Information Minister Shibli Faraz on Sunday said PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif has driven the Opposition’s politics “into a blind alley.” Faraz said the PML-N was misleading the masses and pursuing a narrative that had nothing to do with reality.
“They have done nothing for the country, except pursuing anti-people policies,” he said. “They entered into costly energy contracts with foreign companies that had led to a surge in gas and power rates,” Faraz said in a press conference.
The information minister said the PML-N had deliberately ruined the country’s economy to create hurdles in the way of the next government.
Shedding light on the country’s economy, he said that the PTI government had inherited a current account deficit of $20 billion and a debt of Rs30 trillion.
The information minister said that the PTI government had reserved Rs2.9tr in the budget to pay off the interest of the loans taken by the previous regimes. Faraz reiterated that the “PML-N government had wasted $23 billion to artificially control the dollar’s value”.
The minister said that the country’s exports and remittances are on an upward trajectory and foreign exchange reserves are now in a comfortable zone. “We have collected around Rs1tr in taxes during this quarter, which is above the target.”
Talking about the Opposition’s statement on the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, he said: “CPEC is a reflection of [the] historic friendship between Islamabad and Beijing […] The Opposition should refrain from harming the fraternal ties between the two countries by politicking on CPEC projects.”
Faraz sasid that the incumbent government was committed to complete CPEC’s projects “at the earliest”.
Shibli accused former prime minister Nawaz Sharif of “blackmailing Pakistan and its institutions” in order to get relief from the corruption cases against him.
“You (Nawaz) were elected by this country thrice and now you are going against it just because you want relief from your cases? You are blinded, you want to take revenge from the masses. You want to blackmail Pakistan and its institutions. This will not happen,” Faraz said.
The information minister further said that the PML-N supremo had not “gotten along” with any of the institutions.
“You want judges like Justice Qayum. You have never gotten along with any army chief, from [retired Gen] Janjua to now. This is what you do: you destabilise democracy. You are responsible,” Faraz declared and went on to say that the former prime minister was a “product” who came to power through the support of the establishment. The minister said that the incumbent government had a good relationship with the army because it was “full of honest people”.
The PML-N leader, Faraz added, was criticising the chairperson of the National Accountability Bureau, who was appointed by Nawaz himself. “Now you have become a revolutionary, [acting] like you are statesman. You are accused of theft! You were not sent to jail because of any political dispute, [it was because] of the crimes you committed,” the minister said.