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December 6, 2017

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PPP wants PML-N to complete term before caretaker govt: Zardari

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan People’s Party Parliamentarians (PPPP) President Asif Ali Zardari on Tuesday said ex-prime minister Nawaz Sharif came to power through a fake mandate in the 2013 general elections but his party wanted to see the PML-N government complete its constitutional term before the formation of the caretaker government.

Addressing a show of power at the Parade Ground here in connection with the golden jubilee celebrations of the PPP’s foundation day, he said the PPP had twice saved former prime minister Nawaz Sharif but it will give him no favor in future.

“We have saved them twice, but now we will not save them again; we will bring democracy in its place,” he said. Zardari lashed out at Nawaz Sharif and PTI Chairman Imran Khan, saying the godfather had emptied the national exchequer and ‘Jaali’ (fake) Khan was not realising how he will give something to the people with an empty national exchequer.

He said dictators had no future but a past. "Nowadays, a dictator is taking refuge in a foreign land after knowing that he has no future in Pakistan. Whatever happens in Pakistan in the coming years will be on the basis of power of vote, as now democracy in is marching on the super highway,” he said.

He said Nawaz had made the country bankrupt. The real price of a dollar was Rs127, but the government hid it from the people, as it wanted the burden to shift to the future caretaker government, he added. He said the PPP government gave an ‘identity’ to Pakhtoons and economic growth was better during its tenure.

Talking about Kashmir, Zardari gave a clear message to India saying, “I want to tell India very clearly: as long as the PPP’s sons breathe, they will never cede Kashmir to you. Kashmir is the jugular vein of Pakistan and there will be no compromise on it,” he said.

Zardari said a nuclear Pakistan won’t let India treat it like it treated Nepal. On Pakistan’s relations with Afghanistan, he said the PPP wanted the Pak-Afghan ties to grow and urged the Afghan nation to trust Pakistan and realise that Pakistanis were also suffering.

“We want their borders strengthened and also ours, as Pakistan is also a victim of terrorism and terrorists are not only enemies of Pakistan but also theirs.” Zardari said on every PPP foundation day, he remembered the late Benazir Bhutto, who would have been proud to see her son Bilawal Bhutto doing politics. “Here I present to you Bilawal and believe that you will be loyal to my children the way you have been to Benazir and me”.

He said after the five-year rule of PPP, the government fulfilled Benazir’s vision. Zardari said Pakistan’s future depended on water and agriculture but it was not understood by the “Lohars and Patwaris”.

Speaking on the occasion, Chairman Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Bilawal Bhutto Zardari said erosion of the state writ in the federal capital in recent days was an alarming situation and his party would ensure the rule of law after coming into power.

Bilawal said the PPP will not accept collusion between politics and religion and vowed that they will continue to raise their flag against dictatorships. ‘It was the PPP which laid the foundations of democracy in Pakistan and revolted against every dictatorship,” he said. He said only democracy could unite the country and keep the federation intact.

Though it was being expected that Bilawal would share his vision with the party workers about his detailed programme to bring back the past glory of the party and his future agenda, he focused his speech on the services of the PPP rendered by Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and Benazir Bhutto. He, however, shared six points with the party leaders and workers to make Pakistan a social democratic country in the light of the basic philosophy on which the party was founded.

Bilawal said the PPP will empower women, youth and minorities and reform the health, education, agriculture and rural development sectors. “We will bring reforms under which the youth will not have to search for jobs but the government will provide a conducive environment in which the youth will get jobs,” he said.

He said the reforms introduced in the tenure of PPP government like the 18th Amendment, Haqooq-e-Balochistan, provincial autonomy, devolution of power will be defended. The PPP chairman said reforms would also be introduced in the judiciary, police and civil service.

Bilawal said the PPP always got into power during extraordinary situations be it 1971, 1988 or 2008. “It was Zulfikar Ali Bhutto who brought the country out of crises, gave the country a consensus constitution, identity cards and passports and made the country a nuclear power, but when General Ziaul Haq got into power, he washed away the people’s expectations,” he said.

After the martyrdom of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, he said, Ziaul Haq assumed it’s all over but ZA Bhutto passed his struggle and legacy on to his daughter, who had a firm belief in the power of people.

He said Islam was a complete religion which gives a message of peace to the followers of all faiths and rejects extremism and terrorism. He said it was the PPP’s third generation that was carrying on the ZAB’s legacy for the sake of democracy.

“I congratulate those who have laid the foundations of the PPP and stood against dictatorship,” said Bilawal. “Under the umbrella of dictatorship, the so-called economic progress led to ethnic divides. The resources were only limited to feudal lords and a particular section of the society,” he continued.

He said Benazir Bhutto had raised her voice against terrorists and always stood against the martial law. “In her 30-year political career, she spent 26 years in the struggle against successive dictators and got two short stints in power during which she not only revoked the martial law regulations, but also empowered women and strengthened the country’s defence by acquiring F-16s and missile technology and starting Ghazi Barotha and Neelum-Jhelum projects,” he said.

He said Benazir Bhutto even resisted former prime minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif’s move to bring a constitutional amendment to become Ameerul Momineen. He said during the tenure of Asif Ali Zardari, the PPP government laid the foundations of CPEC, restored those sacked during the tenures of Nawaz Sharif and General (retd) Pervez Musharraf, introduced 18th Amendment and gave provincial autonomy to the provinces.

“After the martyrdom of Benazir Bhutto, the country’s situation deteriorated but the PPP cooled down the emotions and put the country on the road of democracy. At that time, Asif Ali Zardari raised the slogan of ‘Pakistan Khappey’ while I said democracy is the best revenge,” he said.

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