Pro-Maryam Nawaz leaders boycott the event
A scuffle broke out at the workers’ convention of the Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PMLN) in Bahawalpur on Sunday just before Hamza Shehbaz Sharif was to address the gathering, SAMAA TV reported.
PMLN workers used batons, punches, and kicks against each other, it said.
Pro-Maryam Nawaz workers and local leaders are not attending the convention, the TV says. Those who boycotted the event included Mayor Bahawalpur and other local leaders.
Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf leader and Punjab Information Minister Fayyaz ul Hassan Chohan says the in-fight underscored the rift in the PMLN.
He said Maryam Nawaz does not see her uncle Shehbaz Sharif as the party leader and instead believes that only her father, Nawaz Sharif, was the party head.
“Shehbaz Sharif now wants to become prime minister,” Chohan said.
“When the [general] elections draw nearer, these people would fight among themselves,” he said.
The scuffle was largely contained to the outer edges of the convention and the audience near the stage remained calm.
Addressing the convention, Shehbaz Sharif said the entire nation was waiting for Nawaz Sharif and Shehbaz Sharif [to return to power].
He said PMLN workers had unyielding courage and resilience and they had bravely faced jails to support their leaders.
Hamza Shehbaz criticised the PTI government saying it had left tens of thousands of people jobless and demolished homes instead of delivering on its promise to provide 5 million housing units.
“People now say they want the old Pakistan back,” he said.