LAHORE: The nation will not remain silent in case of a threat to the sovereignty of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Railways Minister Khwaja Saad Rafique said on Tuesday.
The minister was speaking to journalists after inaugurating a refurbished rake of the Hazara Express at Lahore Railway Station. Rafique said Pakistan would not become party to a proxy war. He said the nation would sagaciously deal with the Yemen imbroglio. “The kingdom is a strategic partner of Pakistan. The nation will not hesitate to support it on the issue,” Rafique said.
He said the kingdom had immense religious significance for Muslims across the world and no compromise would be made over its sovereignty. Rafique said Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had cleared all ambiguities on this account in his recent policy statement.
The minister said a judicial commission had been constituted to probe allegations of electoral malpractices in the 2013 general elections due to the obstinacy of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) chairman Imran Khan. He said there was no need for this. Rafique said Khan had placed his ego at a higher pedestal than the state. He said this did not augur well for democracy.
Rafique said the ongoing operation in Karachi was being carried out to eradicate criminal and anti-state elements. He said it was not directed against a single political party. Rafique said the Muttahida Qaumi Movement was not being targeted under the auspices of the operation.
He said the government had put Pakistan Railways back on the road to recovery. Rafique said the derelict department was being revamped to harness its full economic potential. He said maximum facilities were being extended to passengers in comparison to the past. He said the department had increased its revenue through teamwork.
Published in The Express Tribune, April 15th, 2015.