LAHORE: Punjab Chief Minister and PML-N president Shahbaz Sharif has said his party is committed to the cause of reviving the Bahawalpur province and creating South Punjab province.

Talking to office-bearers of the Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists here on Sunday, he said the PML-N took a practical step on the issue of new provinces by tabling resolutions on the subject. He said the party is still committed to the cause.

He was responding to a query regarding the Janoobi Punjab Suba Mahaz.

The CM talked at length about the development schemes initiated in south Punjab to bring the region on a par with the northern parts of the province. He said his government increased development budget for south Punjab to 42 per cent which, he added, was higher in terms of population of the area.

He told a questioner that transparent elections were not possible without providing a level playing field to all political parties and stressed that only fair polls could move the country on the path to progress.

He criticised the PTI leadership, saying [Imran] Khan Sahib fabricated lies like the stories told in Qissa Khawani Bazaar (of Peshawer).

About the questions being raised by the apex court on 56 Punjab companies, he said his government averted a Rs70 billion fraud in clean drinking water project and sent the case to the Anti-Corruption Establishment, while the NAB (National Accountability Bureau) was nowhere to be seen at that time.

He claimed that services of the PML-N government would be written in the history in golden words.

Answering a question, the CM said Nawaz Sharif “was, is and will be” the party’s supreme leader and denied there’re any differences in the PML-N on certain issues.

“Difference of opinion may exist in a democratic party and it is a positive thing and it improves affairs,” he, however, added.

Published in Dawn, April 16th, 2018

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