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Divisions in PTI Karachi after leadership extends hand to MQM

The Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI)’s offer to the Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P) that it join it on the treasury benches has caused unrest among the leaders of the party’s Karachi chapter, sources told DawnNewsTV on Tuesday.

Earlier this week, a PTI delegation led by Imran Khan’s pointman Jahangir Tareen flew into Karachi from Islamabad and invited former nemesis MQM-P to join the federal government.

The MQM-P won six National Assembly seats — four in Karachi and two in Hyderabad — in the July 25 elections, compared to 24 NA seats in 2013.

However, even with just six seats, the MQM-P has become an important factor in national politics, since the PTI lacks a simple majority in the lower house of parliament and cannot form a government on its own.

According to sources in the party, several newly-elected party leaders, including Faisal Vawda, have opposed the decision to approach MQM and decided to record their protest with the party’s supreme leadership if a deal is finalised.

A PTI leader, who is not pleased with these developments, said that like-minded party workers believe that a coalition with the MQM would be very harmful to the party.

The others, the source added, argue that a coalition with the MQM is the need of the hour. The source added that those who are opposing the idea had recused themselves from accompanying a party delegation that visited MQM leaders at the party’s Bahadurabad office.

PTI leaders Tareen, Arif Alvi, Firdous Shamim Naqvi and Imran Ismail had visited the MQM-P’s temporary headquarters in Bahadurabad area and met its convener, Dr Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui, on Monday evening.

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