KARACHI: Interior Minister Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed on Thursday gave the suggestion to the opposition not to pin too many hopes on the foreign funding case and warned the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz that the much-publicised probe could prove to be a “second Panama Leaks” for the PML-N which would lead to unearthing of more “financial scandals of its leaders”.
The interior minister, however, at the same time sounded cordial when he appreciated the Pakistan Democratic Movement for keeping the promise to maintain discipline at the protest outside the Election Commission of Pakistan office and offered the multiparty alliance to stage the ‘long march’ on Islamabad with the same spirit.
While visiting the Nadra Mega Centre on main Korangi Road, Mr Rasheed took the opportunity of brief interaction with the media where he came up with his thoughts, plans of his ministry in Sindh and the message to the opposition parties.
“They [opposition parties] are talking about foreign funding case,” he responded to a question about the possible fate of the case being heard at the ECP.
Appreciates PDM for keeping protest outside ECP under control
“But let me tell you that this would become another Panama [Leaks]. I would suggest that Maryam Nawaz read it thoroughly and then she may realise what it actually is. It is going to unearth your [opposition parties] properties and scandals.”
He predicted the failure of JUI-F chief Maulana Fazlur Rahman, who he said was “used” in the past by the PML-N and the PPP.
“Honestly speaking, I feel sorry for him [maulana],” said Mr Rasheed. “He would lose either way. I advise him to be cautious. Maulana sahib, you would get nothing. They [PML-N and PPP] would abandon you in the middle of the road. I very much respect him as a cleric, but in politics I can only say that he’s going to lose.”
He said the opposition parties had nothing to offer to mobilise the people because everyone was aware of their ‘corruption’ leaving no moral ground for their protest.
But at the same time he came up with a green signal for the proposed long march of the PDM in Islamabad.
“They [opposition parties] managed the protest outside the ECP office very well,” said the interior minister.
“It is a very sensitive area, but they insisted on staging protest in the Red Zone. We allowed them and gave them a schedule of their programme. I am thankful to them that they met their commitment. With the same spirit, they are allowed to stage the long march in Islamabad.”
Rangers headquarters visit
Earlier, the interior minister visited the Pakistan Rangers headquarters, where he held a meeting with Director General Rangers, Sindh Major General Iftikhar Hassan Chaudhary and officers of the paramilitary force.
“The interior minister lauded the role of Pakistan Rangers, Sindh in maintaining peace and law and order,” said a statement issued by the Rangers after the meeting. “The meeting reiterated that all possible steps would be taken to ensure peace and law and order in Sindh mainly in Karachi.”
Published in Dawn, January 22nd, 2021