Syed Muhammad Fahad Ali |
Chief Minister Punjab Mian Shehbaz Sharif has been elected as the permanent head of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) by their general council today. He had earlier been elected as the interim president of the party on 27th February after the Supreme Court disqualified former premier Nawaz Sharif as the head of the PML-N in the Elections Act 2017 case.
The glorious All India Muslim League (AIML) once headed by the Founder of Pakistan Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah later (de)evolved to become the PML-N. The Nawaz in the PML-N is very significant as it is the only ruling party to be named after a person. Most parties are built around ideologies, struggles, and agendas but the PML-N is one of the few gifted parties in the world to revolve around an individual.
One can imagine Shehbaz’s frustration at his brother’s actions and his lack of power to speak up against him. It’s only a matter of time before he decides to put his foot down and rid the PML-N of the Nawaz for good.
Now that the great and glorious leader/founder of the PML-N is out of the picture, the party feels quite hollow. The cult of personality enjoyed by Nawaz has only been enjoyed by a few other leaders. Despite the grand personality of the old leader, the new party chief, Shahbaz Sharif, is unlikely to worship the withered idol of Nawaz Sharif. If the party can be named after Nawaz then why not Shahbaz, he is his brother after all.
Shahbaz being a man of a strong sense of justice will not allow such a great atrocity to happen, of all people, to him. The temptation is strong, he must rename the party, and after all, it is not the first time that the party is being split. There are already the PML-Q, PML-F, PML-Z and the PML-ABCD so why not a PML-S? Shahbaz has been loyal to the party and to his party from the start to the end, it’s time he reaps the fruits of his loyalty.
The party under Shehbaz’s leadership is unlikely to follow Nawaz’s strategy of judicial confrontation. He has done more harm than good for the party by aggressive strategies, leading a number of leaders to face contempt cases. One can imagine Shehbaz’s frustration at his brother’s actions and his lack of power to speak up against him. It’s only a matter of time before he decides to put his foot down and rid the PML-N of the Nawaz for good.