ISLAMABAD: It is "unfortunate" that Chief Justice of Pakistan Gulzar Ahmed and a person convicted by the country's top court delivered speeches in the same event in Lahore, Prime Minister Imran Khan said Wednesday, referring to the Asma Jahangir Conference.
The premier's statement came during inauguration ceremony of four new projects — Kamyab Jawan Markaz, Kamyab Jawan Green Youth Movement, Kamyab Jawan Innovation League and Kamyab Jawan Talent Hunt Youth Sports League — for the welfare of the youth at the Kamyab Jawan Convention in Islamabad.
"It is unfortunate that at a conference where the chief justice and judges of the Supreme Court are invited, who delivers a speech there? A person who has been convicted by the Supreme Court and has fled the country after lying," he said.
"No nation is destroyed solely because of corruption, but it is destroyed when people do not consider theft as something bad," the prime minister said, adding that when a nation's moral values die, that is when its downfall begins.
"That is why I have established the Rehmatul-lil-Alameen Authority [...] so we can learn from the life of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH)," he said.
The prime minister, referring to the audiotape that allegedly features former chief justice Saqib Nisar, said the tapes are the talk of the town, so "I think I should shed some light on the matter as judges are also being named".
The prime minister said it was important to understand how all of this begun, saying that when he stepped into politics 25 years back, he had termed corruption as the country's biggest problem.
The prime minister said when the prime ministers and ministers of a country are corrupt and they launder money out of the country, that is what makes a nation poor. "And such a nation can never move forward."
Moving forward, PM Imran Khan said the Panama case emerged in 2016, which revealed the names of people who had stashed their money abroad and PML-N Vice President Maryam Nawaz was also listed as having four flats in one of the most expensive areas in London.
"The case ran in court and after that, a JIT was formed. Instead of telling people how they obtained the [assets beyond means], they first cried 'mujhay kyun nikala' and then resorted to maligning the judiciary and the armed forces. I was already a bad person in their eyes," he said.
The premier said he was dragged to the Supreme Court, and over there, he submitted all the documents that the court had asked of him. "I was not even an officeholder back then, I was a sportsman."
"But when they were asked to provide trails, the courts were provided fraudulent documents, then came the Qatari letter, which was a fraud, then came the Calibri font, which was another fraud."
"Till now, they have not been able to provide a single document which gives a trail as to how they had obtained those four flats in London," he said.
The premier, at the outset of his address, said he told his mother at the age of nine that he wanted to become a Test cricketer, but all of his relatives brought his morale down, saying that he could not become one — and not be a part of the national team.
The prime minister said he not only became a cricketer but also led the team to their maiden World Cup victory in 1992.
"I worked hard, become the best bowler of Pakistan and later on, the world [...] everyone told me that it was impossible," the prime minister said.
The premier said when he wanted to build a hospital, establish a university in a rural area, everyone told him that he could not do it. "When I came into politics, people made fun of me — including major analysts — for 14 years."
PM Imran Khan said people told him that in a two-party system, a third party could not form the government. "Ever since we came into power three years ago, I keep hearing that we will fail."
"Everyone said it was impossible, but Allah made it possible," he noted, adding that no person has ever become successful through shortcuts, and that the secret to success was having a big vision and determination.
The prime minister said that the youth has got the opportunity to excel and at the same time benefit their country through the loans and skill development programmes being offered to them via Kamyab Jawan Programme.
The prime minister said the country went through a tough time due to coronavirus as businesses halted and prices of commodities shot up.
However, to alleviate the adverse effects of the pandemic, "the government, through Kamyab Pakistan, will provide interest-free loans to four million deserving households for building their own homes and teach them skills", he said.
The prime minister said that citizens of all the provinces and regions where the PTI is in power, including Punjab, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Balochistan, Azad Jammu and Kashmir, and Gilgit-Baltistan, will get universal healthcare, starting from January in Punjab.
PM Imran Khan said families could get their ailing relatives treated at hospitals under the health scheme — worth Rs700,000-1,000,000.
The prime minister said there were some problems that his government faced earlier, but now, Pakistan was moving towards becoming a successful nation. He reminded the people that it was crucial that they raise their moral standards.
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