Lahore: Pakistan's ousted prime minister Nawaz Sharif on Saturday met senior PML-N leaders and discussed a strategy for countering groupings within the ruling party, according to a media report.
The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) is currently facing political uncertainty in the wake of corruption cases against its top leadership. The meeting took place amidst reports that the government was planning to put up for a vote a controversial constitutional amendment bill in the National Assembly that proposes the right to appeal against an order of the Supreme Court passed in a suo motu notice case, the Express Tribune reported.
The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) has reacted strongly to the move, describing it as a bid to ease pressure on Sharif. Sharif, 67, who returned from London on Thursday to face the court cases against him, resigned as prime minister in July after the country's Supreme Court disqualified him over undeclared income.
Three cases were registered by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) on September 8 against Sharif, his children and son-in-law in the Accountability Court Islamabad, following a verdict by the Supreme Court.
In a meeting with National Assembly Speaker Sardar Ayaz Sadiq, Railways Minister Khawaja Saad Rafique and Chaudhry Muneer at his residence, Sharif expressed concerns over reports of groupings within the party ranks, the daily reported.
In the meeting, the senior party leaders decided to launch a mass public contact campaign for the 2018 general elections starting with a rally in Abbottabad on November 12. The schedule for future election rallies will be announced after the Abbottabad rally.
The political future of Sharif, who leads the country's most powerful political family and the ruling PML-N party, has been hanging in balance. If convicted, Sharif can be jailed. Sharif's family alleges that the cases against him are politically motivated.