ISLAMABAD: On Thursday, Prime Minister Imran Khan met government supporters in the opposition campaign against the government PML-Q, who lodged complaints before him about the non-provision of development funds, price increases and holding them away from decision making.
“During a lunch he hosted for the government-allied groups, who were not attended by the Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q), the prime minister faced a tough situation, whose leader Monis Elahi later said in a substantive tweet that his party’s coalition with the ruling Pakistani Tehreek-i-Insaf was” for the vote and not for lunch.
— Moonis Elahi (@MoonisElahi6) November 5, 2020
The prime minister, on the other hand, told the representatives of allied parties that all their problems would be settled as soon as he checked them directly.
Last month, the opposition under the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) initiated a movement to overthrow the government on issues of price hikes, the provinces’ “unstable” economic condition and rights.
Government allies raise complaints about the inability to include construction funding, price hikes and holding them away from decision-making.
The Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM), Grand Democratic Alliance and Jamhoori Watan Party (JWP) were among the allied parties that attended the luncheon reception. They complained of lack of funds for growth, price inflation, lost parsons and not having them on board in decision-making.
Balochistan Awami Party chiefs, several federal ministers, Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Mahmood Khan, and Balochistan Chief Minister Jam Kamal Khan Alyani also attended the reception.
PML-Q Housing Minister Tariq Bashir Cheema, speaking to Dawn, said that his faction had not been brought on board by the Center in its decision-making process.
A PML-Q source said the party had also alleged that the prime minister traditionally visited Lahore but never met Deputy Speaker Chaudhry Pervez Elahi of the Punjab Assembly. The source said, “He [the Prime Minister] did not even ask about the wellbeing of ailing PML-Q President Chaudhry Shujaat.”
Mr Cheema said that the PML-Q had little to prove the public what the government had done so far. “If the ruling party does not mend its ways, it will be very difficult for us to continue to follow the PTI,” he said.
MQM leader Aminul Haq said his party president, Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui, had expressed dissatisfaction with the approach of the government towards meeting the demands of the party. He said his party had addressed the issue of missing MQM staff and the sluggish progress of the Rs1.1 trillion Karachi Transformation Plan’s execution.
Mr Siddiqui has said what response we should give to the families of the MQM employees who are absent. The government has equipped Karachi with a mammoth development package, but little can be seen on the ground. It’s already dim, and this gloom has been passed over to the Prime Minister,’ said Mr. Haq.
Mr Siddiqui later said in a private TV show that his party and other government supporters did not intend to undermine the government in the wake of the opposition’s anti-government campaign. He said, “We will not become part of any attempt to overthrow the government.”
Dr Fahmida Mirza, Federal Minister for Inter-Provincial Cooperation, addressed the question of the lack of development activities in her hometown of Badin and in central Sindh. She said the agencies and ministers of the federal government were not concerned about resolving central Sindh ‘s issues.
The question of missing persons in Balochistan, especially those belonging to his party, was also posed by JWP chief Shahzain Bugti. He said he had recovered several lost parsons of other parties in Balochistan, but no one so far from his own.
The prime minister told the allies that all the problems listed by them would be resolved by him. The allies, he added, will see something realistic about the problems. Mr. Khan also addressed the opposition ‘s campaign against the government with the allies and affirmed that he would not send the opposition leaders implicated in mega corruption and money laundering any NRO-like ordinance.
Talking about the country’s unprecedented inflation, the prime minister said he was directly reviewing the situation and assuring them that in the days to come prices would become stable.
While speaking to Dawn, Fawad Chaudhry, Minister of Science and Technology, said that the Prime Minister was of the opinion that the government could not undertake projects that would offer temporary benefits to allies and the PTI in the elections, but those that would have a profound impact on the economy of the country.
Published in Dharti News, November 6th, 2020