File Photo
File Photo
(Photo by Rizwan TABASSUM / AFP)

Shaken up by the third rally of the 11-party joint alliance -- the Pakistan Democratic Movement--in Quetta, the Pakistan government on Sunday hit back at the PDM, stating that it will not allow anyone to save their "looted assets" under the guise of a struggle for democracy.

Addressing the media after the rally, Information Minister Shibli Faraz on Sunday declared that "no one is above the state".

"Pakistan Democratic Movement's (PDM) stance mirrors that of Pakistan's enemies," he said, adding that Prime Minister Imran Khan's policy is to rid the country of corrupt elements.

Speaking about the PDM's rally in Balochistan's capital, he said that "thugs" have set their camp in Quetta today.

Faraz further slammed the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) supremo Nawaz Sharif and said that a person, who has been declared an absconder by the court, addressed the rally.

Condemning the PDM's call for an "azaad (free) Balochistan", he said that the government would take action against Nawaz Sharif and others.

"It would have been better had the PDM discussed the blasphemous French cartoons," he said, lamenting that the Opposition had not shed "enough" light on the matter.

It was the third power show of the 11-party opposition alliance PDM and similar rallies were held in past in Karachi and Gujranwala.

PDM president Maulana Fazlur Rehman was also in attendance at the rally in Ayub Stadium, along with other political leaders who are part of the alliance.

Pakistan Muslim League (N) (PML-N) vice president Maryam Nawaz in her speech said that the time has come to change the fate of Pakistan -- and Balochistan.

"No longer will husbands and brothers go missing, people of Balochistan," she said addressing the attendees.

The former premier's daughter told the crowd that Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah, in one of his speeches at Staff College, Quetta, had stated that policymaking is the job of civilians and had instructed serving officers of the state to abide by their oaths.

Pakistan Peoples Party Chairperson Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, who is in Gilgit-Baltistan for the upcoming elections in the region, addressed the participants via video link. "Will Balochistan's people always be neglected?" asked the PPP leader. "No matter which province, people want freedom and a democratic government. They want freedom from poverty and unemployment, to be able to think for themselves and breathe." JUI-F chief Fazlur Rehman, who was the last to address the rally, condemned the arrest of PML-N leader Safdar and the 'detention' of MNA Mohsin Dawar at the Quetta airport, saying that the latter incident was "contrary to Balochistan's traditions".

Rehman insisted that he was not against institutions but "when they impose martial law on Pakistan or when they back a fake government, it is our right to complain and protest".

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Free Press Journal

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