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Political crisis in Balochistan

The PML-N-led coalition government in Balochistan faces a serious crisis after its several lawmakers joined the opposition parties for tabling a no-confidence motion against Chief Minister Sanaullah Zehri. The PML-N legislators are among 14 members of the 65-strong Balochistan Assembly who have revolted against their leader in the house, putting their signatures on the motion against the CM. To deal with the brewing political crisis in Balochistan, the central PML-N leadership has formed a three-member committee comprising Leader of the House in Senate Raja Zafarul Haq, Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal and Railways Minister Khawaja Saad Rafiq.

The committee members have been instructed to redress the grievances of the defectors and bring them back to the party fold. According to a report, some annoyed lawmakers are not ready to hold talks with anyone.

The Balochistan Assembly Secretariat has formally notified members of the assembly about the impending no-confidence motion against the CM. According to officials, the speaker has summoned the assembly on January 9, and the situation will be clear that day.

The National Party and the PkMAP have pledged to support the chief minister, defending his right to complete his constitutional tenure. Senator Kabir Mohammad Shahi said that it would be undemocratic to dislodge the CM in this manner. In a tweet, Sarfraz Bugti claimed that the reports of his dismissal were untrue and that he had tendered his resignation. Bugti had previously announced that he would resign in support of the motion.

If the no-confidence motion against the CM is passed, the future of both the PML-N allies will be doomed. It will set the scene for either a new coalition government or fresh elections. It is looking that political crisis in the province is likely to get worse in coming days. The top PML-N leadership should take serious notice of the grievances of the MPAs and initiate investigations on the allegations against the Chief Minister. Even members of the treasury benches are not satisfied with his performance. Increase political uncertainly in the province is not in the interest of the country as it may affects upcoming Senate elections. The concerns are being raised regarding these developments and chance of involvement of undemocratic forces cannot be ruled out. The government is about to complete its tenure and Chief Minister should be given time to complete its tenure smoothly. All political parties should discourage any undemocratic move at this stage and play their due role for the strengthening democracy in the province.

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