‘PPP is a family’: Bilawal welcomes Zehri, Qadir Baloch and others to party fold


QUETTA – PPP chairperson Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari on Sunday formally welcomed former PML-N leaders Nawab Sanaullah Zehri and retired Lt Gen Abdul Qadir Baloch and others to the PPP.

Addressing a gathering in Quetta, Bilawal said the new additions would help the PPP become stronger and win the next elections.

“The manner in which you have joined the party, we will give strength to each other and will work hard side-by-side and struggle,” he told the new entrants. “In the coming general elections — in the whole country but especially in Balochistan — we will establish a PPP government and elect a jiyala chief minister and find solutions to Balochistan’s problems.”

With Zehri and Baloch part of the PPP, Bilawal said it would now reach every district and area of Balochistan and if the locals supported it then “no power in the world can block our path.”

He mentioned the names of other personalities who also joined the PPP — former provincial minister Nawab Mohammad Khan Shahwani (National Party) and former minister retired Col Younis Changizi (PML-Q) — and thanked them for doing so, saying they would become “our power”.

Addressing the new members, Bilawal said the PPP wasn’t merely a political party but “a family, and we do politics for respect and will give respect to one another and the people of Balochistan. We will do politics together with each other in the coming days.”

Zehri and Baloch had quit the PML-N in November 2020 along with their supporters after they were not invited to attend a public meeting organised by the opposition alliance Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) on December 25.

They had also strongly reacted to PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif’s speech against the army chief and head of the Inter-Services Intelligence during a PDM rally in Gujranwala.

“We have consulted our people and like-minded political and tribal friends and with their consent decided to join the PPP on the invitation of the party leadership,” Baloch had said in a meeting held on June 15.

Zehri, speaking through video link, had said: “We do not take decisions in closed drawing rooms. We take decisions after consulting our people and link-minded friends.”