Islamabad – Staff Reporter:
PML-N Senator Mushahidullah Khan passed away in Islamabad early Thursday morning at the age of 68.
The cause of death was not immediately clear. Mushahidullah had been awarded a ticket by the PML-N to contest the upcoming Senate elections on a general seat.
Zubair, who is also the spokesperson for PML-N Vice-President Maryam Nawaz, added that the late senator was a federal minister under the previous government and was ranked among the senior-most leaders of the party.
Maryam Nawaz said she was “shattered to hear the sad news” of Senator Mushahidullah’s demise.
“Senator Mushahidullah Khan, MNS’s loyal and exceptional companion left us. Will never be able to forget his fatherly affection & love. Huge huge loss.
An outspoken and aggressive PML-N loyalist, Mushahidullah was not a man known to mince words. He had no qualms about hitting his opponents below the belt and it seemed that this unflinching, aggressive loyalty is what endeared him to the Sharif brothers all these years.
Following the Oct 1999 coup staged by retired General Pervez Musharraf, when most of the Sharifs’ comrades-in-arms jumped ship and joined the king’s party, Mushahidullah chose to take on the military strongman head on.
Within 24 hours of General Musharraf taking over, on Oct 13, Mushahidullah convened a press conference where he was less than flattering about the newly-imposed military regime and summarily resigned from the two lucrative positions he held at the time; as administrator of the Karachi Metropolitan Corporation and as adviser to the Ministry of Labour and Manpower.
For his troubles, he was imprisoned and, by his own admission, had to endure several “atrocities” perpetrated by the military regime of the time.
Even though well-respected in party circles, his temper and lack of a filter when it came to making public statements often landed him in hot water. From quarrelling with fellow guests on TV talk shows to provoking opposition parliamentarians on the floor of the house, his fellow party leaders said that he seldom played nice.
Mushahidullah was a trusted aide of Nawaz ever since the latter was forced into exile. First appointed party information secretary and later made a senator in 2009, he also served as the party spokesperson for many years.