MANSEHRA: Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif Saturday said the generations of Pakistan cannot pay the loans taken during the government of Imran Khan.
"[Ex-premier] Imran Khan's government took such hefty amount of loans that our generations might not be able to pay them," the prime minister told a public gathering in Manshera.
The prime minister held the public gathering in Mansehra two days after he addressed the nation following the massive hike in the price of petroleum products.
The prime minister said his government was forced to increase the rates of petroleum products as the previous regime had left "emptied" the national exchequer.
PM Shehbaz acknowledged the "pain" of the people due to the rising inflation but blamed the PTI-led government for the issue and said his team would work to reduce it.
Lashing out at Khan, the prime minister said he did not deliver on his promise of five million homes during his tenure. "But we have, to cushion the inflation's effect on people, have announced a subsidy package."
"If I get a chance, I will turn Khyber Pakhtunkhwa into Punjab," he vowed, giving an ultimatum to KP CM Mahmood Khan to reduce the price of wheat in the province.
The prime minister termed himself as the "servant of Pakistan" and labelled Khan as a "miscreant" — in a reference to this week's riots in Islamabad and across the country, which saw the deaths of three people, including a policeman.
"I will fight till the end for people's prosperity," he added.
Talking about Balochistan's local government polls, the premier said they were conducted in a peaceful manner throughout. "The voter turnout was 30%-35%."
PM Shehbaz said the people of Balochistan had now started believing in the province.
Prior to PM Shehbaz, PML-N Vice President Maryam Nawaz addressed the jalsa, where she praised the incumbent government's recent steps taken for Pakistan's "prosperity".
The PML-N leader said the prime minister was the "actual servant of the people, who had worked day and night for the development of Punjab, and under him, Pakistan's fate would change".
She said Khan "wounded" Pakistan but assured that PM Shehbaz and PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif would heal the wounds.
Talking about the "Azadi March", Maryam said Khyber Pakhtunkhwa had rejected the long march based on "violence and brutality". She chided Khan for "wasting" the hard-earned money of the KP people in his march.
Maryam said the taxpayers' money could have been used to set up schools and colleges in the province, but the PTI chairman deemed it better to utilise them for his march.
The PML-N leader noted that the ousted prime minister used the KP CM's helicopter for travelling, while some of the cars in the jalsa were of government number plates.
She said Khan had promised the people of holding a sit-in, but in the morning — when the march reached Islamabad — he "made a run for it" by calling it off.
Maryam berated the PTI chairman for asking the Pakistani youth to lay down their lives for his march, but would not ask his own children to come back from London and partake in the anti-government campaign.
She said revolutions neither come through helicopters nor a parachute" — taking a jibe at the PTI leaders who jumped ships. "People were more teary-eyed because of Imran's betrayal than the shellings."
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