Amid reports of a rift between opposition parties as the Azadi March of Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam Fazl (JUI-F) to Islamabad continues, cracks are also emerging among ranks of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), The Current has learnt.
According to sources, PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif’s orders were disobeyed by the Punjab leadership of his party on Wednesday as 70,000 people were not mobilised to welcome Fazl’s caravan in Lahore.
The Current reached out to several PML-N leaders to confirm or deny what rumour had and on the condition of anonymity, one of them rejected the same.
“Both MNAs and MPAs of the PML-N were in Lahore to receive Maulana’s caravan and they did. We even distributed food among his buses, which were over a thousand in number,” the PML-N leader added.
“There were six different points in Lahore where our party members gathered to welcome and facilitate Maulana Fazl. Our workers gathered to welcome the caravan hours before its arrival.”
When asked why the PML-N leadership was nowhere to be seen at the Lahore stage of the Azadi March as JUI-F leaders addressed a mammoth gathering, the PML-N leader said they were asked to come on stage at the last minute and that too by a junior party worker.
“Not Maulana or any other JUI-F leader invited us on stage and we told them that we will come in an hour. However, later we were told that the caravan will not stop for us.”
The PML-N leader also said that they are on their way from Lahore to Islamabad with a huge crowd and plan on holding a small rally in the federal capital even though their leadership has been told by the JUI-F that the Azadi March will commence tomorrow.
When The Current reached out to other PML-N leaders for confirmation of the postponement, former National Assembly (NA) speaker Ayaz Sadiq said, “Akram Durrani Sahib called me today and said that Maulana will address Azadi March at 2 pm tomorrow after Friday prayers in Islamabad.”