PTI government is afraid

Is PTI govt afraid of going to Supreme Court on Sind Govt JIT Report issue? Ali Zaidi, senior leader of the ruling party and a federal minister, has accused the Sindh government of hiding the original Joint Investigation Team’s (JIT) report against Uzair Baloch, a notorious gangster who has confessed to having killed 198 persons. He demands Supreme Court to take suo-moto notice on this.

But the question is will the federal government file a reference against the Sindh government for tempering with a report prepared by the JIT? Some analysts believe that the PTI government is afraid of going to Supreme Court.

Muhammad Latif Khosa, PPP leader, former Governor of Punjab and a prominent lawyer, appeared in a talk-show, Hard Talk Pakistan with Dr. Moeed Pirzada, a prominent TV anchor and political commentator, and argued that the federal government shall not go to the Supreme Court of Pakistan. “I can tell you that the government is not going to file any reference or petition against the Sindh government in this matter. It won’t go to the apex court because it cannot lose its allies” His reference was towards “Grand Democratic Alliance (GDA)” and MQM. PTI with slim majority in National Assembly needs both GDA and MQM.

Uzair Baloch reportedly confessed that he was in direct contact with the PPP leadership and that he had carried out targeted killings in the city on the orders of PPP leaders. Some of these orders, he claimed, came directly from Asif Ali Zardari, PPP co-chairman, Zulfiqar Mirza, husband of Dr. Fahmida Mirza and former Sindh home minister, Sharjeel Memon, senior PPP leader, and Owais Muzaffar Tappi.

But PPP leaders and most analysts point out that most orders came from Zulfiqar Mirza who was then Zardari’s main man in Sindh. Therefore, implies Khosa, the PTI does not seem to be in a position to go to the court and demand an examination of the reports related to Baloch or Baldia Factory – because Mirza’s wife, Fehmida Mirza, a GDA leader, is sitting in National Assembly with PTI. Either GDA or MQM is allegedly involved in these organised crimes.

Where is the original JIT report?

Ali Zaidi held a press conference along with Shibli Faraz, Federal Minister for Information, on the recently-released JIT report on Lyari gangster Uzair Baloch.

Read More: Uzair Baloch: A gangster, an enemy spy and a former PPP’s supporter

The minister claimed that the “original” report was 43 pages long while the one released by the Sindh government was based on 35 pages. “Today, I am presenting the report in front of you that contains signatures on every page,” said Zaidi. “Special Branch, CID, ISI, MI, IB and Pakistan Rangers’ [officials] signatures are present in this report,” he added.

He said that the “original” report also contained the names of Dr Zulfikar Mirza, Faryal Talpur, Abdul Qadir Patel, Nisar Morai, Yousuf Baloch and Sharjeel Inam Memon, which have not been mentioned in the report released on Monday.

As some sources claim that PTI government is afraid of going to Supreme Court, Zaidi requested Chief Justice Gulzar Ahmed to take a suo motu notice on the Uzair Baloch JIT report released by the Sindh government, saying the original report had been tampered with.

PTI’s challenge: Between the devil and the deep blue sea?

Notably, as Akhtar Mengal’s Balochistan National Party has withdrawn its support from Prime Minister Imran Khan’s government, PTI is making all attempts to keep the coalition intact.

To form the government, a party needs at least 172 seats. Interestingly, even after losing Mengal’s support, the PTI and coalition parties have 180 seats in NA. PM Khan’s PTI has 156 seats in the assembly, while it has the support of seven members of Karachi-based MQM-P. With three lawmakers in the National Assembly and 14 in the Sindh Assembly, GDA is PTI’s second important ally in Sindh after MQM-P. Currently, Fahmida Mirza, GDA’s leader and Zulfiqar Mirza’s wife, is serving as Federal Minister for Inter-Provincial Coordination.

Read More: Uzair Baloch: better a dead man or living threat to PPP?

It is important to recall that Prime Minister Imran Khan is known for his politically bold decisions. There were rumors that the report of sugar crisis shall never be made public. Sheikh Rasheed Ahmad, Federal Minister for Railway, even claimed in a private talk show that the report was unlikely to be published. “There shall be no report, I think,” he said. “Any report can disrupt the political process in the country, therefore, I believe that there may be some tactics to delay the report,” he added.

Not only the report was made public but the concerned authorities had been asked to conduct formal inquiries and file references against those involved the scam.

In 2018, during the Senate election, some lawmakers were accused of taking money to sell out their votes. Imran Khan, Chairman Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI), decided to take action against 20 lawmakers for “participating in horse-trading”. The lawmakers were expelled from the party.

This move became more significant due to one obvious reason that the general elections were not away and PTI made such a big, unusual move.  “I have no doubt that the PTI will have to face consequences. But, we are ready to pay any price to purge our party of corrupt elements,” Khan said, adding these MPAs deceived party activists who had voted them to power.

Recently, Prime Minister Imran Khan ordered to make all plane crash report public. The decision led to the disclosure of some quite disturbing facts; piolets holding fake degrees. Resultantly, the European Union’s aviation safety agency said that Pakistan’s national airline will not be allowed to fly into Europe for at least six months.

Read More: Uzair Jan Baloch, Karachi’s most wanted man, confesses to have killed 198 persons

Apparently, PTI government is afraid of its allies therefore appears to caught between the devil and the deep blue sea. But sources claim that the prime minister may allow Zaidi to go ahead and approach the apex court. Zaidi has already said that the premier stands by him in the present matter.