LAHORE: Chief Minister Parvez Elahi on Thursday launched the Rescue 1122 motorcycle service for all districts across the province.

Speaking at the launch ceremony at the Rescue 112 headquarters, the chief minister said Shehbaz Sharif remained Punjab chief minister for three tenures and the Sharif family ruled the country for 21 years, but they could not bring a single project like Rescue 1122.

“If Shahbaz Sharif shows even one project like Rescue 1122 during his tenure, I will leave politics,” he added.

When Shehbaz Sharif came into power after his tenure, Mr Elahi said he tried to stop the emergency services, but he could not do it due to the pressure of the media and the high court.

Says recent floods underscore the need for institutions like Rescue 1122 in Sindh, Balochistan

Now, he said, Shehbaz Sharif was most perturbed over the PTI-PMLQ government in Punjab and they did not stop crying. He asserted that the case of the Model Town tragedy would surely reach its logical conclusion.

“This case is against Rana Sanaullah and the other accused, and they will be punished,” he vowed.

Mr Elahi said he paid tributes to Imran Khan and Parvez Khattak, who brought Rescue 1122 to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and the former premier had always supported him. He said it was a matter of concern that the governments of Balochistan and Sindh could not develop an institution like Rescue 1122. He said he understood its importance after the flood, as the villages of Sindh were in bad condition. “If you cannot create a rescue service yourself, follow what is done in Punjab,” Mr Elahi advised the Sindh chief minister. He said Imran Khan would get votes in Sindh because his intentions were good.

The chief minister said the Punjab government would create a foolproof driving license system and that this license would be accepted abroad as well. He said traffic accidents would be reduced by 50 percent if the licensing system was correct. He also talked about creating extra lanes on roads for ambulances. He said some 1,350 rescue motorcycles were given across Punjab, while each district would get 50 rescue motorcycles. He said the response time of motorcycle emergency services would be four to five minutes. He said emergency service would be possible even on narrow streets and difficult roads through motorbikes. He said the motorcycle emergency service would later be extended to towns and villages.

He said that after the armed forces, only Rescue 1122 was seen in flood-affected areas. He said foreign ambassadors had praised the rescue service of Punjab and the American ambassador had promised to provide support for Rescue 1122 in the meeting. No other organization was awarded by the United Nations except for Punjab Rescue 1122.

He said that Rescue 1122 was the best institution in South Asia and congratulated Director-General of Punjab Emergency Service Dr Rizwan Naseer for his work on merit and his resistance to accepting anyone’s recommendation.

He inspected the life-saving equipment and gave the keys of vehicles to the emergency officers of Nankana Sahib, Sheikhupura, and other districts. He also sent teams of rescue motorcycle services to the districts.

Published in Dawn, September 30th, 2022

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