PTI Govt taking steps to remove deprivations of South Punjab people: Qureshi

MULTAN, Feb 15 (APP):Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mehmood Qureshi on Tuesday said the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government was taking steps to remove the deprivations of South Punjab people by establishing a separate province.

Qureshi said he wondered as to why the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) was silent on the issue of South Punjab province. If the PML-N were serious then it should support the government for a constitutional amendment in that regard.

He was addressing a ceremony, in which PML- N local leader Sajjad Ansari joined the PTI.

The minister said he had written letters twice to the PML-N and the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) in order to seek their help for the establishment of South Punjab province, but received no response from the two parties.

He said today the country was at turning point. Both the PML-N and the PPP had enjoyed power for more than 40 years. The PPP formed governments for five times, while the PML-N enjoyed power in Punjab since 1985 except a short span of time.

The PTI, he added, had to assume charge of the government in tough circumstances and take some difficult decisions. The incumbent government inherited an empty national exchequer, with 20 billion dollar deficit.

Today, he said, the nation was paying price for the ill-conceived policies of last PML-N regime, and the incumbent government had to pay interest on the massive loans taken by the previous regimes.

Similarly, he said, inflation was the a gift from the former rulers, who today in opposition were shedding crocodile tears.

The foreign minister expressed the hope that the current government would steer country out of economic crisis as it had put the national economy on track.

Qureshi recalled that the leadership of both the PML N and the PPP had been levelling corruption allegations against each other. But today they were united for the sake of their own interests.

The PML-N, he said, had questioned the transparency of 2018 general election by not accepting the incumbent government and its allies. But now its leaders had all the way visited the house of leaders of an allied party of the government to seek their cooperation for no-trust move, he added.

However, they got nothing from the Chaudhary Brothers, the minister said.
Qureshi said the PTI government had been working on its agenda of national development, but the opposition had no such plans.

He said some 10 new dams would be constructed in the next ten years, which would strengthen the economy of the country through agriculture. Similarly, Pakistan was discussing cheap gas pipeline projects with Turkmenistan and Iran, which help abolish the gas crisis in the country, he hoped.

Qureshi reiterated that the PTI government strongly believed in serving the people. It was offering health cards to every citizen so that their families could get treatment up to Rs 1 million annually. “We want to take the country on path of development.”

About inflation, Qureshi remarked that inflation was a global phenomenon and the incumbent government was striving hard to to overcome it.

He said the PTI was the most popular political party of the country. In the local body election in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, it had to face only Jamiat-e-Ulema Islam-Fazl as other parties, including PML-N, PPP, and the Awami National Party lacked presence across the province.

Qureshi expressed the hope that the PTI would win the local government elections in Punjab also.

Special Assistant to the Punjab Chief Minister Javed Akhtar Ansari and Sajjad Ansari, Qadir Ansari were also present on the occasion.