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KARACHI: Launching the second phase of its “Go Nawaz Go” movement, the Pakistan Peoples Party on Wednesday asked Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to quit his office to save democracy.

The party staged a protest sit-in in front of the Quaid’s mausoleum in which workers and supporters from Karachi’s six districts participated.

Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah and senior PPP leaders, including Sherry Rehman, were also present.

The protesters were waving party flags and carrying placards — inscribed with demands to stop gas and electricity load-shedding, release water to the Indus — and portraits of former prime ministers Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, his daughter Benazir, PPP chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari and his father Asif Zardari.

They shouted slogans against the government and the prime minister, asking him to tender his resignation in the wake of the Supreme Court’s verdict in the Panama Papers case

The federal government has been asked to stop ‘neglecting’ Sindh

Speaking on the occasion, the speakers announced that the “Go Nawaz Go” movement would not be restricted to Sindh only but soon it would spread to the entire country because the PM had brought a ‘bad name’ to Pakistan.

PPP Sindh president Nisar Khuhro held the PM responsible for water, electricity, gas and other problems in Sindh and said: “We are here to lodge complaint with Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah that your country is now ruled by thieves.”

He said that the PPP was not afraid of any dictator. “We would continue to march forward and would not rest until Bilawal Bhutto becomes prime minister.”

CM Shah, who started his speech with the Jeay Bhutto slogan, said the PPP workers and supporters were protesting under the scorching sun because Sindh was receiving step-motherly treatment from the federal government.

He said that besides up to 20 hours of power load-shedding, water and gas was also not being supplied to the people of Sindh.

He said that the federal government had lost the confidence of the people and now judges had also declared the PM untruthful.

Mr Shah said that when he raised the “Go Nawaz Go” slogan on Oct 16, 2016 he faced criticism but now everyone was raising the same slogan as Nawaz Sharif was no more eligible to become a member of the National Assembly.

He said if democracy was to be saved Nawaz Sharif would have to resign.

He said the sit-ins, which are being staged on the directives of Mr Zardari, were a message to the world that excesses had been committed with Sindh and until Nawaz Sharif resigned the problems being confronted by the country would not be solved.

He said that the day was not far when Nawaz Sharif would resign.

Senator Sherry Rehman said that some elements were trying to paralyse national institutions as they did not consider the institutions of any worth before them.

She said that today the name of Nawaz Sharif had become “Na-ahl Sharif”.

She claimed the government had spent Rs12 billion only on the projection of the prime minister.

About load-shedding, she said: “Don’t push the country into darkness, people are asking for electricity.”

Senator Aajiz Dhamra said the message from Karachi was being sent across the country that it was the PPP alone which had served the people.

He criticised the prime minister for terming the people of Sindh “dacoits” during his recent visit to the province. “Nawaz Sharif, Saad Rafique and Abid Sher Ali are the biggest thieves,” he said.

The sit-in, which turned into a public meeting, was conducted by Senator Saeed Ghani, the secretary general of the PPP’s Karachi division.

Published in Dawn, April 27th, 2017