PPP co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari claims that the PPP government had initiated the CPEC project.
PPP co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari claims that the PPP government had initiated the CPEC project.

UMERKOT: Pakistan Peoples Party co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari has accused ousted prime minister Nawaz Sharif and Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf chief Imran Khan of pushing the country into external and internal crises.

Addressing a public gathering after attending the wedding ceremony of Syed Ameer Ali Shah, son of MPA Syed Ali Mardan Shah, at Kharoro Syed and later a reception hosted by MNA Nawab Yusuf Talpur at Manjhakr, near Kunri, on Sunday, the former president said the PPP would steer the country out of economic crisis after coming to power.

He was accompanied, among others, by Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly Khursheed Ahmed Shah, Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah, Sindh PPP president Nisar Khuhro and Home Minister Sohail Anwar Siyal.

Mr Zardari claimed that the PPP government had initiated the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor project, but now the ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz was taking credit for it.

He said the country was facing problems because of wrong policies of the Sharif family, adding that only the PPP leadership was capable of solving them and bringing about progress and prosperity.

He stressed the need for preserving water because the country was going to face a crisis. He called for switching over to drip irrigation in irrigated areas and introducing rainwater harvesting in Thar.

Mr Zardari claimed that the PPP would form the next government because the Sharifs were “no more sharifs” and Jaali (fake) Khan — a reference to the PTI chief — only had “hollow claims” and were befooling the nation in the name of “new Pakistan”.

“They don’t know what the country needs and how to make it strong, stable, rich, developed and peaceful. All this is possible if my party comes to power,” the PPP leader said.

He said the PPP-led government in Sindh had built 14 dams in Tharparkar and more were being planned. He recalled that the last PPP government at the centre had faced shortages of wheat and sugar, but it had overcome them and ensured sufficient stocks of both commodities. He announced that he would soon hold a “huge public gathering” in Umerkot.

Earlier, Mr Zardari met chairmen, vice chairmen and members of the local government who apprised him of their problems. The PPP co-chairman assured them that he would try to address their complaints.

Yusuf Talpur claimed that he had ensured provision of irrigation water to tail-end growers in the district. He said the road infrastructure destroyed during 2010-11 floods needed special attention. “If the government is unable to widen it, proper maintenance and repair work be ordered under a special package,” he suggested.

Published in Dawn, December 11th, 2017

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