Haider Khan elected new 'PM' of PoK



Islamabad: Raja Farooq Haider Khan of the Muslim Conference was on Thursday elected as 'prime minister' of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir by its Legislative Assembly after his predecessor Sardar Yaqoob Khan resigned to avoid a possible no-confidence motion.

Haider Khan defeated his only rival, outgoing 'prime minister' Yaqoob Khan who was fielded by a four-party alliance that includes Pakistan's ruling PPP.

He bagged 29 votes, ten more than Yaqoob Khan, in the 49-member Legislative Assembly.

Pakistan Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani congratulated Haidar Khan after he took oath of office this afternoon.

The Assembly met at 10 am local time in PoK capital Muzaffarabad to elect the new Leader of the House with Speaker Shah Ghulam Qadir in the chair.

Yaqoob Khan, who was in the post for only nine months, said he accepted the verdict of the House.

Strict security arrangements were made in Muzaffarabad ahead of the voting.

PoK has witnessed considerable instability over the past year, with local political parties accusing the PPP of indulging in horse-trading to come to power in the region.

Parties kept assembly members at undisclosed locations to prevent them from switching allegiance ahead of the voting.

Yaqoob Khan resigned from the post last week after the opposition threatened to move a no-confidence motion against him.

Bureau Report