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PML-N denies calling Jahangir Tareen “sugar thief”?

Following the shortage of wheat flour in the country and the subsequent price hike, sugar had also gone missing from the market. As a result of this, the PML-N has often lashed out at PM Khan for being friends with the "sugar mafia".

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It appears that PML-N is taking a U-turn on allegations against estranged PTI leader Jahangir Khan Tareen (JKT) amid the whole no-trust move scenario. As the Opposition looks to complete its number for the no-trust move, it seems to be all praise for JKT.

To clarify, PML-N leader Muhammad Zubair resolutely maintained that the party did not accuse JKT of stealing sugar. He made the statements during a talk show for a private media channel. SAPM on Youth Affairs Usman Dar was also present. Clips of the show are making the rounds on social media.

During the show, the talk turned to PML-N and JKT’s supposed partnership in the no-trust move that the Opposition filed yesterday. Muhammad Zubair said that they didn’t jump the gun on the no-trust move. They had the backing of Tareen Group which represents a sizeable number both in Punjab Assembly and National Assembly.

Read more: Will Jahangir Tareen move against PTI govt?

Regarding this, the host questioned Muhammad Zubair on whether JKT was an “ATM” or a “sugar thief” as previously labeled by PML-N on several occasions.

“I never called him sugar thief. May have called him an ATM,” Muhammad Zubair said. “I have always maintained that we cannot call JKT a sugar thief.”

The host grilled the PML-N leader and asked who PML-N spokesperson Marriyum Aurangzeb referred to with those labels.

“If you take out the records of last year, we never called him that,” the PML-N leader said.

PML-N’s accusations against JKT

Important to note, in 2020, following the shortage of wheat flour in the country and the subsequent price hike, sugar had also gone missing from the market. Taking notice of the situation, the prime minister had formed a committee to find out those responsible for the crises.

According to the inquiry committee, there are six groups that control about 51% of the production of sugar in Pakistan, JKT’s Group JDW, controls 19.97% of production, RYK Group (Khusro Bakhtiar) group control 12.24%, Al-Moiz Group controls 6.8%, Tandlianwala Group 4.9%, Omni Group 1.7% and the Sharif family owns 4.5% of the production. However, JKT stated that he is not responsible for the sugar crisis.

Read more: Is Jahangir Tareen responsible for the rising price of sugar?

As a result of this, the PML-N has often lashed out at PM Khan for being friends with the “sugar mafia”. Furthermore, the host also played a clip of PML-N Vice President Maryam Nawaz calling JKT a thief and ordering some form of petition against him. The timeline of the video is however unclear.

Pertinent to mention, PML-N accuses PM Khan of corruption by allowing mafias to usurp money. In December 2021, the PML-N spokesperson Marriyum Aurangzeb, alleged that Imran Khan was clearly and directly involved in every single one of the corruption acts that robbed the nation.

She said the prime minister gave permission to export sugar and flour when he was explicitly told that there was a shortage in the country. Later, she alleged, the prime minister allowed import of sugar and flour at extremely costly rates and even gave needless subsidies to his “mafia friends”.

As for the “ATM” label, the PML-N has accused JKT of paying for PM Khan’s expenses. In the same press conference, Marriyum Aurangzeb said Jahangir Tareen used to give him Rs3.5 million every month.

Read more: PTI govt vows legal action against Justice Wajihuddin for defaming PM Khan

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