We could have formed govt in Punjab, claims Khursheed Shah

Federal minister says the party let go of the opportunity provided by Musharraf.


Our Correspondent December 25, 2012
Federal minister says the party let go of the opportunity provided by Musharraf. PHOTO: FILE

SUKKUR: The Pakistan Peoples Party-led government is going to complete its tenure because we followed the policy of reconciliation which was formulated by Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto, said Federal Minister for Religious Affairs Khursheed Ahmed Shah, while addressing a seminar organised in connection with the Shaheed Benazir Week on Tuesday.

The federal minister claimed that former president Pervez Musharraf had offered the PPP the chance to form the government in Punjab in 2008, "but we refused in the larger interest of the country and the people." The PPP had won 107 seats in the Punjab Assembly, with the Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid bagging 80 seats and independent candidates 42 seats, added Shah.

Shah said that the Charter of Democracy, which the PPP signed with its chief political rival, the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), symbolised that policy. Its goal was to avoid any confrontation between the two parties. "The PPP signed the document with the party that fabricated cases against our leaders and workers."

Taking a swipe at Tehrik Minhajul Quran chief Allama Tahirul Qadri's motto, "Riyasat ya siyasat" [State or Politics], Shah said that the slogan was earlier used by dictators like Ayub Khan and Yahya Khan.

Counting the achievements of the present government, Shah said that it had restored the 1973 constitution in its original form. "The PPP government gave autonomy to the provinces, passed the NFC Award, started work on the Thar Coal Project, and scrapped the Kalabagh Dam once and for all." He also criticised Sindh United Party chief Jalal Mehmood Shah for not resigning as speaker of Sindh Assembly in 1997, when Nawaz Sharif talked about constructing the Kalabagh Dam.

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