Prime Minister Imran Khan was in Karachi where he had a busy day meeting with disgruntled allies and opponents along other social engagements. As problems increased, the prime minister had to take matters into his own hands to resolve a wide range of political issues.
The prime minister had a cordial meeting with Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah who had a heap of reservations. The chief minister has earlier complained that he was not informed about the premier’s visit to Karachi. Sindh Govenor Imran Ismail was also present in the meeting which discussed federal-funded projects in Karachi that have been stalled due to a lack of funds.
PM Imran Khan also conceded to the Sindh government’s demand to replace the inspector-general police, and even agreed on the names proposed by the provincial government for the top policy chief. The thaw in relations between both sides suggests that the prime minister is willing to work with the Sindh government on issues concerning Karachi.
The prime minister met GDA leaders and all seems to be fine with the allied party. The MQM-P was completely shunned during the visit as no meeting was arranged to placate them. Two PTI delegations had earlier met with the MQM-P and failed to address their concerns. It seems that PTI has decided not to fall for the party’s antics anymore but rather find ways to work with the PPP government.
This is a win-win situation for the PTI as by shunning the MQM-P it can now concentrate on speeding up the pace of development projects in Karachi. The MQM-P wants a hefty Karachi package, to retain its ministries, along with the reopening of its offices and release of their workers. The PTI is not willing to dole out huge sums to the MQM-P knowing well that they are used to secure the party’s vote bank in Karachi.
There is no imminent threat to the PTI government if the MQM-P backs out. The party has only seven seats and the opposition is mired in conflicts and cannot topple the government. If the MQM-P stops support, its ordeal will only increase as cases might be registered against party leaders. The PTI hopes to capture all remaining seats in Karachi in the next elections and end the MQM-P’s run in Karachi.
The PPP also gets to benefit from this arrangement as it does not have the popularity in Karachi as the rest of the province. The Sindh government realises that reconciliation with the PTI is the best possible option in such circumstances. The MQM-P seems to have struck its own foot with its blackmailing tactics and will instead lose the most in the current political scenario.
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