Pakistan's future linked to democracy: PM Gilani
27 May, 2012
ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani on Saturday said there would be no martial law in the country, as its future is linked to democracy.
In an interview with a private TV channel, the PM said that the PPP leadership had rendered sacrifices for the restoration of democracy, judiciary and the media.
"We would continue the mission of Benazir Bhutto, and no one could dare to impose emergency in the country," he said.
He said the government was confronting various challenges due to global recession, high oil prices, two floods and war on terror, and "all these challenges adversely affected the economy. But despite that, the government is trying to give incentive to its people".
About the incentives in the upcoming budget, he said that there would be no new taxes, power sector would get top priority, 100,000 jobs would be created and the BISP programme would be expanded in both the urban and rural areas.
To a question, he said the president had immunity, and it had been given by parliament. "If I did not write the letter [to Swiss authorities] that means I am protecting the constitution."
He said parliament had given the president, prime minister and foreign minister immunity according to Vienna Convention.
Referring to his association with journalism, as he did his masters in journalism from the Punjab University, he said, "I take media criticism as an advice."
To a question, he said, the PPP government had sent the case of former prime minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto to the Supreme Court to rectify its mistake.
To another question, he said, "Pakistan is passing through evolution and all the institutions are also passing through the same evolutionary process, and every institution is making efforts to expand its sphere." He said that everything would be all right with the passage of time.
He said, "If the 1973 Constitution had not been enforced in the country, I would be worried. After the Fall of Dhaka, if the present Pakistan is still intact, it is due to the 1973 Constitution."
On the question to file an appeal against the decision of the Supreme Court, the PM said he had consulted with the legal experts and party leaders on this issue, and consensus had been developed that "we should not go for an appeal".
Quoting the example of the case of former US president Bill Clinton, the PM said Clinton was charged with an allegation, his licence was also cancelled, there was a penalty on him, but he continued his tenure.
He said even Nawaz Sharif was fined for overspeeding on the motorway, and he remained a convicted prime minister for nine years. "He was also sentenced for moral turpitude in hijacking case."
On the question whether the court treated him differently from Nawaz Sharif, the PM said, "definitely", adding that he felt that the interpretation of the SC ruling was being done by the "Sahrif courts".