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August 7, 2017

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Gulalai case must be resolved under sexual harassment law: Bilawal

CHITRAL: The Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari on Sunday said the allegations by MNA Ayesha Gulalai against the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chief Imran Khan are very serious and this case should be resolved under the sexual harassment law

Talking to reporters in Chitral, Bilawal said Imran Khan introduced indecent language in Pakistani politics. “The political leaders should show decency and set aside personal differences,” he added.

The PPP chairman said the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) had lost public confidence due to its corruption and poor governance. He alleged that former prime minister Nawaz Sharif was using the state machinery for running his public campaign.

“The PML-N will realise its unpopularity when it hands over the government to the interim set-up in 2018,” he claimed, adding that people would notice a remarkable decrease in the crowd at the PML-N rallies ahead of the general elections. However, he said it was Nawaz Sharif’s right to contact the masses and seek their sympathy by portraying himself as innocent.

Responding to a question about the intolerance in Pakistani politics, Bilawal said the trend of mudslinging in Pakistan was dangerous. He said that this trend would damage the country’s politics. He pledged that his party would not become a part of such politics.“Allegations and counter allegations would discourage women from participating in politics,” he said.

Answering a question regarding whether he was considering contesting election from Chitral, he pointed out that the Bhutto family had a natural affinity with Chitral. However, he said the decision of fielding candidates rests with the party high command. He said that inclusion of Chitral in the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), creation of Mastuj district and establishment of a trade route to Central Asia would be made part of the PPP election manifesto.

Earlier, Bilawal met delegations from all walks of life, including women from the Kalash valley.It was his first visit to Chitral, the erstwhile stronghold of the PPP. A large number of people, including women, attended the gathering at the polo ground in Chitral town to welcome the PPP chairman.

Meanwhile, in a comment on Ayesha Gulalai’s sexual harassment allegations on the PTI chief, PPP leader Sherry Rehman said the allegations should be probed in a fair manner. “Women do not level such allegations if there is no substance in them,” she said while talking to the media in Chitral, Geo News reported.

The PPP leader said women are exploited in Pakistani society, adding that “the scale of justice should not be tipped against one gender”. Tehseenullah Khan adds from Haripur: Reham Khan, former wife of Imran Khan, on Sunday denied having any contact with the PML-N provincial chief Amir Muqam and Ayesha Gulalai.

Talking to reporters in Haripur, she said she is silent at will and Imran Khan should not test her. She said she never met Amir Muqam or had any contact with Gulalai as it was against her nature to defame or stab someone in the back. “I am not part of any conspiracy or plan as is being claimed by some of the PTI people,” she asserted.

She complained that she was being defamed by a lobby. “I am being dragged unnecessarily into this matter,” she complained.Reham Khan said she remained silent for two years after her divorce, but the way she was being defamed had forced her to break her silence.

Holding the Holy Quran in her hand, Reham Khan said that she believed in the Holy book and was answerable to Allah Almighty. “I am a journalist and a Pathan, who always speaks the truth,” she said.

She added that being a journalist she was able to express her feelings instead of paying others as she didn’t have ill-gotten money.To a question, she said neither former prime minister Nawaz Sharif nor his family had asked her to write a book on her life.

Commenting on the role of the media, Reham Khan said the media must not be used for mudslinging and this practice should be discouraged. “Don’t defame this sacred profession,” she said, adding that people didn’t have access to clean drinking water and were faced with a host of issues, but the media was busy with mudslinging.

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