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November 27, 2020

Maryam vows to attend PDM Multan rally

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November 27, 2020

LAHORE: PML-N Vice President Maryam Nawaz has said she will attend the Pakistan Democratic Movement's Multan rally on the instructions of her father. She said her father has asked her to keep personal grief aside and fully take part in the PDM rally in Multan. She announced her participation in the PDM rally when arrangements for the return of her grandmother Shamim Akhtar's body from London to Lahore were under way.

The arrangements for funeral of the mother of Nawaz Sharif and Shahbaz Sharif are under way, and she will be buried at Jati Umrah with other graves of Sharif family members.

Maryam claimed that she was fed "rat-contaminated food" when she was incarcerated at the Kot Lakhpat Jail in Lahore. In an informal conversation with journalists at Jati Umrah, she complained of the medication she was given in the prison, saying that it was "not fit for use at all". "I was forced to take fungus-infected medicines in prison," she claimed. Earlier, she had said cameras had been installed in her jail cell.

"The last time I talked to my grandmother, she was asking if I had been released from jail; my grandmother thought I was still in prison," Maryam said, referring to last year when she was incarcerated and released in November 2019.

"My grandparents loved Nawaz Sharif and Shahbaz Sharif," she said, noting how Shamim Akhtar had travelled to London to see the PML-N supremo despite her doctors advising against it. She said the death of her grandmother was a great shock to the Sharif family. She reiterated her earlier accusation that the PTI government had not informed her of her grandmother's death at a time when she was in Peshawar to address a Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) rally and mobile signals were not working.

"My son, Junaid Safdar, had left Lahore for Peshawar to inform me," she said. There was no telephonic contact at the PDM Jalsa, Maryam said, adding that she had told her father not to return to Pakistan. Responding to a reporter's question as to whether the country is moving in a "worrying trajectory" given the current circumstances, the PML-N leader said she had the same fears. "With the state the country is in right now, the government has to go," she said. "My analysis is that the situation is very bad and the current government can no longer function."

"A gas crisis is on the horizon and each electricity bill is already worth Rs 100,000 and over. Today, the government is talking about Israel, but it has lost the case of Kashmir. Voices from within arise when they [the government] supersedes others," she said.

With regard to her father and uncle, she said Shahbaz Sharif is in prison due to his loyalty to Nawaz Sharif. The same is the case with Hamza Shahbaz. She supported students and questioned why the Medical and Dental College Admission Test (MDCAT 2020) was being held when educational institutes have been shut down in the country. She questioned why the safety of medical students and their families is not being considered as important.