‘Clean up your own house first’

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Recent agitation against the Punjab government on the intermediate result fiasco, underscores the growing wedge between the youth and a Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) desperate to woe the younger generation. The protests could not have come at a worse time for the Sharif’s, who are trying to mobilise the public against the federal government. Following the cancellation of the intermediate exams at four Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education (BISE) centres in Punjab, students and the youth have raised fingers at the credentials of the Punjab Chief Minister (CM) to mount an anti-corruption campaign against the federal government. The failure of the online examination system across Punjab has sparked anger that now risks the 28 October rally by the Sharif brothers against the federal government, Pakistan Today learnt on Sunday.
Students have asked on what grounds are the Sharif brothers taking out a rally against corruption when the education boards in their own province had become the hub of corruption. While the Punjab CM was visiting education institutes to garner support, the cancellation of Inter-1 result at four BISE boards, including Lahore, Gujranwala, Multan and Faisalabad, sparked rage amongst students who chanted slogans against Shahbaz and Nawaz Sharif and set Punjab government advertisements on fire. After his Inter result was cancelled, student Wasif Ali said, “Everytime I find the Punjab CM criticising corruption by the federal government, I want to ask him: what happened at the four BISE boards, Mr CM?”
“Is it because of his love for education that no permanent education minister has been appointed in Punjab,” he said, “the education ministry has failed due to its incompetence and the CM should not expect the youth to turn up at his rally.” Student Kashif Idress said students and the youth are important to political parties since participate in rallies and movements with enthusiasm. “There are two rallies next week, one by Imran Khan, one by the Sharif brothers but I want to ask why are the Sharif brothers launching a rally against corruption while the Punjab’s youth is protesting against them on the streets.”
“The parents of female students are sitting on roads and chanting slogans against the Punjab government but his government has ordered police to beat up students protesting for their rights. Why should we join him in the rally?” Kashif asked. Another intermediate student, Adeel Ahmad said it was ironic the PML-N was holding a rally against corruption when the CM himself was supervising corruption in Punjab. “While Shahbaz has rightly suspended the BISE Chairman and Controller, no action has been initiated against the man behind the fiasco, BISE It Consultant Dr Majid Naeem, who is related to a PML-leader,” Adeel said.
He said it was common knowledge that Dr Majid had corruptions cases registered against Majid, who had been terminated from Punjab University on corruption charges. He said the fact that the PML-N was turning a blind eye to Majid’s corruption, showed their hypocrisy. Speaking to Pakistan Today, students unions condemned the corruption in the BISE and the police torture against youth.
Insaf Students Federation (ISF) President Farukh Habib condemned the torture on students by police. He said Nawaz and Shahbaz had played ‘friendly opposition’ for three and a half years and stood behind Asif Ali Zardari. He said the corruption at BISE had exposed themselves before the youth and students. He said the youth will not participate in the Punjab government’s hypocritical rally on October 28.
Islami Jamiat Taliba (IJT) Nazim-e-Aala Abdul Rashid condemned the police torture against protesting students. He said no one had the right to stop students from demanding their rights and police torture of students was condemnable. He said the BISE examination had ended merit and promoted private sectors schools and colleges. He demanded the government free students arrested by police.
It is important to mention the first time in Pakistan’s history, the intermediate result was cancelled, with students holding the CM and ‘incompetent ministers’ responsible.

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