Lahore, May 5 : Despite all the discrepancies with the PPP over the issue of restoration of deposed judges, PML-N leader and former Pakistan premier Nawaz Sharif is learnt to be keen on continuing with the alliance with the PPP for the larger interests of the country, even if he had to take 'a few steps backward'.
"Mian Nawaz Sharif thinks that cooperation between the PML-N and the PPP is very important for the country. He is committed to keeping the alliance intact," the Dawn quoted PML-N sources as saying.
They said the PML-N would do its best to settle the judges' issue so that the Presidency or other political rivals could not get a chance to pit the two major parties of the coalition, viz the PPP and the PML-N against each other.
According to sources, the Presidency was of the view that the alliance would not survive the judges' issue and it wanted the PML-Q to play the role of a 'friendly opposition' so that it was acceptable to the PPP as a partner in the event of the coalition falling apart.
A recent meeting at the Presidency discussed the possible scenarios at the Centre and in Punjab if the PML-N pulled out of the coalition. "The federal government can run comfortably even without the PML-N but there may be some problems in Punjab where the PML-N is the largest party," was the participants' assessment.
Some PML-Q leaders, however, did not agree with the assessment that the PPP and PML-N were about to part ways. "The establishment is painting a rosy picture for the president, which is quite misleading," said a PML-Q leader on Sunday. He further said that the PML-Q should play the role of an effective opposition, giving enough time to the coalition to show its performance.