LAHORE - Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif vowed to continue protesting against power outages until the end of load shedding. The CM was talking to the media during his visit to Bahawalpur where he oversaw the construction work on a 400 bed hospital.
Shahbaz said his protest against load shedding was a demand of the time whereas his decision of shifting his office to a tent at the Minar-e-Pakistan reflected the continuation of his past record.
He vowed that he and his cabinet will continue to work in camps at the Minar-e-Pakistan until the end of the discrimination that Punjab had experienced with regard to the excessive power outages and gas load shedding. He reiterated he would not rest till all the provinces were provided an equal share of electricity. He said he was not scoring political points by working for the betterment of the people.
He claimed that under the 18th amendment, no province had the prerogative of producing electricity and that the federal government was wrong when it said the provinces were allowed to generate their own electricity.
He said the bias of the federal government against Punjab had been manifested in the worst electricity and gas load shedding in the country’s history that has made the lives of people miserable while damaging the economy which had led the Punjab government to loose Rs 400 billion during the past year. He said hundreds of thousands of workers had become jobless.
He said the reference sent by President Zardari to the National Assembly regarding the provinces of Bahawalpur and Multan was based on hypocrisy and were a set of lies.
He reiterated that the protest against President Zardari will continue despite his ongoing conspiracies.
He claimed that the federal government received billions of rupees as kickbacks by selling fertilisers on high rates.
Sharif also challenged his criticisers and challenged them to criticise his services during the floods and the dengue outbreak. Earlier, provincial Minister Iqbal Chunter and other MPAs welcomed the CM at the Bahawalpur Airport, after which the CM directly went to the construction site.
The CM said delays in the completion of the project will not be tolerated and that he would personally monitor the standard of work on the hospital.
He informed that the hospital, built at a cost of Rs 4.25 billion, will be inaugurated on August 14. However, on the arrival of the chief minister, the local paramedical staff and APCCA employees protested outside the camp office for the acceptance of their demands.