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Friday Aug 06 2021

‘Stand by Tareen’: Awn Chaudhry tenders resignation as special coordinator to CM Punjab

PTI leader Awn Chaudhry. File photo
PTI leader Awn Chaudhry. File photo

  • Awn Chaudhry says he "prefers to resign" than disassociating from the Jahangir Tareen group.
  • He was asked to stop lobbying for Jahangir Tareen in a meeting with CM Usman Buzdar.
  • "My conscience does not allow me to abandon my association with the most loyal member of PTI who served selflessly as I have," states Chaudhry's resignation letter.

LAHORE: Special Coordinator to Chief Minister Punjab on Political Affairs Awn Chaudhry has tendered his resignation after he was asked to disassociate himself from the Jahangir Tareen group or step down from the post.

According to a Geo News report, Chaudhry was told to stop lobbying for the PTI faction, which he refused, instead turning in a prepared resignation letter which he had brought with him.

Awn Chaudhrys resignation letter.
Awn Chaudhry's resignation letter.

Chaudhry shared the letter with the media during prayer break and said he knew why he was called to meet Chief Minister Punjab Usman Buzdar.  

In the letter, the PTI leader expressed anger over the treatment meted out him by the party whom he said he had served selflessly.

“I served PTI, wholeheartedly, completely ignoring my personal life and family for a cause. Sadly I was 'rewarded' by being removed right before the oath-taking ceremony of the Prime Minister which I accepted with grace,” he stated.

“I was then made Advisor to the CM without any portfolio in Punjab and again I was removed unceremoniously and I even accepted that.”

Chaudhry was referring here to his appointment in September 2018 as an advisor to Buzdar — with no portfolio assigned in specific — and subsequent removal in September 2019 from the post.

In a strong show of support for the former PTI secretary general, Awn Chaudhry said he was asked to distance himself from Jahangir Tareen but he prefers to submit his resignation instead.

“Everyone knows that Jahangir Khan Tareen is the person who played a pivotal role in the struggle of PTI and keeping in view his efforts for the success of PTI in 2018 Elections and formation of PTI Govt in the Centre and Punjab, my conscience does not allow me to abandon my association with the most loyal member of PTI who served selflessly as I have.”

He added: “I prefer to submit my resignation from the post of Special Coordinator to the CM, to stand by Mr Tareen and his Group. I have always put my trust in Allah and He has always guided me and will continue to guide me in future Insha Allah.”

'We, too, are ready to resign'

Later, Raja Riaz, another well-known, devout loyalist of Tareen, spoke to Geo News, saying "we, too, are ready to hand in our resignations if sought", without naming anyone.

Riaz swore not to leave Tareen's side, adding that a "joint decision" by the group will soon be taken.

He said moves such as "pressuring members" to hand in their resignations will end up harming the party.

Challenge to Riaz to resign and try getting votes on his own

Meanwhile, Punjab Minister for Prisons Fayyazul Hasan Chohan said that Riaz can hand in his resignation if he wishes and then contest the elections from Faisalabad independently.

"Awn Chaudhry and Raja Riaz should be ashamed of themselves for their anti-PTI rhetoric," he said.

Chohan said that it would have been more appropriate of Chaudhry to have instead been grateful to Imran Khan.

The minister said that it was due to their association with PTI that Awn Chaudhry and other Tareen loyalists had even received votes during polls.

"Raja Riaz cannot resign now and then be re-elected based on his own reputation," Chohan said, challenging Riaz to try.

"There is only one group in PTI. And that is the Imran Khan group," he said.