Ishq-i-Rasool Day would have sent a much more effective message had it been observed peacefully, Deputy Prime Minister Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi said on Sunday.
He was talking to the media at the residence of Sardar Talib Hassan Nakai after offering his condolences on the death of Sardar Omar Nakai. Elahi disapproved of the performance of police in the Punjab. He said the law and order situation could have been controlled more effectively had the former cooperated with the federal government. Regarding Interior Minister Rehman Malik’s comment about the provincial government’s role in the protests in Islamabad, Elahi said the interior minister must have had some evidence to suggest that.
He said in dedicating a day to the love of the Prophet, the government had wanted to convey to the ‘West’ the anger felt by the people of Pakistan over the anti-Islam movie.
“The message of the day would have been more powerful had there been no riots,” he said. Elahi said general elections would be held in accordance with the schedule announced by the Election Commission of Pakistan. He said the provincial government should make arrangements for the local elections.
He criticised the provincial government’s spending on Bus Rapid Transit System and the Sasti Roti Scheme. He said funds allocated for other districts and sectors had been diverted to these projects.
Elahi said had the current government in the province not cancelled the projects started during his term, an underground train in Lahore would have been operational by now. On the National Reconciliation Ordinance case in the Supreme Court of Pakistan, he said relations between the prime minister and the apex court were cordial.
Published in The Express Tribune, September 24th, 2012.
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