PPP issues show cause notices to Safdar, Sherry
By Asim Yasin
ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) has started taking action against the party’s old guard, apparently for violating the party’s discipline, in one case by suspending party membership.
On Saturday, a close aide of Shaheed Benazir Bhutto, Dr Safdar Abbassi and Sherry Rehman became the “first victims” as they had participated in the Capital Talk of Geo television.
PPP Secretary General Jehangir Badr has served a show cause notice on Dr Safdar Abbassi, while suspending his basic membership of the party as well as from the Central Executive Committee of the party.
“Yes, I got the letter from party General Secretary Jehangir Badr on my suspension from the CEC membership,” said Dr Safdar Abbassi while talking to this scribe on Saturday evening.
Dr Safdar Abbassi said he had got the show cause notice for participating in the ‘Capital Talk’ on October 20 and while he was to reply to the notice, on Saturday he received a letter from the party secretary general regarding his suspension as a member of the Central Executive Committee of the PPP.
Besides, Dr Safdar Abbassi, the show cause notice has also been served on former information minister Sherry Rehman for participating in the Geo programme. Even a group of PPP workers gathered outside the residence of Sherry Rehman in Karachi on Saturday and raised slogans against her.
Sherry Rehman described the protest of a few people, apparently PPP workers, as a conspiracy of a ‘group’, not of genuine party workers.
Talking to The News, Sherry Rehman said she got the show cause notice for her participation in Geo programme. She was perturbed by the siege of her Karachi house for four hours by some people carrying the PPP flags.
Sherry Rehman, who flew back to Karachi on Saturday evening from Islamabad after she was informed about the siege of her home, told The News that she had talked with the local chapter of Karachi PPP, and they expressed ignorance about the siege. She said that she was defending her party in the show for which she had been issued the notice.
She demanded that the government should keep an eye on such protesters like the ones who protested outside her residence.
PPP Secretary General Jehangir Badr, along with party Information Secretary Fauzia Wahab, in a press conference last Saturday announced to boycott programmes of the Jang Group and warned that strict action would be taken against those party leaders who violated the party discipline.
Dr Safdar Abbassi, who was a close aide of Shaheed Benazir Bhutto and has given sacrifices for the party, was on the hit list of the top PPP leadership after the martyrdom of Shaheed Benazir Bhutto and was sidelined from the party affairs since then. He was not invited to the last meeting of the CEC, but when this question was raised, the top leadership of the party termed it “miscommunication”.
His spouse, Naheed Khan, who was the political secretary to Benazir Bhutto till her last breath, was also sidelined from the party affairs.
However, a few days back when a question was asked from Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani about the remarks some PPP leaders had made about senior journalists of Jang/Geo Group, the prime minister maintained a distance from the statements of his party leaders, saying that he had good relations with the group.
Source: The News