KARACHI: Karachi could become a global metropolis if it had a committed and honest leadership, said Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf chairman Imran Khan on Monday at a reception hosted by the Karachi Tajir Ittehad at Khaliqdina Hall, as he detailed the achievements of the PTI-led government in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
The PTI chief was joined by several prominent members of his party, including Asad Umar, Imran Ismail, Arif Alvi, Ali Zaidi, Liaquat Jatoi, Firdous Shamim, Khurram Sherzaman and Dawa Khan.
Mr Khan said that KP was on the road to progress because it had introduced basic reforms to improve governance in the province. He said there was a need for real change in the country, which could only be possible if the citizens took the initiative to change themselves.
Karachi needed a functional local government and it was the only way to address people’s problems, he stressed.
“Today, the mayor of Karachi demands powers for the local bodies, which the elected representatives of KP already have,” he said, adding that 30 per cent of the province’s development budget was being spent through local government bodies. Constructing roads and infrastructure development were the responsibilities of the local government, he said.
Says progress in KP is due to PTI govt’s reforms
A country which did not guarantee security of life and property could not progress, he stressed. Even Sindh Inspector General of Police A.D. Khowaja wanted to initiate the police reforms introduced earlier in the KP police, he said, adding that the KP police were no longer misused for political purposes. If the police were used to break the law and exercise undue influence, the cops, too, would use their powers unfairly, he said.
The PTI chief claimed that there had been record investment in KP since his party formed a government there. He said the value of Bank of Khyber shares had gone up from Rs5 to Rs16 in three years. He said the country could not rely on loans to run its affairs.
On the issue of unemployment among the youth, Mr Khan said it was unfortunate that the country’s youth was running from pillar to post, degrees in hand, looking for jobs.
He said traders were hounded by the Federal Board of Revenue, adding that unless the FBR was transformed into a proper institution, problems faced by the business community could not be addressed. “If the PTI got the opportunity [to come to power], we would reduce taxes and increase revenue,” he said.
Mumtaz Bhutto invited to join PTI
The PTI chief met Sindh National Front chairman Mumtaz Ali Bhutto at his residence to condole the death of his elder brother Haji Mashooq Ali Bhutto. The two leaders also discussed the political situation prevailing in the country with specific reference to the situation in Sindh.
On the occasion, Mr Khan extended a formal invitation to the SNF chief to join the PTI.
According to sources, they agreed to launch joint struggle against corruption.
Mr Bhutto, according to the sources, said that if the PTI was willing to include the SNF programme and provincial autonomy in its manifesto, he would discuss Mr Khan’s offer with his colleagues.
PTI leader Shah Mehmood Qureshi also offered his condolences to Mumtaz Bhutto on the death of his brother.
Speaking at a function organised by the All Pakistan Memon Federation here at the Memon House, Mr Khan accused the PML-N government of destroying the country’s institutions.
He said wrong politics of rulers had ‘devastated’ Karachi. But now Karachiites had an opportunity to join a party which was not a family affair, he said, adding that the PTI was struggling for the establishment of the rule of law, social justice and fair play to make Pakistan a welfare state.
He appreciated the support of the Memon community in the construction of Shaukat Khanum Hospital. He asked the Memon community to support his party in its struggle against mafias which had destroyed country’s institutions.
Dawood Chowrangi labour convention
Addressing a labour convention at Dawood Chowrangi, Mr Khan said the PTI had always stood with by workers in their every hour of trial because his party believed that until workers and farmers were not taken care of a society could not progress. He termed the policies of the present government anti-labour and said they were making the poor, poorer and the rich, richer.
He said that after coming to power, the PTI would bring about improvement in every institution. He said privatisation of any institution was not a correct decision.
The PTI chief greeted the Insaf Labour Union on winning the referendum in Steel Mills and said that in the coming days the union would get its due stature.
Published in Dawn, May 2nd, 2017