MULTAN: Punjab Law Minister Malik Ahmad Khan has said that the PMLN is concerned about saving the state and tough decisions taken to save the country from default are in the interest of the country.
Addressing a press conference here on Wednesday, the minister said anchorperson Imran Riaz violated the Constitution by exploiting the right to freedom of expression on his YouTube channel. This was because in the past, the same anchorperson had been justifying actions against other journalists and issuing ‘fatwas’ against them, he said, adding that the country and institutions were theirs as well. "The heads of institutions are also ours. There must be legitimate criticism." Attacks on institutions were a clear violation of the Constitution and the law, he said, adding that the freedom of expression and material against Pakistan's foreign policy, sovereignty, integrity and security must be considered under Article 19-A of theConstitution. The Section 121 of the Pakistan Penal Code was applicable to violation of the law.
He said the government did not violate any court order. "When Imran Riaz was arrested in the jurisdiction of the Punjab government, no order of the Lahore High Court was received in this regard." If they found any LHC order, they would abide by it. He said Imran Riaz should explain his sources of income and how he purchased a bungalow in Lahore. Imran Riaz must explain how he got fisheries contracts worth millions of rupees. "Where the money came from and in which account it was deposited. Imran Riaz must explain his relationship with the Buzdar government."
He said PTI members would now wail over the issue of Imran Riaz. PTI Chairman Imran Khan and former Health minister Yasmin Rashid had also levelled allegations against the institutions and the PTI government imposed most restrictions on freedom of expression and silenced the media. Now Fawad Chaudhry was threatening that the whole nation would be on roads over the arrest of Imran Riaz. It was because he used to call some journalists traitors in the past and was not even loyal to his community.
The minister said the PTI gave the gift of inflation and unemployment to people, violated human rights and isolated Pakistan in the international arena. He said Fawad Chaudhry had sent a letter to the Supreme Court of Pakistan against 100-unit power concession given to poor people. More than 5 million poor people across Punjab would benefit from this concession and funds were approved for this in the annual budget.
He said they were working to protect the rights of poor at this difficult time and to alleviate their hardships. "With regard to coming elections, we are ensuring adherence to the code of conduct. We are ensuring in all 20 constituencies that weapons are not displayed or used at all."