Pakistanis are getting conscious about sanctity of votes, says Nawaz

  • Deposed PM promises to make Karachi ‘a city the world admires’ if PML-N is elected to power

  • Says federal govt helped in bringing peace to Karachi, will develop it at par with Lahore

KARACHI: Deposed prime minister Nawaz Sharif on Thursday said that the people are getting increasingly conscious about the sanctity of their mandate, as he promised a better future to the people of Sindh, especially Karachi, if they brought the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) into power in the upcoming general elections.

The PML-N chief said this during a rare visit to Karachi as his party seeks to expand its influence in the sprawling metropolis, which is traditionally a stronghold of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) and Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), ahead of the general elections this year.

Addressing two separate gatherings during his daylong tour, Nawaz said that time is changing in the country and people are getting increasingly aware about the sanctity of their vote.

“The PML-N firmly believes in serving the people of the country without any distinction which is which there has been a surge in its popularity across the country,” Nawaz said while addressing the provincial executive committee members of PML-N Sindh chapter.

The former PM also reaffirmed PML-N’s commitment to restore the lost glory of Karachi on sustainable grounds and claimed that absolute commitment towards the cause has already brought about marked improvement in the port city’s law and order situation.

“The difference is evident through the hustle bustle currently registered as compared to what it was in 2013,” said the PML-N chief, adding that violent crime and terrorism ruled over the city five years ago.

“All stakeholders were taken on board during a meeting held at Sindh Governor’s House in September 2013 leading to a consensus decision regarding the restoration of peace in the metropolis,” he said, adding that prudence adopted by the political leadership at the federal and provincial levels has helped the citizens to come out of the sphere of fear.

Nawaz said it was incumbent upon provincial authorities to ensure a healthy environment for the Karachiites.

Emphasizing that every city of the country was dear to him, the PML-N chief said it was extremely painful to register persistent water scarcity in a cosmopolitan city like Karachi. The city is also exposed to severe challenges like inadequate disposal of garbage and poor sanitation, all at the cost of public health.

Referring to the recently inaugurated Lyari Expressway in Karachi, the PML-N president said his party’s vision is connecting people of the country besides facilitating their mobility prerequisite for their socio-economic well being.


Addressing a public gathering earlier in the day, the thrice-elected prime minister spoke of the difficulties he faced when visiting Karachi.

He promised that if the PML-N is given a chance in the upcoming elections, it will turn the metropolis into a city that not only the people of Karachi will appreciate, but the one that the whole world will admire.

“I have issues when I visit Karachi,” he said, adding that it is not the Karachi it was supposed to be in 2018.

Boasting the development work in Punjab’s capital, Nawaz said that Lahore has surpassed Karachi. He observed that there are trash heaps everywhere, pollution, and unhygienic water if there is water at all in Karachi.

Expressing his grief over the sorry condition of the city, Nawaz said that Karachi could have been the best city in Pakistan and Sindh could have been a more developed province. Explaining how his government had decreased load-shedding and terrorism and improved business, the PML-N chief went on to say that when “we [PML-N] make promises, we fulfill them”.

He reminded the crowd that the metropolis has benefited a great deal from the steps taken by the PML-N government since 2013.

“There was chaos in Karachi, and we ended it,” Nawaz told the crowd, recalling the launch of the Rangers operation in the city in 2013.

“Karachi has become a lively city again. What we promised, we delivered,” he claimed. “We will, God willing, change the face of Sindh and Karachi both,” he said, vowing that the provincial capital will become a city that the whole world admires.

Nawaz also criticised the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s government in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

“They used to call the Metro bus a jangla bus. Now they’re building the same jangla bus in Peshawar when the elections are right around the corner. They should have started work on it in 2013,” he said, terming it a “U-turn”.

The PML-N president also criticised the Billion Tree Tsunami project, claiming only 200 trees had been planted.

Besides that, he reminded the crowd of a Mardan rapist and murderer who killed a minor girl in January has yet to be traced.

“I couldn’t even complete my term. I was removed because I did not accept a salary from my son,” he said, repeating a common refrain of his since the July 28 Supreme Court Panamagate judgement that disqualified him from public office. “They are plotting to keep Nawaz Sharif away from elections, maybe for my entire life,” he said, adding that the people will not accept this.