Updated Aug 21, 2018 12:27am

Ahsan Iqbal questions PTI govt's capability to fulfil promises made by PM Imran Khan

Javed Hussain

Former interior minister Ahsan Iqbal on Monday raised questions over the new government's capability to fulfil the promises made by Prime Minister Imran Khan in his maiden address to the nation.

"Imran Khan has promised [the nation] the heavens," Iqbal said while addressing a press conference in the federal capital. "[But] he does not have a compact strategy."

The PML-N leader said he was "surprised" after listening to PM Khan's address to the nation, broadcast last night.

Mocking him as the "prime minister-select", Iqbal stressed that PM Khan did not have any political experience.

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"Imran Khan's first [political] experiment is the PM Office," the former minister said, worrying that the new government was "inexperienced and lacked expertise in political matters".

"This experimentation will cost Pakistan," Iqbal warned.

The PML-N leader further complained that PM Khan's cabinet was "the same as that of former president Pervez Musharraf". He also expressed his concern about the fate of the projects started by the previous government.

Terming last month's general elections as the "most rigged polls in history", the PML-N leader said that his party had only become a part of the parliament "for the sake of democracy".

Iqbal also criticised PM Khan's decision to keep the interior ministry under him, stressing that the country needs a "full-time interior minister". He also recalled PM Khan's criticism of the Nawaz-led government for not appointing a foreign minister for more than four years.

He then blamed the prime minister for not announcing how many "megawatts [of electricity] he planned to generate in the next five years".

"Imran Khan did not promise [to start] any development project in Karachi. It would have been good if he would have announced a desalination plant project," he added.

The PML-N leader also wondered why PM Khan did not mention the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), saying that by not doing so the prime minister has "cast doubts".

"The anti-CPEC lobbies are trying hard day and night to cause harm to the project," said Iqbal, adding that Pakistan "did not have a debt crisis because of CPEC", which was "China's gift to the people of Pakistan".

Iqbal also pointed out that PM Khan had not spoken about the measures he would take to counter terrorism in the country, which was something he claimed that the "nation wanted to hear".

He then claimed that the previous government — of which he was a member — had wiped out terrorism in five years.

"The challenges that we had to face in 2013 are not present now."

Iqbal also accused the newly formed government of having a "one-point agenda" and a "Nawaz-phobia" that prompted PM Khan to "check [the former premier's] expenditures" after coming to power.

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