Why PML-N decided to expel five MPAs from the party?

 What legal options these MPAs now have?

The PML-N finally announced to expel its five members of Punjab assembly from the party for keeping contact with CM Punjab and other PTI leaders. These MPAs met with CM Punjab without the permission of the party leadership. The decision, approved by senior party leadership, was announced by PML-N General Secretary Ahsan Iqbal. The party leadership remained silent on this issue for nearly six months. 

The MPAs include Ashraf Ansari (PP 57 Gujranwala), Jaleel Sharaqpuri (PP-139 Sheikhupura) Faisal Niazi (PP 209 Khanewal), Nishat Daha (PP 206 Khanewal) and Moulvi Ghayasuddin (PP 47 Narowal).

The party also decided to file references in the Election Commission against the expelled MAPs to disqualify them for violating the party discipline.The meeting with CM might not be strong ground for disqualification. 

The MPAs has the option to contest the ouster from the party or resign from their seats to contest the fresh election on PTI ticket. They can continue as MPAs till the decision of Election Commission. It is more likely that they will opt for legal battle to protect their seats instead of resign and reelection. 

According to election laws, the question of disqualification arise only when A member of assembly votes against the party policy during the election of leader of the house and on budget. tHe members have to follow the party policy on both occasions. 

On the other matters, they have the right to go against the party policies. They cannot change political loyalty or defect to any other party. pakistan has a history of defections and forming forward blocks. It seems that history is going to repeat itself. the lessons are learnt from past mistakes and practices. The politics of forward blocks and defections might benefit the ruling party in short term but it harm the political process in the long run. 

We have seen the devastating consequences of confrontation between rival political parties in the 1990s.   

This decision comes after PML-N supreme leader and former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has toughen his stance on PTI government and establishment. The former prime minister made a hard hitting speech in the APC of opposition parties on September 20 after keeping the complete silence for nearly 10 months.

The former PM has made two speeches in the top level meetings of PML-N leadership. Since the APC and formation of opposition alliance PDM (Pakistan Democratic Movement), PML-N has decided not to cooperate with ruling PTI in the parliament. Nawaz Sharif has also barred his party leaders to meet with military leadership.

Nawaz Sharif is clearly on the collision course with ruling PTI and the powerful establishment. In last two weeks, Nawaz Sharif has brought back the narrative of ‘Vote to izzat doo’ and civilian supremacy. A narrative adopted by former PM soon after disqualification by Supreme Court in Panama case.

In this situation, the party leadership wants to send a strong message to party parliamentarians to fall in line with party line and narrative or ready to face action. Through these expulsions, the party sends a clear and strong message to its members of parliament and provincial assemblies.  

The other reason seems to be that PML-N is preparing for the protest movement against PTI government, so it wants to get rid of all those who are not ready to follow the hard line of leadership. PML-N wants to make it sure that no such defections took place in the middle of the protest movement. 

Let's see what happened now. What emerge as the result of this decision will be interesting to see. More defections, splits and a forward block or more cohesive and unified  PML-N. Let's wait and see.

The decision about expelling the rebel lawmakers was announced by PML-N Secretary-General Ahsan Iqbal after the approval by leadership. In this connection, the document was signed by Rana Sanaullah in his capacity as the provincial president.

PML-N has suspended membership of Lawmakers who visited CM Usman Buzdar in March 2020. But no further action was taken since then. 


The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) suspended the party membership of six Punjab Assembly lawmakers and issued show-cause notices to them for “violating party discipline and contravening rules” by meeting Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar and “expressing confidence in the prime minister’s and the CM’s leadership.”

On March 10, the six lawmakers, along with one Punjab Assembly lawmaker from the PPP, had called on the Punjab chief minister.

According to the notices, signed by PML-N Punjab General Secretary Sardar Awais Khan Laghari, a “press release in electronic and print media on March 10 showed [the lawmakers] meeting Buzdar. In the past, a meeting with the prime minister, who is also the chairman of the PTI, was also held without any legal/moral justification or prior intimation.”

It added that the above information had not been denied by the lawmakers in the media. “Hence, your basic party memberships have been suspended forthwith and you are hereby directed to show cause as to why the violations were committed,” the notice said.

It directed the lawmakers to submit a reply in this regard within the next seven days, adding that a failure to do so would result in legal action being initiated against them.

                                                                     Khalid Bhatti 

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