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November 21, 2020

Shibli Faraz says opposition to be responsible if precious lives lost

National

 
November 21, 2020

ISLAMABAD: Information and Broadcasting Minister and Senator Shibli Faraz said on Friday the opposition should show some responsibility after the court decision and desist from holding political activities. He emphasised in tweets that the pandemic was a global reality, not an invention of the mind.

“Protecting public health is our number one priority. God forbid, if precious lives are lost, the opposition leaders and organisers of the rallies will be responsible for it,” he said. The minister said the PPP once a federal-level party was restricted to Sindh and Larkana thanks to Asif Zardari, while Maryam Nawaz was working tirelessly to make PML-N a party of Gowalmandi only.

Majority leaders in the PML-N, the minister claimed, were opposed to Maryam's narrative but no-one could speak up owing to lack of democracy in the party. In another tweet, Shibli Faraz said the opposition must not indulge into enmity with the people of the country. He said the opposition leaders will be held responsible if deaths from corona increased due to public meetings.

Meanwhile, addressing a press conference here along with Adviser to the Prime Minister for Institutional Reforms Dr Ishrat Hussain, he said the people, who came in rallies from all parts of the country, became carriers of the coronavirus. He said the provincial governments would take steps to discourage public meetings and in case of violation of law action would be taken against the political leaders and organisers.

He said the coronavirus was a reality as evident from the neighbouring countries where the situation was the worst. However, he said, Pakistan’s economy had come out of the crisis caused by the deadly disease. He said when the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government took charge, it initiated the process for institutional reforms as the institutions had lost their significance with the passage of time. He said Prime Minister Imran Khan formed a competent team led by Dr Ishrat Hussain to reform and make the institutions effective.

“Now we have to see where we stand and where we are heading,” he said. Shibli Faraz said inefficiency and corruption prevailed in the institutions in the past. He said important institutions like the state-run radio and TV and Pakistan Steel Mills were stuffed with favourites without merit.

Similarly, he said, institutions like Pakistan National Council of Arts, Lok Virsa and universities were spending 80 percent of their funds on salaries and administrative expenses. Every government, he said, had made political appointments in the institutions, which lost their standing. On the contrary, now the appointments on higher posts were done through selection board and nobody was challenging them in courts, he added.