LAHORE - The PPP leadership has decided to shift the centre of political activities from Karachi to Lahore in a bid to galvanise the party in Punjab.

“Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and former president Asif Ali Zardari would be in Lahore after a week or so and stay here for longer this time,” Bilawal’s advisor Fawad Ch told The Nation.

Confirming PPP leadership’s decision about making Lahore the centre of political activities, Fawad said that Bilawal’s upcoming Punjab visit would boost the morale of party workers who want to see the party chairman among them. He said no precise date of PPP leaders’ arrival in the city has been finalised as yet.  But it is mostly likely after a week or so,” he said.

Meanwhile, PPP’s Punjab and Lahore leadership is busy preparing lists of partymen who would be afforded an opportunity to meet the party leaders at Lahore. Party’s Lahore President, Samina Khalid Ghurki chaired a meeting the other day to deliberate on the names of party officebearers in this regard. As per sources, it was decided that partymen from Lahore would be allowed to meet Bilawal in groups of 25 from all City zones. There is also a proposal that diehard party workers should also be included in the list along with the officebearers. The idea is to bring back the estranged workers into the party fold.

Party’s central Punjab President, Mian Manzoor Wattoo is arriving here on Monday (today) to chalk out plan for PPP leaders’ upcoming visit to Lahore. He would have consultation with party’s divisional and district presidents to finalise the schedule of leaders’ engagements here.

During his stay in Punjab, Bilawal is also likely to approve a proposal about party’s reorganisation in the province. Some partymen have reportedly floated the idea of forming a vigilance committee at the provincial level with the mandate to reorganise the party cadres and to oversee their performance for two years.

“Since it would be a difficult political decision to replace the current Punjab leaders with the new faces, it would be an easy decision for the leadership to put in place an interim set-up that would appease everybody”, commented a party source over the suggestion.

PPP REJECTS GALLOP SURVEY: Surveys projecting the comparative popularity of political parties and their leaders should not only be credible but also seem to be credible. “But the current Gallop Survey lacks this basic requirement,” said Mian Manzoor Ahmed Wattoo here on Sunday in a statement issued from the PPP Secretariat.

He observed that the current survey was devoid of this basic pre-requisite of the criteria in the face of the 12 to 18 hours loadshedding of electricity, price hike that was squeezing the people dry, vertical surge in heinous crimes like gang rape, self-immolation, poor toddler’s indictment, kidnapping for ransom to name the few instances that exploded on the face of composer of the Survey. Billions of rupees were spent on the Youth Festival which was an exercise in futility, he opined.

Wattoo said that the Gallop survey also impliedly disputed the governance in the province of KPK where the people’s approval rating was more than 57 per cent, looked credible in view of the steps taken by the government to provide good governance to the people.

Moreover, he said, the exercise of survey was very tricky because it was easy to manipulate the desired results through the framing of the questions, type of people to put the questions across and incorporating the opinions of those which were closer to the results to be tabulated. The Survey seems to have used these tactics to obtain the pre-determined conclusions to favour a party at the cost of others.

He said that the party would study its contents threadbare and would come up with resolute response based on facts and figures highlighting its contradictions in a bid to put the whole scenario in a correct perspective.

Mian Manzoor Wattoo maintained that the sponsored assessment was not going to help the government led by PML-N and suggested that it should focus its attention in solving the problems of the people who were seriously raising the questions regarding its ability to address the challenges facing the country.

He opined that the people were not better off than the times of the PPP government when goods for use of common man were available at affordable prices. They are finding it difficult to maintain the linkage between the soul and body due to the spiral in prices of food items, he observed.

He said there was no domestic loadshedding of gas during PPP watch but now the domestic consumers were subject to gas loadshedding as well and the children had to go to school without having breakfast.