LAHORE: Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Chaudhry Fawad Hussain has said that political leaders like Asif Ali Zardari and Nawaz Sharif have caused severe damage to the national economy through foreign debts and the PTI government had to pay off those loans.
Talking to the media on Thursday along with Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Political Communication Shahbaz Gill, he said the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) had vanished in the local government (LG) elections in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
Mr Chaudhry advised PML-N leader Maryam Nawaz to express sympathy with her party’s losing candidates and motivate them after their sheer defeat in the KP LG elections, instead of celebrating the victory of other opposition parties.
He said the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) was still the largest political party at the village council level in KP.
Holds media responsible for keeping opposition alive
Mr Chaudhry said Asif Zardari used wheelchair whenever he appeared before a court, trying to show that he was suffering from serious diseases, but after getting a bail he started raising hollow slogans and making tall claims.
The minister said the PPP even did not have the candidates to contest elections in Punjab as Asif Zardari’s policies had made the party unpopular in the country.
He said such political parties were alive only because of the media and programmes at private TV channels. These parties would be eliminated the day the media would stop giving them coverage, he added.
Mr Chaudhry said the sole purpose of such political parties was to spread negative propaganda over the issue of inflation, adding that those who were ruling Sindh for 30 years have now claimed to make a plan for that province.
These political leaders could not even visit Larkana and Nawabshah due to their unpopularity, what to talk of becoming a power in Islamabad and Lahore, he added. Nawaz Sharif and Asif Zardari would have to spend their lives now in foreign countries, he added.
The minister said that previous governments did not build any dam after Tarbela and Mangla, but the PTI government started work on constructing new dams after which the water reservoirs had increased significantly. There were about 200,000 companies working in the country, out of which 157,000 were set up during the past 30 months, he said.
He said the PTI government had put focus on development of the agriculture sector due to which five major crops had yielded bumper production, adding that production of rice, wheat and corn was historic while the cotton crop went up by 44 per cent.
Mr Chaudhry said Pakistan’s economic growth was moving in the right direction as the country had witnessed a record sale of motorcycles, vehicles and agriculture pesticides.
He said the previous governments had taken $55 billion debt and it would have to be returned over the next five years.
The minister said Pakistan, as per vision of Prime Minister Imran Khan, had successfully overcome the Covid-19 pandemic. He said that under the leadership of Prime Minister Imran Khan, Pakistan was moving towards progress and prosperity.
Speaking on the occasion, PM’s special assistant Shahbaz Gill said that times had changed and the people understood how the PML-N and the PPP derailed the economic process and deprived the residents of Sindh of their basic rights.
He said the people wanted to know who spent such a huge amount in the wedding ceremony of Junaid Safdar, as his mother had claimed that she did not own any property, neither in Pakistan nor in London, while his father’s monthly income was Rs1,500.
Adviser to the PM on Trade and Investment in the United Kingdom and Europe Sahibzada Jahangir said the people of Pakistan could not even imagine to what extent Nawaz Sharif and Asif Ali Zardari owned properties worth billions of dollars in London.
He said that nine million overseas Pakistanis respect and love Prime Minister Imran Khan due to his honesty and commitment to put Pakistan on the way to progress and prosperity.
Published in Dawn, December 24th, 2021