Sunday Feb 05, 2023
Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) Senior Vice-President and Chief Organiser Maryam Nawaz has launched a fresh spate of criticism against Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan during the party workers' convention in Multan.
In her address on Sunday, the PML-N stalwart said the party’s “leadership feels the pain of the people who are suffering the brunt of economic challenges”.
“But we all know the reason behind this inflation. The Pakistani nation knows this very well,” Maryam said, censuring the previous Imran Khan-led government without taking any names.
Speaking about the injustices meted out to her family — particularly her father and PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif — Maryam said: “Allah and the nation gave the government to Nawaz Sharif thrice. The first time, he was sent home in two-and-a-half years, the second time he was sent home in three years, while the last time he was thrown out of the office within four years [of rule] for not taking a salary from his son. But you all are witness to how Pakistan progressed whenever Nawaz Sharif was in power.”
While talking about the massive rise in inflation, the scion of the Sharif political dynasty said the increase in commodity prices is a result of the agreement that Imran Khan signed with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) during his tenure which he later violated.
“Today, the IMF tells us that we will not listen to you because of the way Imran Khan betray us. They insist on increasing the prices and then paying us the loan money. If we listen to the IMF, then inflation goes up, and if we don’t then Pakistan comes to the brink of default.”
Maryam went on to say that the "government’s hands are tied due to the IMF agreement". “We received a desolate Pakistan in 2022. Nawaz Sharif will pull Pakistan out of [desolation] this time, too, as he has always done.”
At the same time, she asked the nation to remain courageous. “It will take time, but we will be out of these challenges.
Taking a dig at Imran Khan with regard to his claim on the Toshakhana gifts, the PML-N chief organiser said: “The watch stealer has not only stolen the watch. In fact, he has wreaked havoc from one corner to another. He fixed his home’s economy and ruined the country’s.”
Taking a jibe at the PTI chairman’s Jail Bharo movement call, she said Khan had been running the Jaib Bharo movement for four years when he was the country’s prime minister.
A day earlier, the PTI chief — whose government was ousted in the wake of a no-confidence motion last spring — asked his workers and supporters to prepare for the "Jail Bharo" movement across the country.
Khan’s call came in the wake of sedition cases filed against his party's Senior Vice-President Fawad Chaudhry and former member of the National Assembly Shandana Gulzar, while Senator Azam Swati and Shahbaz Gill were booked earlier for speaking against the military.
Commenting on the arrests and cases filed against members of the PTI as well as Sheikh Rashid, Maryam said they had been “crying like children”.
“We spent five years and five months in jail with a smile, and they cried for five days of imprisonment.”
She also commented on how former army chief General (retd) Qamar Javed Bajwa realised a “blunder like Imran Khan” was made by him. “Now the confession is not enough. The stain on the country and nation’s heads will have to be removed. This blunder must be thrown away from the country.”
Meanwhile, on Kashmir Solidarity Day today, the PML-N senior leader saluted the struggle of Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir’s (IIOJK) people who have been resisting the injustices on them.
“One day Kashmir will be Pakistan,” she said while acknowledging the sacrifices of Kashmiri mothers and daughters.