Kh Asif says Qureshi to quit PTI once he finds alternative

ISLAMABAD:  Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi intensified contacts with allied parties.

efence Minister Khawaja Asif has claimed that incarcerated Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Vice-Chairman Shah Mahmood Qureshi will leave the Imran Khan-led party as soon as he finds an alternative.

Asif’s comments come days after sources had said that PTI’s key deserters met Qureshi in Adiala jail and tried to convince him to part ways with the former prime minister — who was voted out in April last year.

However, Zain Qureshi — son of Qureshi — dismissed the perception that his father would part ways with Khan or the former ruling party.

Over 80 PTI leaders and lawmakers have already parted ways with Khan over, what they claimed, May 9 mayhem when party workers and supporters attacked public and military installations almost across the country.

“Shah Mahmood had told me he wanted to join the PML-N [Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz] when he left the PPP [Pakistan Peoples Party],” said the defence minister while speaking during a local TV show on Friday.

Asif, who is also a PML-N senior leader, said that the former foreign minister had also met PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif in this regard.

Speaking about the May 9 riots that erupted after the deposed premier’s arrest, the federal minister said that the establishment was challenged in May. “Mutiny was broken out in May, do they not know what is the punishment of rebellion against the army?” he said.

“The establishment, politicians and the people are on the same page regarding the May 9 events,” he said, adding that the state was attacked in that month.