As PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif reintroduces aggressive rhetoric ahead of his return to Pakistan, a ‘narrative committee’ has been established within the party to weigh in on the retaliatory narrative of the former prime minister which, according to an insider’s personal reckoning, had little traction in the general populace.
The PML-N insider expressed personal doubts that this aggressive narrative would prove to be counter-productive for the party and particularly for Nawaz Sharif himself.
Meanwhile, the ‘narrative’ committee constituted by Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz leadership that has held two meetings thus far is weighing in on the narrative.
A well-placed source, privy to the development, on the condition of anonymity said that a ‘narrative committee’, comprising around ten people had been constituted by the leadership to garner public feedback and communicate the public pulse to the leadership regarding the workability of the retaliatory narrative.
He said that this committee will soon be submitting its findings and proposals to the leadership, allowing them to shape their narrative in line with the suggestions.
The committee has held two meetings virtually. Party information secretary Marrium Aurganzeb was the convener/secretary of this meeting.
The party leader claimed that the party was largely against taking any retaliatory approach as this would not only put the party on a collision course with the incumbent military bosses but also raise questions about the Shehbaz Sharif-led government, which was more than friendly to the outgoing military boss which Nawaz has against taken in his cross hairs.
He said that ours was the government, that wanted to hold the late General (retired) Musharaf accountable, but couldn’t and then after aggressively criticising outgoing COAS Qamar Javed Bajwa when came to power sang praises for him. Now again criticising him was a about turn.
The party would lose its face if it proceeded with this narrative, he said and added that to his understanding, the party would either abandon this narrative soon or tone it down.
He said that the establishment would see this narrative as a threat to even the incumbent bosses. However, he said the final decision to decide what narrative to adopt is the sole discretion of Nawaz Sharif.
He said the members of the committee include former federal minister and General Secretary PMLN Ahsan Iqbal, senior PML-N leader Khawaja Saad Rafique, Pervez Rashid, Khurram Dastagir, Azam Nazir Tarar, Malik Muhammad Ahmad Khan, Marrium Aurangezb, Ata Ullah Tarar, Rana Sanaullah and Bilal Kyani.
The PML-N leader, who is part of this committee talking to The Express Tribune confirmed that indeed a committee to this effect has been formed and that he was a part of it.
He revealed that the committee would soon submit its findings to the leadership. He said that the last of the two meetings was held on Friday virtually. He said that the purpose is not only limited to one aspect of the party narrative, he said that we have to make in line with the demands of recent times.
He said that we have to reel in young voters and for them, we need to adopt a different approach. He said that otherwise how to introduce new voters in party supremacy of the constitution and public feedback regarding PML-N was also discussed during the meeting.Several leaders including Ahsan Iqbal, Rana Sanaullah and Marrium Aurangzeb were approached to comment on the development but were not available.