People in Lahore witnessed severe traffic jams on Saturday as Punjab government put containers on roads to block Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) and Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT)’s rallies against alleged corruption of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and his family.
However, despite the blockage, PTI chairman Imran Khan kicked off his party’s much awaited accountability movement, Tehreek-e-Ehtisab.
“They [government] have put containers in our way to block our rally but I have trust in the people of Lahore and know they will come out of their houses to take part in our rally against corruption,” Imran said while addressing his party workers before the start of the accountability movement.
Our Ehtesab rally entering Lahore. Amazing response of people, showing nation demands accountability of leaders. pic.twitter.com/jWnXRc6KoF— Imran Khan (@ImranKhanPTI) September 3, 2016
The PTI chief said he will reveal how the prime minister is destroying the future of the country through corruption. “If he [Nawaz Sharif] escapes Panama Papers inquiry, he will destroy more national institutions, including ECP, FBR, NAB and even courts because Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) has a history of attacking courts,” Imran claimed.
Corruption destroyed institutions: Imran
The cricketer-turned-politician advised the government to remove containers from the way of the Ehtisab rally. “Our protest is peaceful but if the government tries to put up any hurdles in our way then it will be completely responsible for the ensuing consequences.”
In response to a question, the PTI leader remarked that his workers will retaliate this time if met with resistance from the government. “This is the post Dharna PTI and this time people we will retaliate. They [Sharifs] think by prolonging the issue they can elude the inquiry but people will not forget.”
Qadri joins Tehreek-e-Qisas-o-Ehtesab rally in Lahore
Earlier, PAT chairperson Dr Tahirul Qadri announced his party’s ongoing Tehreek-e-Qisas-o-Ehtesab (Retribution and Accountability Movement) in Lahore will join PTI's movement.
Tahirul Qadri joins PTI's Sept 3 anti-corruption campaign
Terming the placement of containers an unconstitutional act, Qadri questioned if the PML-N-led government did not take out rallies during Pakistan Peoples Party’s era.
Qadri has already announced that his party will support PTI's September 3 protest against corruption. The PAT chief said PTI will also join his party’s Salmiyat-e-Pakistan March in Rawalpindi.
Lahore braces for Rs4b loss due to PTI march
Information Minister Pervaiz Rashid said on Saturday that Rs4 billion losses were incurred due to uncalled for protests in Lahore by the Imran-led PTI.
“Some Rs0.5 million losses were borne by the government because of Metro Bus service suspension whereas the actual losses totaled Rs4 billion,” he said while speaking to the media criticising the protest call given by PTI chief Imran Khan.
The minister went on to say that Imran only repeated the speeches he had already made in 2013. “I think he should have recorded his speech and played it from technologically advanced container that has facilities of air conditioning and music system.”
He asked the protesting parties why they cannot wait for one-and-a-half year even after getting answers by the Supreme Court and the Election Commission of Pakistan. “We are unable to understand their frustration.”
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