Sunday Oct 17, 2021
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Democratic Movement chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman on Sunday announced that within the next two weeks, the Opposition will hold countrywide protests against the growing inflation.
"As soon as we are done with the celebrations of the Eid Milad un Nabi (SAW), we will start a full-fledged campaign against inflation," he said while speaking to the media after holding an informal meeting with PDM members at his residence.
The former prime minister and PML-N leader Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, Chairman Pashtoonkhwa Milli Awami Party Mehmood Achakzai, and Secretary-General of the Jamiat Ulema-e-Pakistan Awais Noorani attended the meeting, where the leaders consulted over launching campaigns against the federal government and inflation, sources said.
"We appeal to the entire nation to fully participate in the protests and rallies," he said while giving details of how the government incurred debts and increased inflation in the country.
Earlier in the day, PML-N President and Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly Shahbaz Sharif had a telephonic conversation with Fazl and announced that the Opposition will start a campaign against the rising inflation in the country.
Taking to its official Twitter account, the PML-N confirmed that Shahbaz and Fazl criticised the government's policies during the phone call and have decided to launch a full-fledged campaign against "the worst inflation in the country's history".
The two leaders agreed to join anti-government protests of other Opposition parties.
During the phone call, Shahbaz told Fazl that leaders need to get out of their homes to "save the nation from inflation, unemployment, and the ongoing economic catastrophe across the country".
The two leaders confirmed that to protest against the "historic" inflation, there will be demonstrations, rallies, and marches across the country.
Earlier in the day, criticising the PTI-led government, Shahbaz said that with the country already battling inflation, negotiations with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) have also failed.
"After the failure of the talks with the IMF, the government should revert the hike in prices," Shahbaz demanded.
He questioned the government's monetary policy and said: "Despite accepting all the conditions laid down by the IMF, talks with the body still failed. What sort of a strategy is this?"
He said that the PTI government's "three years of blind obedience to the IMF" could reap no benefits because the people continued to suffer the whole while.
"The government could achieve nothing."
Shahbaz said that the government "deceived the masses and also tricked the IMF".
"This government has been seeing to the economic murder of people for the last three years," he said in the statement, adding that the government should explain why it had to increase the prices of electricity, gas, petrol, flour, and sugar.
"The government should also let the nation know what talks were held with the IMF," he said.
Shahbaz said that when the PML-N government, led by Nawaz Sharif, completed the IMF's programme in 2015, "Imran Niazi continued to criticise him".
"Imran Niazi used to chant slogans that he would rather commit suicide than going to the IMF," Shahbaz recalled.