| Bilawal Bhutto Zardari demands fresh elections in country | Says PPP can deal with economic crisis | Urges ECP to take action against PTI for hiding its foreign funding for 7 years | People want to know how PM Imran became rich overnight | We will oppose mini-budget within, outside Parliament.
If establishment has said that it is neutral, then we welcome it, says Bilawal
Those who engage in ‘politics of deals’ don’t have graveyards of martyrs
LAHORE – Pakistan Peoples’ Party chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari Thursday announced that he would lead a long from Karachi to Islamabad on February 27, urging ‘every democratic force to come out against this incapable government.’
“We demand fresh, fair and transparent elections in the country because the solution of the problems of the people is in democracy, democracy and more democracy. We demand of the ECP to take action against PTI, which hid its foreign funding for seven long years. We have formed a legal team to look into it and challenge it,” the PPP leader stated this while addressing a press conference after chairing a meeting of the party’s Central Executive Committee here in Lahore. “Starting from the Mausoleum of Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah, we will reach Islamabad in any case,” the PPP chairman said.
Bilawal hoped that no institution would create any hurdle in the way of the party’s struggle against the government.
“Our stand on the establishment and other institutions is that every institution should work within its constitutional domain. We hope that this will happen. We are in Lahore because the people of Lahore and Punjab have always supported the PPP, be it was Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto or Shaheed Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto.”
“The people in this city had welcomed Shaheed Benazir Bhutto in 1986 in great numbers and with enthusiasm which is a record to this day. The people of Lahore and Punjab are once again looking at the PPP. We increased our votes by six folds in the recent bye-elections. I request the people of Punjab to support me as I will not disappoint them. We only look towards the people for support and no one else.”
The PPP chairman cited the rising inflation, poverty, unemployment, bad law and order situation, extremism, terrorism and attacks on the democratic rights of the people as the reasons behind the planned long march against the government. To a question, he said that PDM had every right to plan its long march the way it wanted to. He said PDM parties did not consult the PPP before announcing their long march.
“We had a very good strategy. We convinced our friends to take part in bye-elections, then the election for a Senate seat in the National Assembly. We defeated Imran Khan in all elections.” He said that he desires for every democratic force to come out against this incapable government. He said that those who engage in the ‘politics of deals’ do not have graveyards of martyrs. Replying to another question, he said that the party’s manifesto committee is working on the manifesto for the next elections. The basis of our manifesto is always “Roti, Kapra aur Makan”. Chairman Bilawal said that the entire PPP will be present on the day of voting on mini-budget and hopes that the entire opposition will also be there. He said that some TV channels were not reporting the amount he paid as agriculture tax. The PPP Media Office released the figures of the total taxes he paid for the last five years.
He said that Imran Khan used to call everyone a thief but he was exposed as the biggest thief himself. Imran Khan is the only person in the whole of Pakistan who got 5800 percent richer whereas the entire nation has become poorer. The people of Pakistan want to know how he became rich overnight.
Asked to comment on the recent statement by DG ISPR about non-involvement of the establishment in political affairs, he said history was testimony to the fact that the establishment had been meddling in political matters. It is also evident from imposing a selected PM on the country, he added. Bilawal, however, welcomed the statement by DG ISPR saying that the PPP had always wanted the institutions to be impartial. “If the establishment has said that it is neutral, then we welcome it”. He hoped no institution would interfere in the PPP’s struggle against the incumbent government. He said that those who engage in the ‘politics of deals’ do not have graveyards of martyrs.
Briefing the media persons about the decisions of the PPP’ Central Executive Committee, Bilawal demanded vacation of the Supreme Court’s stay order given against fixation of minimum wage of Rs25,000 by the Sindh government. He said that being the custodian of human rights, the SC should take back its decision. He also announced to challenge the court decision which he said had been given in favor of the business community.
He said the PPP will also challenge [in court] the illegal extension given by the Parliament to the expired ordinances. He said there was no provision in the law and the constitution for such an extension. “When an ordinance is promulgated, it has to be extended by the parliament before it expires. An expired ordinance cannot be given extension by the parliament. Unfortunately, the Speaker of the National Assembly was also involved in this illegal act; but he was in fact misguided”, he maintained.
He said the CEC had also lauded the efforts of the PPP legal team to get the 16,000 sacked employees of the federal government restored by the Supreme Court of Pakistan. The CEC, he said, condemned the Indian atrocities on the innocent Kashmiris in the Indian held Kashmir and demanded implementation of the UN resolution supporting the right to self-determination of the Kashmiris.
He further stated that PPP would soon submit a report to the Election Commission containing proof of rigging in the 2018 elections. The PPP chairman also announced to hold Kissan rallies at divisional level to agitate the issue of shortage of fertilizer in the country.
He said that the CEC urged the Supreme Court to revisit the judicial murder of Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto. “The entire Pakistan is waiting for the Supreme Court’s decision in this regard”, he said.
He said the CEC condemned the government for its failure in resolving the people’s problems. “The government created crises relating to that of agriculture, gas, power, poverty, unemployment, extremism and terrorism”. The CEC also expressed its concerns over the state’s surrender before militants, the situation in Afghanistan and the secret deal on Reko Diq. He said that Shaheed Benazir Bhutto had struggled for the merger of tribal areas and the cause was also a part of her last manifesto.
Unfortunately, the merger was not fully implemented and the promises made to the people of the tribal areas were not fulfilled. “There are conspiracies being hatched to reverse the merger, which we will strongly resist”.