Nawaz vows clean sweep of 2018 elections

People to take revenge of my disqualification in polls
Our Correspondent


The former prime minister, Nawaz Sharif, on Sunday vowed to clean sweep the upcoming general elections, reiterating his claim that he had been removed from office for pursuing an agenda of development and progress.
The PML-N chief and his daughter Maryam Nawaz addressed a large gathering of supporters her at Company Bagh, where both claimed the former premier was “punished” for serving the people.
Nawaz took on both the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf and the PPP claiming none of his opponents had ever undertaken a single development project. “Ask the PPP, ask the blue-eyed boy’s (ladla) party,” he said in a veiled reference to PTI chief Imran Khan.
He expressed hope that those talking about the umpire’s finger — another veiled reference to Khan, who famously during his party’s 2014 sit-in had said the “umpire was about to raise his finger” — would face a defeat in the 2018 election.
“We have already bid the PPP goodbye, and now the time has come to see off the people who talk about the umpire’s finger,” he added.
Nawaz said he has not seen a bigger public rally in Sheikhupura, adding that it seems from today’s crowd that they will “surpass Lodhran” in the next general elections.
“You have welcomed a disqualified prime minister today,” he said, asking the party supporters if he is in fact ‘disqualified’. Nawaz complained that he wasn’t allowed to complete his five-year tenure despite being elected for that time period by the people.
Praising the “transformation of Lahore” by Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif, Nawaz criticised the Pakistan People’s Party and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf for neglecting development.
The three-time premier said he is scared of no one but God, vowing that he will change the country’s destiny with the help of the people.
The country will be in extreme danger if the things that have been happening for the past 70 years are allowed to continue, he added.
Taking out local currency of various denominations, from Rs1,000 to Rs10, Nawaz challenged his detractors to prove any corruption against him.
“Now ask those who disqualified me why they did what they did,” Nawaz told the PML-N supporters. “Nawaz is not one to panic in times of trouble,” he said, explaining that ‘they’ are out to get him.
Concluding his address, the former premier urged supporters to take revenge by voting for PML-N in the upcoming general elections.
Nawaz said that he would never disappoint the nation and would always serve the country with the same spirit as he has been working in the past.
The president of the Pakistan Muslim League–N challenged that nobody can prove that he received any bribe, even as smallest amount as ten rupees. Nawaz Sharif maintained that Peshawar and Karachi had been ruined by the PTI and PPP.
“The country had been touching new highs of progress, when they ousted Nawaz Sharif because he eliminated terrorism, load shedding, and started work on China-Pakistan Economic Corridor,” he said adding that the PML-N government led by him had secured foreign investment of $56 billion in the country.
“I ask why was I ousted. Do you people realise the reason behind my ouster?” he asked, and then responded to his own question, saying that he knew he had been disqualified as ‘punishment’ for making motorways in the 1990s, for making Pakistan a nuclear power and then pushing an agenda of development.
Nawaz’s daughter, Maryam, took the stage before her father asking whether his supporters agreed with the Supreme Court’s decision to disqualify him as prime minister.
“This is not just a case against Nawaz Sharif, it is a case against each person who voted for him,” she said. “Despite your votes, Nawaz Sharif was not allowed to finish his term. This has happened with him thrice, not just one time,” she added.
“Each time he was ousted by those who wish to put a stop to your votes,” she claimed. “The same happened in 1999, from 2000 to 2010, and from 2017 to 2018. Will the same spectacle be allowed to keep happening, or will you do something about it?” she asked the energetic crowd.
“Why does this happen with Nawaz Sharif each time? I know why it happens. Because whenever he comes to power, he serves you. He provides you power, he builds motorways, hospitals, universities, the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor. And in return, he receives your affection. This is the punishment handed to Nawaz Sharif for this each time. And in 40 years, I have only seen your love for him increase,” she added.
Addressing the rally, Maryam Nawaz congratulated the party workers for arranging a successful rally. “I have brought Nawaz’s case to your court today,” said Maryam, asking the crowd if they agree with Nawaz’s disqualification.
Maryam lamented that every time, Nawaz was removed from office in questionable ways. “Will you do something or let this circus continue,” she asked the gathering, adding that the same has happened with every elected prime minister of the country.
She also questioned the neutrality of judges who “speak against Nawaz and then sit on the bench hearing his case”.
Recalling the high-jacking case against Nawaz after General Pervez Musharraf’s military takeover in 1999, Maryam said: “I said to the judge back then as well that he should beware of God’s wrath”.
In a veiled reference to the Supreme Court’s powers of intervention, she asked where does Artice 184 (3) of the Constitution [which empowers Supreme Court’s intervention in public welfare/human rights issues] disappear when military governments are formed.

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