Bilawal leads ‘Caravan-i-Bhutto’ in show of strength

PPP aims to charge people against PTI govt on the eve of death anniversary of ZAB

Hafeez Tunio March 26, 2019
Caravan-e-Bhutto would reach Garhi Khuda Bux on April 4. PHOTO: TWITTER

KARACHI: Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari on Tuesday embarked on his journey to Larkana by train, claiming that he had started the trip to mobilise the people against the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government on the eve of the death anniversary of his grandfather Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, which falls on April 4.

Bilawal began the journey by reciting a poem to pay tribute to his grandfather.

Terming it “Caravan-i-Bhutto”, the PPP leaders said that it will reach Larkana in two days to attend the anniversary.

The decision to launch the caravan has been taken at a critical time, when Bilawal along with his father Asif Ali Zardari and aunt Faryal Talpur is facing money laundering cases.

According to observers, it was a message of confrontation to the PTI government and interaction with party workers to be prepared for any eventuality in the wake of Zardari and Faryal’s possible arrest.

Witnesses say it was an unexpected welcome for Bilawal as a large number of people not only turned up at all railway stations from Karachi to Nawabshah, but many were seen on the rooftops of buildings in areas wherefrom the train passed.

According to party schedule, it is a two-day journey where Bilawal is supposed to address the crowds at 25 places from Karachi to Larkana, but the PPP chairman opted to stop the train at unscheduled places given the large assembly of people.  His special train comprising 13 bogies was packed with PPP leaders, provincial ministers, senators, MNAs, MPAs and journalists.

Two luxury saloons are under the use of Bilawal, the Sindh chief minister and senior leaders of PPP. The rest of the train is divided into sleeper, economy and air-conditioned bogies.

When the train, which left Karachi Cantt station at around 1130am, reached Jungshahi railway station, it was welcomed by PPP’s local leaders led by Senator Sassui Palijo with rose petals.

Bilawal addressed the workers and then stopped at Jungshahi station where he was given a warm welcome by party leaders and workers.

Addressing a large crowd, the PPP chairman said, "People of Pakistan are with us today. Zulfikar Ali Bhutto sacrificed his life but never took any U-turn, never surrendered before a dictator and never betrayed the nation."

The remark was an obvious hit at Prime Minister Imran Khan, who has in the past said that taking a U-turn to reach one's objective was the "hallmark of great leadership".

"Today, the rulers of this country are afraid of Bhutto's workers and his grandson," said the PPP chairman.

Bilawal said that he would not let the rulers snatch the rights of the province.

Referring to the rulers, the PPP chairman said, "They feel that the grandson of Bhutto will bow down and PPP jiyalas will escape leaving him alone in this critical time. I want to tell them that I am the son of Benazir Bhutto and will not surrender. I and these jiyalas are ready to sacrifice our lives for the sake of this country and democratic values."

Commenting on the train march, Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry said the only positive thing about the journey was that PPP had to pay for railway tickets. He quoted Railways Minister Sheikh Rashid as saying that Rs1.1 million had been paid for the train tickets.

The minister asked the people of Sindh and lawmakers to take notice that NFC share for the province was allegedly being sent abroad. He claimed that there would be a wave of change in Sindh soon.       .

Conspiracies against Sindh govt to fail: Bilawal

He said that PPP had nominated the main accused in fake accounts case Faryal Talpur and Sherjeel Inam Memon as members of Public Accounts Committee of the province, which was tantamount to making mockery of the accountability system.

The Sindh Chief Minister’s Adviser for Information, Law and Anticorruption Barrister Murtaza Wahab said that the “Caravan-i-Bhutto” launched under the leadership of Bilawal was a true reflection of hopes, aspirations and sacrifices of the people of the country. He congratulated the party leadership and workers on the success of the event.

Talking to the media, Wahab said that the objective of the caravan was to strengthen Pakistan as well as democracy. He said that people of Pakistan have endless love and devotion for Bilawal and added that the slogan of Bhutto would echo form every home - from Karachi to Kashmore and Larkana to Lahore.

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