciliation but his party rejected the idea.