HYDERABABD: Firing a broadside at the ruling party, Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari has said the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s (PTI) leadership never learnt the principles of politics but claimed to be following politics of principle.
“I had said before [2018 general] elections that [prime minister] Imran Khan should learn principles of politics before doing the politics of principle,” said Bilawal while addressing a public gathering in Kotri town of Jamshoro district on Saturday.
PPP Sindh chapter President Nisar Ahmed Khuhro and other party leaders were also present. The public meeting was organised by PPP MPA Malik Asad Sikandar at Sachal Ground.
The PPP chairman inaugurated two flyovers built by the provincial government.
One of the flyovers has been built in Jamshoro on the Indus Highway and the other in Kotri, connecting the town and its industrial zone with the M-9 motorway.
Bilawal accused the prime minister of betraying the people in the name of principled politics.
“You acquired power but couldn’t maintain prestige. You and your blue-eyed boys got the government positions but couldn’t fulfil the responsibilities which come with that power,” said Bilawal. “All of your claims and promises have turned out to be lies.” He said the ruling party had promised the people rose gardens before the elections but only given thorns to them.
The PPP chairman accused PM Imran and his government of weakening the economy, increasing inflation and rendering people jobless as well as homeless.
He also challenged the assertion of some federal ministers that inflation had not affected the poor but only the rich.
“You have been blinded and your mind has been intoxicated by power and you cannot see, hear or feel what the people are going through.”
He criticised the government for changing its position over obtaining loans from international financial institutions and other countries.
“Those who said they preferred suicide over taking foreign loans today distribute sweets when they get the loans,” he said.
He accused the PTI-led federal government of punishing Sindh through electricity and gas outages, and slashing the province’s water supply as well as development funds. He said the province’s people were being punished for defeating the PTI in the general elections. “You have stopped Sindh’s water and electricity. Sindh supplies 80% gas to the whole country but its people are deprived of gas. Release of Sindh’s billions of rupees has been stopped, which has affected the development projects.”
Bilawal said Sindh’s people did not allow theft of their votes and they rejected the PTI leadership because they consider them as puppets. He claimed that the other reason for the alleged punishment was the people’s loyalty towards the late Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and his daughter Benazir Bhutto. “You are punishing them because they didn’t sell their conscience.”
He warned the PTI of a massive backlash against its current policies from the public, which could result in a long march from all provinces to Islamabad. According to him, deprivations of Balochistan remain unresolved, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s people want to protect their rights and Punjab’s people are suffering from incapacity of the incumbent government to deliver.
He then compared his party’s Chief Minister in Sindh, Syed Murad Ali Shah, with Imran and Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar and contended that Murad’s performance was far better than Buzdar’s.
He asserted that the Sindh government was the only one which had made good governance and service delivery its priority. “They can’t compete with our performance and services. The federation’s selected prime minister and Punjab’s Buzdar can’t compete with Murad Ali Shah of Sindh on performance as well as merit.”
The PPP chairman said that after suffering an electoral defeat, the PTI tried to oust his party’s government three months after the general elections but the attempt was foiled as Sindh once again rejected the puppets. “Sindh also rejected the JIT report.”
Bilawal said his family and party would face vindictive politics and they could not be frightened by imprisonment, putting their names on the Exit Control List or by referring their cases to the National Accountability Bureau.
“We have seen many pharaohs before you. You should learn from their doom. If you don’t stop, we will teach you how to avenge stolen votes.”
The Sindh CM said he had written to PM Imran to provide funds for dualisation of the Indus Highway’s 136-kilometre stretch in Jamshoro district. He said he had pointed out that the required funds were available in the federal coffers. However, as the Centre had yet to give its nod, the provincial government started work on the dual carriageway from its funds.