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We will work together to save Pakistan: Bilawal Bhutto

02 July, 2018

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KARACHI: Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari Sunday said that his party will fulfill all promises made with the people in the election manifesto announced last week.

“We have to save Pakistan. We will work together to save Pakistan,” the PPP chief told a public rally in Lyari, from where his is contesting the upcoming general election, the first of his political career. “The people of Lyari have given many sacrifices for democracy and Benazir Bhutto. I am confident that people of Lyari will also support me in my mission,” he hoped.

Bilawal remarked that his political struggle is starting from Lyari, adding that this is his first election but it will be the last for many a politician. He said that he is fully aware of the countless problems faced by the people of Lyari. “No other than me can work towards solving your problems,” he said. “PPP has always stood by the underprivileged,” he added.

Bilawal remarked that he is ready to turn seawater into drinkable water to ensure the provision of adequate water to the people of Lyari. “We will ensure provision of water for all,” he said, adding that the party will also give interest-free loans to women from the underprivileged backgrounds.

Bilawal said that his party launched Benazir Income Support Programme (BISP) to support the poor families. He said their upcoming program to alleviate hunger by providing food items at subsidized rates will be run by the women of Lyari. “I will implement a program through which people will receive basic facilities on subsidized rates,” he announced.

Bilawal visited several places in Lyari, gesturing to people while standing through the sunroof of his vehicle in a scene reminiscent of his mother’s campaign. He said that he will not be deterred by violent elements who were trying to scare the PPP workers. “I am Shaheed Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto’s son, who was one of the bravest souls in Pakistan. Lyari is in my blood. I will go to every nook and corner of the country with my party’s manifesto. We have to defeat these violent elements … not give in to them. I will not be scared into submission by such forces,” he said.

While Bilawal was on a visit to Lyari, a handful of gangsters and criminals tried to violently disrupt his rally. “Unfortunately, an episode designed expressly to disrupt his visit took place when party workers were attacked by around 15-20 people brandishing sticks and pelting stones,” a statement issued by the PPP chairman’s spokesman said. “The onus of protecting the candidates and ensuring that the peace prevails falls upon the caretaker setup. They have failed in their responsibility to do so,” said Senator Mustafa Nawaz Khokhar.

“The LEAs present there refused to act and stood as mere bystanders while the stone pelting continued. The media wrongly reported it as a protest against the PPP while we believe that it was done deliberately to create an atmosphere of fear to create hurdles in the way of a peaceful election. Our workers showed immense restraint despite great provocation. Forces of violence and political parties that thrive on conflict tried their best to deter us but failed spectacularly,” he added.

Senator Khokhar expressed shock at total media blackout of PPP chairman’s campaign trail following the unfortunate incident in Lyari. “Bilawal visited Memon Society Chowk, Gharib Shah Road and Ghanchi Para among other places in his constituency and later returned to the place where the incident had taken place to be received by his workers in a charged environment,” he said.

“This media blackout is an indication that only negative stories related to the PPP are being played up. Not just that but it seems there is also a sinister move to deprive other political parties of their due coverage except one party. An environment is being created to benefit one ‘ladla’ party,” Senator Khokhar said.

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