Sunday Apr 11, 2021
KARACHI: Minister for Interior Sheikh Rasheed on Sunday said "democracy won" in the Daska by-election, where the PML-N's Nosheen Iftikhar defeated the PTI's Asjad Ali Malhi a day earlier.
The minister said it was a "defeat" for everyone who misjudged PM Imran Khan's vote bank in Daska, since the PTI candidate was defeated by a thin margin.
"We won even though we lost, in the Daska by-election," said the minister. "We are proud that Imran Khan has a [sizable] vote bank in Daska till this day," he added.
He said the large amount of votes polled by Asjad Ali Malhi in the Daska by-election were proof of "Imran Khan's narrative being alive".
Summarising the results of the NA-75 by-election, Rasheed said "wrestlers enter the ring [to contest] but only one emerges the winner".
Praising the prime minister, Rasheed said he is fighting a battle against all mafias in the country. "Imran Khan is trying to put a stop to those who are involved in looting and plunder," he said.
Speaking about the issues of inflation and other problems plaguing the country, Rasheed said PM Imran Khan is monitoring inflation in the country himself on a daily basis.
He lashed out at the Opposition, saying it was the PTI's "luck" that it had to deal with such an inept Opposition, referring to the Pakistan Democratic Movement's (PDM) internal conflicts.
Rasheed spoke about the Sindh government and the MQM-P, saying that the Centre will continue to involve the provincial government in all important matters.
Responding to Murad Ali Shah's recent criticism that the federal government does not call a meeting of the Council of Common Interests (CCI) frequently, he said misunderstandings occur frequently but talks with Sindh government will continue.
"Who says we are not ready to talk," he asked. Referring to the Opposition, he said: "Talk to us about electoral reforms and other stuff, we are willing to engage with you. However, unfortunately, due to various programmes on media, misunderstandings arise."
The minister spoke about the MQM-P as well, saying that he harboured good relations with the party. He said the prime minister will ultimately take the decision on whether or not the party's sealed offices can be reopened or not.
He said some people were running an organised campaign against Mirza Shahzad Akbar, Advisor to the Prime Minister on Interior and Accountability.
"Shahzad Akbar is overseeing the cases on money laundering and against the sugar mafia," he said. "The Federal Investigation Agency reports to me but I am letting Shehzad Akbar do whatever he is doing," he added.