PPP to launch protest campaign against price hike, federal budget, NAB: Ghani

Updated June 18, 2019

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The minister says the NAB had become an “instrument” for the government. — Dawn/File
The minister says the NAB had become an “instrument” for the government. — Dawn/File

KARACHI: Pakistan Peoples Party Karachi division president and Local Government Minister Saeed Ghani announced on Monday that the PPP would hold protest rallies in all parts of Karachi and at district level daily.

The issues to be highlighted at these rallies would include price hike, particularly the unprecedented increase in prices of petroleum and diesel, the “anti-people” federal budget, and against the NAB action in Sindh. On June 23 it would take out a procession from Peoples Chowrangi to the Karachi Press Club. He also declared that a protest meeting would be organised in Karachi in July which would be addressed by PPP chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari and other party leaders.

The minister, who was speaking at a press conference in the Assembly Building here on Monday, said that the National Accountability Bureau had become an “instrument” of the government and it was politically victimising leaders of the opposition parties at the behest of the government.

In reply to a question, he said that all parties in the opposition would launch a people’s coordination campaign soon which would create a situation that Imran Khan and his coterie would have to run away from the country.

The minister, who was accompanied by Karachi division general secretary Javed Nagori, Sardar Khan, Murtaza Baloch, Liaquat Magsi, Khalil Hoat and others, said that at the moment the price hike had made the life of the common man miserable. He said prices of medicines, petrol, diesel, electricity and gas had broken the back of the people and the recent federal budget had deprived the people of their right to live as prices of the daily use items had gone beyond their reach.

Terming the present federal budget anti-people, he said that they would not allow its passage from parliament. Mr Ghani said that on directives of the PPP leadership they had already started a protest against the price spiral and “state-sponsored economic terrorism”.

He said the PPP Karachi division had constituted a committee, which had decided to take out from 44 city areas and six districts daily protest rallies for 50 days. Next month, he said, a public meeting would be organised in the metropolis which would be addressed by PPP chief Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari and other party leaders.

In reply to a question the minister said that the opposition parties in the country were yet to decide a date for launching a mass contact campaign jointly. However, as for the PPP, the PPP chairman had announced a few months back that he would launch his party’s campaign against price hike and “economic murder” after Ramazan.

Water crisis

Regarding the water crisis in Karachi, the minister said that there was a difference in supply of water and its demand. He said: “Our efforts are to ensure water supply under a system, but for the last 20 to 25 days the ‘B’ team of the Tehreek-i-Insaf, the MQM-P, which was present in the water board and other city institutions, was creating hurdles in supply of water through valve tampering under a conspiracy to bring the people on the roads”.

He also said that during the last three days due to a power breakdown the 72-inch diameter water pipeline burst twice which was also one of the causes of the water crisis in the city.

In reply to another question, Mr Ghani said: “We will not backtrack from the struggle for the supremacy of the Constitution, democracy, 18th Amendment, and human rights.”

Published in Dawn, June 18th, 2019