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PPP Chairman Bilawal plans to ‘play long innings’

07 Mar, 2022
PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari while addressing a public gathering in Gujranwala. Photo via Twitter/@MediaCellPPP
PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari while addressing a public gathering in Gujranwala. Photo via Twitter/@MediaCellPPP

Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari has said that Prime Minister Imran Khan would flee London, whereas he will stay with the people of Pakistan. “I am just in my beginning and have plans to play long innings.”

While addressing the party workers in Lahore’s Nasir Bagh, he said: “We want free and fair elections in the country. For this purpose, the ‘puppet’ Imran Khan is needed to be ousted. In his presence, transparent elections cannot be held.”

He said Pakistan People’s Party will launch a ‘democratic attack’ on the ‘undemocratic’ government after reaching Islamabad. The PPP will then introduce election reforms and conduct free and fair elections in the country, he added. He expressed his gratitude to the people of Lahore for giving him a warm welcome to the march and said the slogan of ‘bread, cloth, and house’ had also started. “Lahore belongs to the PPP and the PPP belongs to Lahore,” he added.

He also expressed his admiration for the ‘Jiyalas’ of Lahore and said that the Jiyalas of Lahore were the bravest and the most loyal. He also recalled his late mother, Benazir Bhutto, and said that she was the voice of women, youths and deprived segments of society. He also stated that Benazir was an ‘unarmed girl’ who challenged the dictators and terrorists. He maintained that the ‘puppet’ announced a decrease in petrol prices because he was afraid of the Jiyalas, adding that Imran Khan deceived youths the most.

“I am also a youth, and only a youth can understand the problems of youths,” Bilawal said and added that the PPP would introduce a standard education system in the country.

The PPP chairman stressed that it was the government’s responsibility to provide a livelihood to the people. He maintained that the PPP had provided livelihood to the people and ensured economic progress. He also pointed out that only an elected person could solve public problems, adding that the ‘selected’ got no solution to the people’s problems because he always looked at the umpire’s finger.

He further said that the PPP workers have rendered great services and sacrifices for the party. The PPP is just like a family. Those who left the family mistakenly finally came back.

After the address, the PPP’s long march stopped briefly in front of Sheikh Ali Hajveri (RA) shrine, commonly known as Data Darbar, where Bilawal and other PPP leaders made a ‘dua’ while standing on the container. The participants of the long march also participated in ‘dua’.

The march then started its journey towards its next stop Muridke where Bilawal will address the party workers.

Earlier, Bilawal reached the residence of former SAPM Nadeem Afzal Chan in Lahore along with other PPP leaders.

Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto said that he could not guarantee 100 percent success for the no-trust move against the incumbent government.

Speaking during a presser after Nadeem Afzal Chan joined PPP, Bilawal Bhutto said that bringing a no-trust move is a difficult task and he could not guarantee its 100 percent success.

“If we succeed, it will be a great achievement but even if we fail, I will not back down and continue my struggle,” the PPP chairman said and demanded of the Prime Minister Imran Khan to resign from his post.

The PPP chairman while delivering a ‘deadline’ to the prime minister, asked Imran Khan to tender his resignation before the tabling of a no-confidence motion against him in the National Assembly. Bilawal said that the government was under immense pressure these days. He issued a deadline to the premier asking him to step down before the tabling of the no-trust motion. He asked PM Khan to dissolve assemblies if he had confidence in people. “The prime minister has already threatened to dissolve assemblies,” Bilawal said and added: “He should do it right now.”

Hitting out at the premier, the PPP chairman said that the nation had been listening to Khan Sahib’s rhetoric for the last three years, adding that he was in the habit of taking ‘U-turn’ on every issue. He was of the view that no-confidence was a mega test for the government.

He said if Imran Khan did not resign from the premiership then they would bring a no-confidence motion against him after reaching Islamabad.

The PPP chief said though it (no-trust move) was a difficult task but they would have to work hard on it and try it.

“At the time of no-confidence motion, it will be revealed who stays neutral and who backs the move,” he said meaningfully, adding that he believed that government did not enjoy the confidence of the majority in the House; rather the majority had been imposed.

Bilawal said that whatever decisions the joint opposition took, the PPP would accept that.

On this occasion, Chan said that his decision to defect to the PTI was a mistake. Bilawal; however, welcomed him back to the party fold.

It may be mentioned here that Chan resigned from the post of Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Parliamentary Coordination. In Oct 2017, Nadeem resigned from the post of Secretary-General of PPP Punjab and joined PTI. He contested the general elections on the party ticket from NA-88 (Sargodha -I), but lost the contest. His brother Gulraiz Afzal Chan is currently a PTI member of the Punjab Assembly from the PP-68 constituency of Malakwal.

The PPP chairman spent the night at Bilawal House, Lahore and then went to the residence of Nadeem Afzal Chun where he had his breakfast.

PPP Senator Sherry Rehman wrote in her tweet posted on Sunday: “Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari’s Awami March is proving to be a game changer. From Karachi to Lahore the public support and enthusiastic response is wonderful and amazing. Public participation is increasing with each passing day and city. Bilawal Bhutto and the PPP have once again proved to be a real party of people.

The story was originally published in Business Recorder on March 7, 2022.