Saturday, April 20, 2013
From Print Edition
Despite being on the invitation list, most political parties chose not to attend the reception hosted by the caretaker chief minister.
The reception was held at the Chief Minister’s House in honour of foreign diplomats, prominent citizens, politicians, businessmen, senior journalists, artistes, players etc.
Justice (retd) Zahid Kurban Alavi had invited all political and religious parties as a sign of the caretaker set-up’s impartiality.
However, Pakistan People’s Party Sindh General Secretary Taj Haider, Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz leaders Ghous Ali Shah and Salim Zia, Jamaat-e-Islami leaders Mohammad Hussain Mehanti and Nasrullah Shaji and Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl’s Qari Usman and Aslam Ghori were the only politicians who attended the event.
None from the Muttahida Qaumi Movement, the Pakistan Muslim League-Functional, the Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid, the National People’s Party, the Tehreek-e-Insaf and the Awami National Party were present there.
The would-be CM?
Those present at the reception noted with surprise that PML-N leader Ghous Ali Shah, who is contesting for both the national and provincial assembly seats in Khairpur, was behaving as if he was already the chief minister. He asked secretaries and other bureaucrats about their work and advised the officers to remain in contact with him. He also warned Caretaker Energy Minister Dr Shafqat Abbasi that if uninterrupted power supply to his home was not ensured, he would strictly deal with the people responsible for it after the elections.
Shah has served as the chief minster in 1985 and later as an adviser to the prime minister on Sindh affairs with the powers of the chief minister in 1998-99 when the Sindh assembly was dissolved following the murder of then Sindh governor Hakim Said. Talking to journalists at the reception, Alavi said the caretaker set-up would leave as soon as the elections were held and he and his cabinet members were aware about the task assigned to them.