- Khan ready for another charge at the govt
- Khan wants five demands met or he will protest to bring down the govt
Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan on Sunday presented a five-point charter of demands, threatening the government that he would take to streets if the demands were not met.
Addressing a huge rally on Sunday, Khan called for reduction in prices of petrol and diesel by Rs 20 per litre and Rs 5 per litre respectively.
His second demand pertained to reversal of infrastructure taxes on gas and the newly imposed taxes on electricity, in addition to cutting electricity rates by Rs 3 per unit.
He also called for making the Federal Board of Revenue a completely autonomous body as some Rs 700 billion were lost due to corruption of the department annually.
As his third demand, Khan said the PIA’s privatisation process should be stopped immediately. Additionally, the government must appoint professionals in key institutions like the Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) instead of favouring relatives of the ministers, he said.
Khan asked the government to release funds for payment to workers and employees of Pakistan Steel Mills (PSM) and other institutions, who had not received their salaries for the last five months.
He urged the federal government to bring back looted money from abroad. He also asked Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif and his sons to declare their assets, both in the country and abroad.
He said that Finance Minister Ishaq Dar had told the National Assembly on record that Pakistanis had some $200 billion in banks abroad. Pakistani nationals, he said, had bought property worth Rs 650 billion in Dubai during the last two years. Sharif’s son, he alleged, was living in a flat in London worth Rs 200 billion.
“Where did this money come from which the Pakistanis have spent aboard?” he questioned.
He said that the Sharif government had taken Rs 5,000 billion of loans during the last two and a half years.
If the government did not accede to his demands he would be compelled to come on the roads, he warned.
Imran alleged that the government was looting the national assets in the name of privatisation. First the institutions were destroyed and then the process for their privatisation was started. Both the PIA and the PSM used to be profitable organisations, but now they had been destroyed he said.
“Nawaz Sharif’s steel mill in Jeddah is running in profit, but the Pakistan Steel Mills has been shut down,” Khan told his supporters.
The PIA employees, he said, had protested against the privatisation of their institutions, the government had responded by firing bullets at them.
Khan said that the people of Balochistan had been deprived of their rights. Natural gas was supplied from Sui, but Quetta was the last place to be provided the facility.
He said that when his party comes to power, it would give all the due rights to the provinces.
He said that most areas of Balochistan had been deprived of clean drinking water. The construction of Katchi Canal was started in 1992, but it had not been completed till today. Instead of building Orange Line Train in Lahore, had those funds been utilised for construction of this canal, some 300,000 acres of land would have been irrigated, he added.
He said the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project was good for the country’s progress. But Nawaz Sharif was only giving favours to his relatives. The Khyber Pakhunkhwa chief minister was not taken into confidence, but the prime minister was accompanied by his brother, nephew and other relatives while dealing with the Chinese regarding the CPEC projects.
With the construction of the Western Route of the CPEC, the backward areas of the country would have benefited, but the prime minister started building the Eastern Route only to benefit Lahore, he alleged.
He regretted that the government had lost an opportunity to develop backward areas of the country by not launching projects under the CPEC.
He said that the Punjab government had obtained a loan of Rs 200 billion for only a 27-km metro train project.
He reiterated that unprecedented rigging had taken place in 2013 general elections.
The rally was also addressed by PTI leaders Jahangir Tareen and Sardar Yar Muhammad Rind.