NO QUES­TION OF DEAL WITH NAWAZ, ZAR­DARI

Min­is­ter says gov­ern­ment un­der pres­sure to reach deals, but will not do so

The Gulf Today - - FRONT PAGE - BY TARIQ BUTT

IS­LAM­ABAD: Min­is­ter for In­for­ma­tion and Broad­cast­ing Fawad Chaudhry has said that the fed­eral gov­ern­ment is un­der im­mense pres­sure to strike deals with jailed thrice elected for­mer Prime Min­is­ter Nawaz Sharif and Pak­istan Peo­ple’s Party (PPP) supremo Asif Ali Zar­dari but it would not sur­ren­der.

He did not elab­o­rate from where such pres­sure is be­ing ex­erted.

He said that the plun­der­ers of na­tional wealth would be pun­ished as the gov­ern­ment would con­tinue the process of ac­count­abil­ity with­out mak­ing any com­pro­mise.

“If the is­sue of ac­count­abil­ity is to be com­pro­mised, why did Im­ran Khan be­come prime min­is­ter?”

The min­is­ter said Khan was fully com­mit­ted to the ac­count­abil­ity of the cor­rupt and would not spare any­one for his cor­rupt prac­tices. He said that as per its elec­tion man­i­festo, the Pak­istan Tehrik-e-in­saf (PTI) was run­ning a clean and trans­par­ent gov­ern­ment as not a sin­gle case of cor­rup­tion had been re­ported since it came into power.

Chaudhry said the mea­sures taken by the PTI gov­ern­ment since day one to make the coun­try self-su­fi­cient eco­nom­i­cally, had started yield­ing re­sults as the ex­ports had reg­is­tered 4.68 per­cent in­crease and im­ports re­duced by 8.88 per­cent dur­ing De­cem­ber 2018. He said the ini­tial work­ing to con­struct 5 mil­lion houses had al­ready started, while thou­sands of kanals of state land had been re­trieved from the grab­bers.

The gov­ern­ment would cre­ate over 50 mil­lion jobs in next ive years, the min­is­ter said adding that it would en­sure pro­tec­tion of the rights of the down­trod­den peo­ple, be­sides nar­row­ing the gap be­tween the rich and the poor. He ap­pealed to the over­seas Pak­ista­nis to send re­mit­tances through bank­ing chan­nels.

The year 2018 was the year of ‘achiev­ing po­lit­i­cal vic­tory’ for the coun­try while it would gain eco­nomic suc­cess in the year 2019, he added.

The min­is­ter said that ‘un­be­liev­able changes’ had oc­curred in the coun­try un­der the lead­er­ship of Khan. The PTI led by Khan had de­feated var­i­ous ma­ias in the last gen­eral elec­tions.

Re­cently, the cab­i­net had de­cided to place names of 172 sus­pects of the fake bank ac­counts and money laun­der­ing case, in­clud­ing top PPP lead­ers and Bahria Town owner Ma­lik Riaz, on the Exit Con­trol List (ECL).

Fawad Chaudhry

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