Lahore, 13 Dec. 2020 (‘Dawn’ and Media Reports)
Opposition parties under the banner of Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) today blasted the government on the historical hike in cost of living and ill-governance and on bureaucracy for interference in national politics.
Pakistan is ruled by Pakistan Tehreek e Insaf (PTI), a political party led by former sportsman turned politician Imran Khan, 68 years old, has no experience of any kind of job or of any business in his life time.
Sixth power show by the opposition parties led by Maulana Fazal U Rahman, Head of Jamiat Ulema Islam (JUI), Chairman PDM was held in the grounds of historical site of Lahore’s Minar-i-Pakistan. It is the venue on 23rd of March, 1940, Muslim leadership of then British India passed resolution for separate land for Muslims of India.
The public gathering was addressed by almost all major politicians of Pakistan including former three times ousted Prime Minister Mohammad Nawaz Sharif and leader of Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz Faction); Maryam Nawaz Sharif, Vice President PMLN; Bilawal Zardari Bhutto, Co-Chairman, Pakistan People’s Party;
Maulana Fazal U Rahman, Chief of JUI and Chairman PDM; Awais Noorani, Chief of Jamiat Ulema-i-Pakistan’s (JUP); Ameer Haider Khan Hoti, a senior leader of Awami National Party (ANP); Sardar Akhtar Mengal, Chief of Balochistan National Party (BNP); Mehmood Khan Achakzai, Chairman, Pakhtunkhwa Milli Awami Party; Prof. Sajid Mir, Emir of Jamiat-i-Ahle Hadees; Javed Hashmi, former President, Pakistan Tehreek e Insaf (Imran Khan); and other leaders.
in his address through video link from London (UK), Former three times elected and ousted Prime Minister Mohammad Nawaz Sharif said that his narrative and message is same of Founder of Pakistan, Mohammad Ali Jainnah. He once again lashed out at the armed forces, accusing them of being involved in political matters. ‘ Stop political engineering factories in agencies,” said the former prime minister.
Maryam Nawaz, Vice President, PML-N thanked Lahore’s residents for attending the public meeting in overwhelming way. She said Covid-18 (Imran Khan oath taking year 2018, as Prime Minister) brought quarantine for Wheat, Sugar, Rice, Medicines and other basic necessities of life due to historically mis-management and corruption in the history of Pakistan just in last over two years of Imran Khan led government.
She urged the people to wear masks because “I value and care for your life” but said that it was important to attend public meetings because Covid-18 was “more lethal than Covid-19”. The former prime minister’s daughter expressed grief that seven patients in Peshawar’s Khyber Teaching Hospital had died due to shortage in oxygen supply and question the PTI government’s performance in the health sector.
Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari in his address said that the country was suffering because of the “fake, incompetent and illegitimate government”. He insisted that the PDM’s “war is not for power but for the rights” of the people.
The PPP chief said that non-democratic forces termed as the establishment have been forming governments of their choice”. He said “Selectors, listen, you will have to listen to the public’s voice, you will have to accept their decision. He said that the time for dialogue is gone, now there will be a long march towards Capital Islamabad to oust Imran Khan led government.
PPP Chairman, Bilawal Bhutto said “Stop making phone calls, stop trying to establish contacts. No differences can be created between us, we will reach Islamabad and chase your puppet out. Once he is gone, then there can be dialogu”.
Maulana Fazal u Rahman said, “The wounds inflicted by the rigging done by the establishment for this illegal government, the dirty role they played [to sieze] this illegal power are getting deeper.” He said that he wanted to “alert and caution the defence forces and their leadership […] to move out of the people’s way and let them reach Islamabad”.
“In the coming days, I see anarchy in the country. We should handle matters before heading towards anarchy,”Maulana Fazal u Rahman said.
Jamiat Ulema-i-Pakistan’s (JUP) Awais Noorani, who was the first to address the crowd, told Prime Minister Imran Khan to submit his resignation and called upon PTI supporters to “rebel” against the ruling party.
Awami National Party Ameer Haider Khan Hoti also condemned the ruling PTI and said that about 80 years ago, Bacha Khan had started a non-violent struggle for his nation’s rights but he was termed as a traitor. Hoti declared that terrorism was “imposed upon the Pakhtun people” saying, “Pakhtun people were the ones who were killed and were defamed as well”. He added that there were “conspiracies” to lead Afghan peace talks towards failure and efforts to “create misunderstandings between Afghanistan and Pakistan”.
“I want to say that this is not our fight alone, this is of all of Pakistan’s,” he said. Hoti urged PDM leaders to stand by the Pakhtun people and vowed that he would continue to stand by the alliance for the “supremacy of the Parliament and Constitution and the respect for vote”.
Balochistan National Party-Mengal’s Sardar Akhtar Mengal started off his address by saying that the PDM public meetings were “funeral prayers of the dictators and the powers who, for 70 years, have treated the country’s Constitution as their slave”.
“I will only present a few drops of the blood flowing from our bodies and then you can decide if we are responsible for the distrubance in Balochistan today,” he said. He said that his party had been struggling against the khalayi makhlooq, against whom the people have gathered today.
“Who is responsible [for the cruelty and injustice over the past 70 years]? It is not them, but the politicians and [people of the] big province who have gathered in this venue today,” Mengal said. “Had you controlled this dragon from day one, it would not have become this uncontrollable monster. This genie that is out of the bottle, it is your responsibility to control it.”
Mehmood Khan Achakzai, Chairman, Pakhtunkhwa Milli Awami Party called for a “Turkey-like revolution” in Pakistan and urged Maryam, Bilawal and Rehman to spearhead the movement. He said that he was striving for a Pakistan where no ethnicity would be superior to the other.
Prof. Sajid Mir, Chief of Jamiat-i-Ahle Hadees said he wanted to “commend the participants for holding a grand and memorable public meeting in the shadow of Minar-i-Pakistan despite the difficulties” created by the government.
He said that the “new Pakistan’s government was in quarantine” and added that the “right to self govern should be returned to the public”.