LAHORE: PML-N information secretary Marriyum Aurangzeb has slammed Prime Minister Imran Khan for “lying” to the nation and the world by claiming that the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) government has achieved the highest GDP growth rate in the country’s history.
“In 2018, Pakistan’s GDP growth was 6.1. Imran Khan should mourn the inefficiency of his government for plummeting it into negative territory and now bringing it to 5.5, instead of celebrating,” she said responding to the premier’s statement on Friday.
Ms Aurangzeb lashed out at the premier saying that inflation, unemployment and poverty were killing people in the country, while he (Imran Khan) was shamelessly celebrating the so-called growth of the economy, which he completely destroyed in over three years of his rule.
“There is a long list of harsh economic realities about Imran Niazi’s government that he should tell the nation,” she said, adding the PTI government during its tenure had taken the highest loan of over $40bn in the history of the country, besides snatching jobs from six million people and pushing 20 million Pakistanis below the poverty line during its rule. Fiscal deficit had also reached Rs4,400bn and inflation 22 per cent, she lamented.
The former federal information minister asked why Imran Khan did not talk about the skyrocketing prices of electricity, gas, medicine and fuel, the highest trade deficit of the country reaching $45bn, devaluation of rupee against the US dollar from Rs123 to Rs184.
“Why had Imran Niazi not disclosed the plight of farmers looking for urea fertiliser? Who robbed Rs500bn of the nation in electricity and gas tariffs and imposed 17 per cent sales tax on baby milk and basic food items,” she asked.
Ms Aurangzeb said the price of DAP fertiliser had shot up from Rs2,400 to Rs9,700 per bag in the last three years, while that of a urea bag had increased from Rs1,200 to Rs2,800.
She alleged Rs40bn were stolen from the federal Covid fund and Rs1.5bn in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
“The only people Imran should be congratulating today are his own mafia friends that he had benefited from. The Imran-led mafias that made Rs550bn in sugar, Rs1,200bn in flour, Rs600bn in medicines and Rs75bn in BRT are the only ones rejoicing this imposed government,” she said.
Published in Dawn, January 22nd, 2022