LAHORE, Sept 3: The Pakistan People’s Party has decided to build up pressure on the PML-N’s Punjab government to hold local government polls before the 2013 general election.

“We will exert pressure on the PML-N inside and outside parliament, forcing it not to run way from its constitutional obligation to hold the local government election in Punjab,” Prime Minister’s Special Assistant Aslam Gill said.

Talking to Dawn on Monday, he said after President Zardari’s direction to the Sindh government to hold local government polls ahead of the general election, the Punjab government should go for it to check its popularity among the masses.

Mr Gill said denying the devolution of power to the grass roots demonstrated that the PML-N leadership did not believe in democracy and it was in favour of delegation of power to the powerful. “On one hand the Sharif brothers talk about empowering the poor and on the other they are practically going against it,” he said.

Mr Gill said Shahbaz Sharif cited law and order situation in the province as a justification for delaying the local-body polls. “But when his (Shahbaz) attention is drawn towards poor law and order in Punjab he is not ready to accept it. The PML-N leaders should shun the politics of double standards.”

He said the PPP mobilised the people in the province to press the Punjab government to immediately announce the local government election schedule. “Even some PML-N leaders are in favour of holding the (local body) election but since Shahbaz Sharif is running the province single-handedly he has imposed dictatorship on his own party,” he said.

Mr Gill said the PPP was confident of winning both local and general elections. “The PML-N also knows this fact that once the energy crisis is overcome it (PML-N) has no chance to come to power even in Punjab again.” — Staff Reporter

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