PM urged to reconcile with Adiala inmate

Business leader encourages Shehbaz: shake hands with Imran, India

Amir Khan/APP April 24, 2024
Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif chairs a briefing regarding various developmental projects of Sindh government in Karachi on April 24, 2024. PHOTO: PID


Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif was urged on Wednesday to extend an olive branch to his political rival, the incarcerated Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) founder, Imran Khan, in a bid to foster national stability.

The call for reconciliation came during PM Shehbaz Sharif's day-long visit to Karachi, where he engaged with the business community, addressing their concerns and seeking input on trade and economic matters.

During a Q&A session, business magnate Arif Habib praised PM Shehbaz's past efforts, especially his role in securing a bailout package from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in his previous tenure. Referring to a meeting with IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva in the previous June, the owner of a leading brokerage firm encouraged the prime minister to broaden his horizons, suggesting he "shake two more hands" – one with neighboring India and another with the incarcerated PTI founder – to promote stability within the nation."Secondly, you should also shake hands with an inmate of Adiala jail. I think these two steps will yield positive results," remarked Habib.

Imran Khan, the PTI founder and former premier, remains behind bars facing a slew of criminal charges, including violations of the Official Secrets Act, terrorism, and corruption.

The prime minister invited the business community to collaborate with the government to resolve their issues and challenges, asserting that this was the only way to progress and bring development and prosperity to Pakistan.

"We should come together in the larger interest of the country, and our brilliant minds should work together to find ways to resolve the challenges and problems hindering the country's development and prosperity," he added, noting that this was the only path to regain lost glory.

Regarding the sugar situation in the country, the prime minister stated that the government would consider exporting the commodity if there is a surplus stock. He also emphasised the government's efforts to curb smuggling of the commodity.

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The prime minister said that the provision of a business-friendly environment was pre-requisite to facilitating the business community. He said that the country’s development was linked with the progress of business community.

Separately, the prime minister said the economic stability was a biggest challenge for the country at the moment that could be overcome with the coordinated efforts of the federation and the provinces.

“We should work together to serve the country and for the development of the provinces as with the joint efforts we can solve problems of the people of Pakistan,” the PM said in his remarks at meeting with Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah and his cabinet at the CM House.

The prime minister emphasized that the federation and the provinces could work in collaboration towards improvement of the economy.

Shehbaz called upon federal and the provincial governments to keep very close relationship to make our country developed nation. He said development of Sindh, Punjab, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan, was in fact the development of Pakistan.

Prime Minister hoped that the big investment opportunities will benefit to all provinces equally.

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Referring to foreign investment, the Prime Minister made a special mention of recent visits of the delegation of the kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the president of Islamic Republic of Iran to Pakistan and hoped that in coming months, many foreign delegations would visit Pakistan.

As a result of February 8 election, the people of Pakistan gave mandate to Pakistan People’s Party in Sindh while in Punjab, they gave opportunity to Pakistan Muslim League (PML-N). However, he said, “in the federation there is a split mandate and we have to respect it.”

Shehbaz mentioned his camaraderie developed with CM Murad Ali Shah and said that in case of any problem, they talked and sorted out things immediately.

“Due to such relationship, today the federal and the provincial ministers are sitting together and discussing ways to face the challenges confronted by our country,” he said.

He expressed gratitude to the CM Sindh and his cabinet for their warm welcome with great enthusiasm.

He said after arrival in Karachi he visited Mazar-e-Quaid and paid rich tribute to the father of the nation.

Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah congratulated Shehbaz Sharif on assuming office of the prime minister for second term.

Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Attaullah Tarrar, Federal Ministers Ahsan Iqbal, Dr Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui, Jam Kamal, Qaiser Shaikh and members of the provincial cabinet also attended the meeting.



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