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January 31, 2020

Sirajul Haq terms privatisation of state institutions a dangerous ‘U-turn’

Lahore

 
January 31, 2020

Our correspondent

LAHORE:Jamaat-e-Islami Ameer Senator Sirajul Haq has expressed sorrow, saying that Prime Minister Imran Khan took another dangerous “U-turn” from PTI’s election manifesto and promises to the nation by announcing privatisation of state institutions.

The privatisation of state institutions has demand of IMF and donor agencies. Before selling out the remaining public properties, the prime minister should recall his old speeches wherein he had harshly condemned previous government for selling out public properties to please the western donor agencies, the JI chief said while addressing a training workshop of the JI workers at Mansoora on Thursday.

Siraj announced resistance to the move. He said it was tantamount to denuding the masses of their assets and depriving a large number of government employees from their jobs. He questioned how a government could run a state of 220 million people if it was unable to manage even a convention centre — a reference he made to the government plan to sell Jinnah Convention Centre Islamabad among other 33 properties.

Already on ventilator, he said, the ruling party was making unwise decisions with everyday passing. Had the government made recovery from those who looted the Steel Mills and PIA, there would have been no need to sell the state entities, he said.

It was an irony that private transport and airlines were making profits but the national carriers (PIA and Railways) were facing loss of billions of rupees, he said. Siraj strongly criticised the so-called mainstream opposition parties, saying they never raised voice on public issues but made noise only on the matters of their own interests.

The PTI and its predecessors, said Sirajul Haq, were the agents of status quo and two sides of the same coin. The country could no more afford the cosmetic politics and it must be run on true democratic principles, he said.

He stated the people were desperate and wanted to get rid of the ruling elite. The in-house changes or brining the same old players again in power corridors were not solution to the problems of people rather a real change was the need of the hour, he said.

Senator Siraj said the country and its politics were in the grip of sugar, land and flour mafias who were looting resources with both hands. It had become impossible for the common man to meet both ends in the prevailing situation, he said, adding the prices of basic commodities were touching skies and thousands had lost their jobs due to flawed economic policies of the present regime.

He said the government first tried to curb the media freedom through unjustified restrictions and it was now trying to start a clash with the judiciary, said the JI chief. JI Information Secretary Qaisar Sharif, other leaders and a large number of people from different areas attended the event.