KOT MITHAN : Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi Saturday advised the people to use their vote to elect a deserving party in upcoming general election in July this year, else they would have to repent for next five years.
“If we wasted our vote on petty issues, we will have to repent for five years as we have been repenting from 2008 to 2013. Have we forgotten the time when development work worth even a penny was not done across Pakistan? That government was also voted in by you. You also voted in (another) government in 2013. You have witnessed the difference,” the prime minister said addressing a public gathering after inaugurating Shaheed Benazir Bhutto Bridge over River Indus.
He was accompanied by Governor Punjab Muhammad Rafiq Rajwana, Minister for Water Resources Javed Ali Shah and other parliamentarians from the area.
Completed at cost of Rs 8 billion, the bridge would provide an important communication link across the Indus River between Zahirpur on G.T. Road (N-5) and Indus Highway (N-55) cities via Mithankot. The bridge is 1.2 kilometers long and 12.2 metres wide.
The bridge will greatly facilitate the traffic from Karachi, Kashmore etc on the Western side and Rahim Yar Khan, Bahawalpur, Multan, Faisalabad and Lahore on the Eastern side, being a short route from Karachi to Lahore.
The prime minister told the gathering that work on the bridge was started during the previous government but, like other projects, it was also left incomplete.
He said the bridge was located close to the Sukkur-Multan Motorway that would cost Rs 294 billion and reduce the distance from Kot Mithan to Lahore to four hours and seven hours to Karachi.
He said the motorway would not only ensure safe travel for the residents but also ease transportation of agriculture produce to the markets.
The prime minister also spoke high of Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif who had carried out massive development in the province, be it universities, schools, hospitals or roads.
He said the government had added 10,400 MW of electricity to national grid and the power plants, being installed to cope with country’s needs for next 20 years. “This could have been done in the past too. A dictator also ruled for 10 years but you will find no sign of it here,” he added.
He said only the democracy could guarantee the national development. Prime Minister Abbasi told the gathering that as the elections were approaching, many people would approach them with varying slogans and claims, but it was up to them to make a right decision.
He said South Punjab card was also used during last elections, though the Punjab Assembly had already passed a resolution for the purpose.
He said besides South Punjab, there was also a demand for Bahawalpur and other provinces and stressed the need for national dialogue to seek the solution.
He said two days ago, a national consensus was evolved to legislate the merger of FATA with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa that could also be replicated to resolve other national issues.
The prime minister said those who had arisen for South Punjab province, joined another political party within days and advised people, not to fall prey to any slogans.
He said such people should have waited for the end of government’s term as the deserters could never win respect among masses.
The prime minister said in July election, the people would have to chose between the politics of respect and development and that of abuses and mudslinging.
He told the gathering that the government had initially allocated Rs 400 million for 80-km log gas pipeline from Rojhan to Rajapnpur, Jampur and Muhammadpur but the work was halted after the Election Commission put ban on development projects ahead of elections.
To the public demand of a university in the area, the prime minister said the federal government had already formulated a policy to establish a university in every district and Rajanpur would also benefit from the same policy.