PML-N names Mohsin Naqvi, Ahad Cheema for coveted caretaker Punjab CM slot
PML-N names Mohsin Naqvi, Ahad Cheema for caretaker Punjab CM slot
LAHORE (Dunya News) – Leader of Opposition in Punjab Assembly Hamza Shehbaz has forwarded the names of Ahad Khan Cheema and Syed Mohsin Naqvi for caretaker chief minister of the province to Governor Balighur Rehman.
The names have been decided after the PML-N leaders held consultation with various parties. The two candidates are considered trusted lieutenants of the party.
Here are the profiles of the two candidates.
Mohsin Naqvi was raised by his maternal uncle after losing his parents at a young age. His uncle also serves as the chairman of a media group. He had a traditional upbringing, attended Crescent Model School and later the Government College in Lahore. He showed early signs of leadership and had a talent for networking, even building a relationship with the chief minister while still an undergraduate student. He later pursued higher education in the United States.
While based in Miami, Mr Naqvi gained experience in journalism through an internship at CNN. This experience may have inspired his idea for local media networks in Pakistan. When no journalist was willing to return to Pakistan, he, as a CNN intern, volunteered to return home and leverage the CNN name and his strong networking abilities to establish himself in the news media industry.
While working at CNN, Mohsin Naqvi held the position of a producer and was utilised as a local resource for the foreign journalists. As CNN s representative in Pakistan, he fulfilled various roles and would arrange interviews and meetings with important figures such as the chief minister.
As a field producer for CNN, Mr Naqvi worked diligently behind the scenes, focusing on building connections and managing logistics. He never sought the spotlight, a tendency that he carries over to his current role as a leader of his organisation. Throughout his time with CNN, he actively cultivated relationships with politicians, journalists, and other influential figures in Pakistan, using his affable personality and easy smile to gain favour and rise through the ranks. He was known for being quick to respond to requests for comment and always maintaining a polite and professional demeanour.
Mr Cheema, from an agricultural background of family of Hafizabad, made a name for himself early in his career. In 2005, he was selected by Chief Minister Pervaiz Elahi to manage the "Parha Likha Punjab" project, serving as the project coordinator. This initiative was supported by the World Bank, and its success is attributed to Mr Cheema s hard work and management skills. The previous government was proud of the project s success and it was also held up as a model by donor agencies.
He always took great satisfaction in the accomplishment of this initiative, and donor organisations also promoted it as being worth imitating. He also began to be knows as the "metro man" in bureaucratic circles. He was selected by the chief minister to oversee and manage the Lahore Metro Bus System (MBS) project due to his reputation for effective problem-solving, persuasive approach and leadership. He accepted the challenge and joined as the Director General of the Lahore Development Authority (LDA) in March 2012. He completed the project in a record time of 11 months, without compromising any rules or regulations. The project was completed with transparency and a budget of Rs29.8 billion was utilised.
Cheema had lately been in limelight for his indictment by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) in Aashiana Housing scheme case. He was arrested by the bureau in Feb 2018 and appeared in the investigation. Later, the NAB also initiated inquiries regarding the LDA City scam and assets beyond means against him. Later, in April 2021, he was granted bail in all three cases. It is imperative to mention here that cases have also been lodged against PM Shehbaz Sharif for corruption in the scheme.
However, he did not choose to continue his bureaucratic career over the "maltreatment meted out to him" while he was in the NAB’s custody. He said, he was roped into "politically motivated campaign spearheaded by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) ahead of the 2018 general election and his ordeal all along". Later in June 2022, he was appointed special assistant to PM Shehbaz on establishment.