PPP cements alliance with PML-N for Punjab by-polls

Published July 7, 2022
Minister for Railways and Aviation Khawaja Saad Rafique (R) and Adviser to PM on Kashmir Affairs Qamar Zaman Kaira (L) address a press conference on Wednesday. — DawnNewsTV
Minister for Railways and Aviation Khawaja Saad Rafique (R) and Adviser to PM on Kashmir Affairs Qamar Zaman Kaira (L) address a press conference on Wednesday. — DawnNewsTV

ISLAMABAD: Minister for Railways and Aviation Khawaja Saad Rafique on Wednesday expre­ssed the confidence that Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) candidates would win all 20 Punjab assembly seats in the by-elections on July 17.

“Voters are politically mature enough and we have full faith in their wisdom as they are fully aware of the prevailing situation,” Mr Rafique claimed while speaking at a news conference along with Adviser to PM on Kashmir Affairs Qamar Zaman Kaira.

Mr Kaira, who belongs to the Pakis­tan Peoples Party, announced extending his party’s unconditional support for PML-N in the by-elections.

He said the PPP leadership, after thorough analysis and discussions within the party, had concluded that PML-N as their ally could “end the evil spread by the previous Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) government”.

Saad Rafique confident of victory, Kaira promises full support

He said: “We want to end the scourge of PTI government’s vici­ous propaganda that created unwa­nted polarisation in the society.”

He said people had completely rejected the policies of PTI and entrusted full confidence in the PPP leadership.

Mr Rafique said: “The country is passing through a critical financial phase, due to increasing inflation, but there is a roadmap to get out of it by stopping the incompetent people from coming into power again, who had brought the nation at the verge of default and bankruptcy.”

He said people would support that party which whenever took the government’s reins, started improving the national economy, built motorways and set up universities.

“Everyone knows the leaders who had laid the foundation of a modern Pakistan by establishing a vibrant infrastructure, which is compatible with the rest of the world. The people have not forgotten who had introduced reforms in transport and health sectors,” he said.

The minister expressed the hope that the incumbent government would soon be able to overcome inflation and bring it down with its prudent policies.

He clarified that the Punjab government had earmarked required funds in the annual budget for the payment of electricity bills of citizens consuming up to 100 units per month, setting aside the impression that the facility was just for a few months.

Mr Rafique said the PTI leaders should focus on providing such a facility in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Gilgit-Baltistan and Azad Jammu and Kashmir, where their party was in the government instead of criticising the relief-oriented measures of the coalition government.

He said the government had also reduced the railway fares by 30 per cent to help passengers during three days of Eidul Azha.

Earlier, Mr Rafique thanked the PPP leadership and its workers for announcing unconditional support for PML-N candidates in the Punjab by-elections.

“Kaira Sahib has said that the PPP along with other coalition parties will actively work in the by-elections (for the support of PML-N candidates), which reflects that we have a common cause to steer the country out of the current crisis,” the minister said.

He said that when all coalition partners in the multi-party alliance of Pakistan Democratic Movement realised that the country was at the cusp of default, they decided to step in and move a no-trust motion against Imran Khan in the National Assembly, who was a threat to the national security.

Published in Dawn, July 7th, 2022

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