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Nawaz warns of long march for people's rights

17 August, 2011

LAHORE: President PML (N) Nawaz Sharif and Punjab CM Shahbaz Sharif handing over allotment letter of a house to a man through Ashyana Housing Scheme.
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LAHORE: PML-N President Nawaz Sharif has said the provision of shelter to the shelterless is a big achievement of Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif. The project started by him for the poor will be extended and the time will come when every Pakistani will have his own house.

He was addressing a ceremony for the distribution of allotment letters to the lucky recipients of houses allotted to them through transparent balloting in the first Aashiyana Housing Project at Saroba Atari on Tuesday. Nawaz Sharif was the chief guest on the occasion. CM's senior adviser Sardar Zulfiqar Khosa, Senator Pervaiz Rashid, Zafar Iqbal Jhagra, Mushahidullah Khan, MNAs, MPAs, provincial ministers, columnists, intellectuals and a large number of people were present on the occasion.

Nawaz said the nation is divided into two classes. He said on the one hand there is a segment of people who only put their signatures on files in offices and get a house from the national exchequer while on the other there are workers, labourers, cultivators and marginalised persons who do not have even a two-marla house. He said it is the responsibility of the state to safeguard the rights of the poor. He said the PML-N started welfare projects for poor people in every tenure.

He said a project was started for the provision of five lakh houses under 'Mera Ghar Scheme' but Musharraf immediately after coming to power sold all the plots at a throwaway price and no one has held him accountable. He said besides 'Mera Ghar Scheme' in the last tenure of the PML-N, lands were also distributed among landless cultivators in Sindh, Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa while proprietary rights were granted to lakhs of dwellers of Katchi Abadis.

He said yellow cabs were also given during this period and the same welfare projects are still continuing in Punjab. He said Shahbaz Sharif has started Aashiyana housing scheme for the poor and lakhs of people would become owners of houses through these schemes by the next general elections. He said he will safeguard the rights of the people and will even go to the extent of a long march for this purpose if needed.

He said Pakistan is not for only a few but 18 crore people. He said rights will be granted to the people at their doorstep. He said the promise made to the people on August 14 will be honoured and the destiny of Pakistan will be changed through collective efforts. A time will come when Pakistan will become a prosperous country and every effort will be made for this purpose, he added.

Punjab Land Development Company Chairman Sh Allauddin threw light on the Aashiyana housing project. Earlier, PML-N chief Nawaz Sharif and Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif inspected houses of the housing scheme and later they gave allotment letters to the lucky recipients.

Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif said the PML-N has not only realised the dream of Nawaz Sharif by providing houses to the poor, labourers, widows and deprived persons under Aashiyana Housing Project but also translated the vision of Quaid-i-Azam and Allama Iqbal into reality. He said by providing shelter to the shelterless, a feeling has been promoted among them that they are as much Pakistanis as anyone else. He said Aashiyana Housing Project is free of corruption and a living proof of the transparent policy of the Punjab government.

He said he is ready to face any punishment if any irregularity is proved in the project. He said in addition to Lahore, work is also in progress expeditiously on Aashiyana housing schemes in six other districts. He said Aashiyana housing schemes will be started in 18 other districts this year and the scope of the project will be extended to the whole province.

The chief minister said even better civic amenities than the residential colonies of the rich have been provided in Aashiyana housing schemes, which is the abode of the common and poor Pakistanis. He said had such schemes been started 64 years ago, the situation of the country would have been different. Chief Minister said Aashiyana Housing Project is closely linked with August 14 and this is the most transparent and corruption-free project in the history of the country.

The allotees of the first Aashiyana Housing Scheme paid tributes to the PML-N leadership. They said both PML-N President Nawaz Sharif and Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif feel the pain of the poor. They said may Allah Almighty give such courageous rulers to the country as they could put the country on the road to progress. A widow Rehana Iqbal, who got a house in the Aashiyana Housing Scheme, said it is the desire of everyone to have a house of his own. She said she cannot even think of having her own house but the chief minister has materialised her dream.

Muhammad Nauman said due to financial constraints, he could not even imagine having his own house in Lahore but Shahbaz Sharif has given him a house and he prays for him from the core of his heart. Another allotee, Rang Elahi said the slogan of 'roti, kapra aur makan' was raised by someone else but Shahbaz has materialised it.

End.

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