SIALKOT: Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi said on Saturday the countries where politicians were not honoured and respected could not make progress.
Addressing the ground-breaking ceremony of Sialkot-Pasrur double carriageway at the Pasrur Cadet College near Sialkot, Abbasi said politicians must also be given respect like judges, generals and government officials. It were the politicians who run the country, resolve the issues and take the responsibility of their failures. He also said that no one in the country had been held accountable for his actions except for politicians, who had been living in a house of glass.
He said the print and electronic media too had been after the politicians, busy in exposing them rightly or wrongly. However, politician had always tolerated all such injustices and kept on performing their duties to serve the country, he added.
The PM said that 'Iqama' was like a visa and the former foreign minister Khwaja Muhammad Asif had been disqualified for life by the court only for having a visa, apart from the fact that he had paid all due taxes against his income. He opined that the permanent disqualification of politicians over such minor issues like having an 'Iqama' was not in favour of Pakistan or the politics of Pakistan.
PM Abbasi said he and his party (PML-N) had fully accepted all the verdicts of disqualification by the courts with open heart, but the future historians and the people of Pakistan would never accept such decisions. He said that seasoned politicians like Khwaja Asif, Zahid Hamid and others had spent their whole lives in the arena of the politics and masses honoured them because they were aware of their services for them.
The job for running the country rests with the politician, not the judiciary or the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), he added.
The PM said that in order to put Pakistan on the road to sustainable progress, the respect and honour of politicians and vote must be ensured at every cost.
He highly praised Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif for accomplishing scores of mega development projects in Punjab. He said the other provinces of the country had shared their wishes with him that they wanted a leader like him (Shahbaz Sharif). He said that all provinces other than Punjab had received equal funds but there was lack of will and determination to launch and accomplish mega projects.
He visited the site of 25.6-km long Sialkot-Pasrur road built at a cost of about Rs4 billion and said the construction of technical education institutions would change the fate of the area and initiate new chapter of progress and prosperity.
The PM said that the previous governments of Pervez Musharraf and Asif Ali Zardari too had funds, but the real development in the country was carried out only under the vibrant and dynamic vision of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif.
The PM said that during his eight-month tenure, he had not only inaugurated several development projects but also accomplished projects as old as 20 years. He said that in 2013, when PML-N came into power the national GDP was 3 per cent which jumped to 6 per cent in 2018 due to economically correct measures taken by the government.
The PM opined that the incumbent government of Pakistan Muslim League-N was the only government which had delivered and Nawaz Sharif was the only leader of the country who had vision and a will to deliver.
He said that the PML-N had never believed in mere talks or so-called points and it believed in action with true commitment and the masses of Pakistan were very well aware of it and would certainly show their trust in the PML-N in the upcoming elections of 2018.
Former foreign minister Khwaja Muhammad Asif, former law minister Zahid Hamid, Information Minister Marriyum Aurangzeb, MNA Syed Iftikharul Hasan, MPAs Rana Muhammad Afzal, Asif Bajwa, Ch Arshad Warraich, Rana Iqbal Harnah and Ch Muhammad Ikram, senior officials and a number of local government representatives were present on the occasion.
Monitoring desk adds: Referring to upcoming general elections, Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi said the vote of the people should be respected. "The decision made by the ballot boxes should be respected for the next five years."
Addressing the groundbreaking ceremony of Narowal-Lahore-Sialkot Motorway link road, PM Abbasi remarked that the upcoming general elections would be held before July 30.
“If the elections are delayed, then we will approach the courts and the people,” he said.
“Many people don’t want the elections to be held in the country on time,” PM Abbasi said.
The PM said: “I appreciate how tremendous work has been done by the former law minister Zahid Hamid Khan for progress of the country. He never refused whatever job was assigned to him.
“On the other hand, he was dragged on one bill despite the fact he had nothing to do with that bill, nor his name was mentioned in the report.
“I asked him not to tender resignation, but he said if the issue was sorted out due to his resignation, then he would like to resigns. This is the criterion of his politics of service,” he added.