Chief Minister Punjab Shahbaz Sharif has returned to Lahore after a week-long visit to London.
During his stay in London, Shahbaz called on his ailing sister-in-law Kulsoom Nawaz and met various overseas PML-N supporters.
In an important development during his London stay, during a meeting of the top PML-N leadership, Shahbaz was chosen as as prime ministerial candidate after the 2018 elections if party president Nawaz Sharif remains ineligible to run for office.
The decision “coincided” with a full-page result of a “national opinion survey” published in an Urdu daily in which 60 per cent of respondents declared Shahbaz Sharif as the best choice for the prime ministerial job. According to the survey, conducted by a little known US institute Global Strategic Partner in September, Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf chairman Imran Khan was the choice of 47pc of total 4,540 respondents from across the country.
The visit also came during a time when there have been repeated reports of a rift between the two sides of the Sharif family which have continuously been denied by both sides.