PPP co-chairperson Asif Ali Zardari on Thursday vowed to fight his political opponents "in court and everywhere else" soon after it emerged that his name could be placed on the exit control list (ECL) in connection with the fake bank accounts case.
Shortly after Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry announced that the federal cabinet has decided to place on the ECL all 172 suspects named in a joint investigation team's report in the fake bank accounts case, Zardari, who is named in the aforesaid JIT report, went on the offensive, saying: "Today, the thugs of the ladla have challenged us. We are not afraid of their tactics.
"As far as Bilawal [Bhutto] is concerned, he is the son of BB and I: how can you scare him?" he asked.
Zardari, who made scarce mention of his late wife in a speech meant to mark Benazir Bhutto's 11th death anniversary in Garhi Khuda Bukhsh, criticised the incumbent PTI government and claimed that it pales in comparison to the PPP.
"They did nothing in their [first] 100 days," he said, reminding the party supporters that he had ousted retired Gen Musharraf and "launched the Benazir [Income Support Programme] card", among other things, in his own first 100 days as president.
"They will be unable to run the country despite foreign support by friendly countries," he said.
PPP chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari, after paying homage to his late mother, echoed his father's sentiments and promised to "fight the lies and controversies" against his family.
Bilawal wondered if Prime Minister Imran Khan is aware "how weak the federation's foundations are right now", warning that "a single spark can turn everything into a heap of ash."
"The country's rein has been handed to an inexperienced PM today," he said. "He has drowned the public in a sea of inflation within his first 100 days. He has brought the economy to a point from where there is no return."
Bilawal accused "the puppet" prime minister of "wanting to turn the country into one unit and establish a one-party unit."
The PPP leader questioned why the opposition is the "sole target" of the ongoing accountability drive in the country.
"Why are federal ministers and the prime minister and his family above the law?" he asked.
Bilawal also labelled the JIT report implicating his father and other leaders of his party as "lies and sham", and claimed that it would not hold in the court where it "would be thrown in the trash can".
He also launched a staunch defence of his father, reminding his party workers that the PPP co-chairperson had been acquitted in all past cases against him.