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Elections won't be delayed: Zardari

15 November, 2012

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MALAKWAL: President Asif Ali Zardari said on Wednesday that general elections would be held on time and they would be "completely free, transparent and fair in all manners".

Addressing the 'Eid Milan Party', the president said that all necessary measures had been adopted, including preparation of genuine voter lists, to hold elections in a free and fair manner.

Zardari said democracy was the only way to take the country forward towards progress and prosperity. He urged all political parties to work for strengthening democracy.

He said Pakistan was a democratic state and stressed that no country could dare to damage its integrity.

"If someone thinks of destabilising Pakistan, he has a wrong insight," he said and added that the country with its power rested in its people could not be weakened.

Zardari said democracy in the country still had some shortcomings and stressed that there was a need to rectify the problems with a collective political vision.

He welcomed political forces across the country to sit with the government at some discussion platform and give their input on policies for the betterment of people.

The president urged political parties not to stretch their difference too far and demonstrate tolerance and accommodation. He said there is need to strengthen political parties as "only then we can put the country on the road to progress and prosperity". The president said the PPP is working to turn Pakistan into a state that can meet challenges of the 21st century.

The president said that although the PML-N had parted ways with PPP, it did not mean that the two had become enemies.

Zardari said that he had delegated his powers to parliament "which was unprecedented in the country's history". He said history would prove that the decision was correct.

He said that history turned in support of PPP, adding that the verdict of Supreme Court in Asghar Khan case also proved that Benazir Bhutto had rightly pointed that the "results of general election were snatched from her".

He said that after Benazir's death, he had pledged to take the party forward and continue the "caravan of Garhi Khuda Bukhsh" ahead.

Zardari said he desires that every child in the country enjoy his rights with equality.

"I want that the child of a poor enjoys the same rights as the child of an industrialist," he said.

The president said those who are hatching conspiracies against democracies will never succeed in their nefarious designs as the whole nation and political leadership stands united to save the country.

The president said his earlier plan to meet the people of Mandi Bahauddin soon after Eid could not be materialised due to unavoidable reasons. He also wished the gathering happy Eid and said people of the area had the every reason to be happy for the development programme he had announced for them.

Speaking on the occasion, Federal Minister Nazar Muhammad Gondal said the PPP government always braved national challenges with prudent policies under the leadership of President Zardari. He said President Zardari, through his acumen, had proved that only he could lead the country towards progress.

Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan Affairs Minister Mian Manzoor Wattoo said President Zardari had always upheld the national integrity and delegated his powers to the office of prime minister.

Pakistan Baitul Maal Chairman Zamurd Khan paid tributes to the PPP leadership, saying that sacrifices rendered by PPP leaders were a source of inspiration for the coming generations.

PPP leader Nadeem Afzal Chan said the people of Mandi Bahauddin kept the party intact even during the difficult phase of dictatorship. He said the PPP had a strong manifesto aimed at the welfare of masses.

President Zardari earlier announced several development projects for district Mandi Bahauddin.

Information and Broadcasting Minister Qamar Zaman Kaira, Water and Power Minister Chaudhry Ahmad Mukhtar and National Regulations and Services Minister Firdaus Ashiq Awan were also present on the occasion.

End.

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