ISLAMABAD, Oct 15 (APP): Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif Saturday held the previous government of Pakistan Tehreek I Insaf (PTI) responsible for the economic difficulties of the common man and expressed determination to take Pakistan out of economic hardship.
Addressing Mufti Mehmood conference here, he said the previous government violated the agreement with International Monetary Fund (IMF), creating difficult economic situation for his incoming government.
Chief of Jamiat Ulema Islam Maulana Fazlur Rehman organized the conference here in memory of his father and former chief minister of North West Frontier Province Mufti Mehmood.
The prime minister said when his coalition partners gave him the responsibility to lead the country as prime minister, Pakistan’s economy was in dire straits and the country was on the verge of default.
Referring to Imran Khan, he said a person wanted Pakistan to default and become another Sri Lanka.
He said under the guidance of Muhammad Nawaz Sharif and Maulana Fazlur Rehman, the coalition government went through a difficult time, however, it succeeded in taking steps for the progress of Pakistan.
“If our intentions are good, we fear Allah, then Allah removes all difficulties and opens new paths.”
He said he never wanted to put the burden of inflation on the people.
After the arrival of new Finance Minister Ishaq Dar, the government managed to reduce the petrol prices, he observed.
He said the government with the support of the coalition partners would consider further reduction in petrol prices.
“Pakistan did not become independent to remain poor but to become prosperous and emerge as a dignified country,” he remarked.
He paid tribute to Mufti Mehmood saying he was an eminent religious scholar, researcher, and political leader.
“I have great admiration for religious scholars.”
Mufti Mehmood was a teacher and taught thousands of students at his madressah in Multan and rendered great services for the cause of Islam, he reminisced.
He said Mufti Mehmood led a simple life and when he became chief minister of a coalition government of the present Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province he continued to engage his political contemporaries as he believed in dialogue.
Mufti Mehmood was in politics during the eras of Ayub Khan, Yahya Khan and Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and never closed the door to talks with his political peers and promoted dialogue.
Mufti Mehmood had a guiding principle that despite all differences, dialogue was an essential part of politics, he reminded.
Throughout his life, the PM said Mufti Mehmood was the embodiment of simplicity, sincerity and honesty.
He urged people to follow the teachings of Mufti Mehmood so that Pakistan could make progress and move ahead.
He said it was unfortunate that in the politics of today abuse of opponents had become rampant.
Shehbaz Sharif said that society was poisoned and divided and a group was created to humiliate others and destroy the values of society.
He said he was sure that the educated cadres of Jamiat Ulema Islam would stop the trend of abuse in politics.
The prime minister said he did not come across a bigger liar than Imran Khan.
“He is telling lies day and night and is constantly hatching conspiracies against the nation and institutions,” he said about Imran Khan.
In the past, Imran Khan always said that his government and the institutions were on the same page and he was acting independently but now he was telling that he ruled as a powerless person, he told.
Talking about his achievements as chief minister of Punjab, Shehbaz said as a servant of the people of Punjab he provided free medicines, delivered free textbooks and free laptops to students and extended financial assistance to orphans and widows.
“I arranged for urban transport and established a liver hospital where people received free of cost medical treatment.”