ISLAMABAD: In an apparent reference to Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) President Shehbaz Sharif and former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, Prime Minister Imran Khan said on Saturday that one person who looted the nation’s wealth had dashed off to London and the other is trying to escape as well.
“Sometimes wealth accumulated through unfair means can cause great problems,” he told students at an event organised at his alma mater, Aitchison College, in Lahore.
“Some people are trying to escape to London for their wrong deeds. You’re lucky to be receiving the best education and facilities. Use this knowledge for the welfare of the country,” he added.
Earlier, the prime minister laid the foundation stone of the Naya Pakistan Housing Scheme in the city of Renala Khurd in Punjab’s Okara district.
Speaking on the occasion, the premier said the provision of basic necessities to the masses was the state’s responsibility.
“We will make five million homes for the poor,” he reiterated.
“The private sector will build these homes and the government will just facilitate them. This will provide opportunities to youth to set up small industries and increase the growth rate too.”
Imran noted that such projects required strenuous efforts and that was why previous governments had not undertaken such endeavours. “We will take up every difficult task,” he vowed.
“We want every citizen to have a roof over their head and we will accomplish this goal.”
The prime minister promised to come up with projects for the residents of informal settlement and provide them with clean water.
He also said the government wanted to introduce a mortgage system similar to that in the West.
Quoting the exemplary traits of the state of Madina, the prime minister observed that it had uplifted the poor strata of society.
“The state of Madina even cared about animals and without such attributes a society can’t grow and prosper. Similarly, in developed societies, governments fulfil every fundamental need of the citizens,” he added.
Imran acknowledged that the country was passing through a difficult phase and facing economic challenges. However, he hoped that the Naya Pakistan housing initiative would pull the country out of the crisis.
The prime minister also inaugurated the world’s largest picture wall inside the Lahore Fort. The wall has been restored and conserved by the Walled City of Lahore Authority in collaboration with the Aga Khan Trust for Culture. It will be opened for the public soon.
Speaking at the Lahore Fort, Imran noted that Turkey and Malaysia were generating $40 billion and $20 billion respectively from tourism.
“However, Pakistan’s earning from this sector is negligible,” he lamented.
The premier said his government had formed a taskforce for the development of the tourism sector.
“The country has tremendous tourism potential, but unfortunately previous governments did not pay attention to this sector,” he maintained.
“Most hill resorts [in the country] were developed during the British rule. For the first time, we are developing 20 new hill resorts. The government has decided to preserve heritage and develop the tourism sector for which funds will be reserved in the budget every year.”