Chaudhry Anwar-ul-Haq becomes PM of Azad Kashmir

Chaudhry Anwar-ul-Haq becomes PM of Azad Kashmir

Chaudhry Anwar-ul-Haq has been unanimously elected as the 15th Prime Minister of Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) in a sudden and unexpected turn of events on Thursday.

Chaudhry obtained 48 votes out of a 52-strong house – the biggest mandate in the history of scenic valley’s legislative assembly. 

The development took place after the disqualification of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s (PTI) Sardar Tanveer Ilyas by the AJK High Court in a contempt case.

Earlier this week, on Monday, an assembly session held to elect a new prime minister was adjourned without any polling taking place. The Secretary of the Azad Kashmir assembly confirmed that no nomination papers were submitted for any other candidate of the premiership.

The emergency meeting of the AJK legislative assembly was held after midnight when Speaker Anwar-ul-Haq was elected to the position of Prime Minister.

The nomination papers were given 15 minutes to be submitted, and the vote took place after Haq was elected unopposed. Anwar-ul-Haq received 12 votes each from the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) and forward bloc and seven votes from the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N).

In his inaugural address to the assembly following his election, he said that he contested the election as an independent candidate, emphasising that he garnered the support of both the PDM and PTI members.