–Premier says inflation is now under control, prices of commodities will decrease soon
–Imran expresses his ‘heartfelt wish’ to see lasting peace in neighbouring Afghanistan
MOHMAND: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday said that the government will not increase gas and electricity tariffs anymore as inflation has finally come under control and soon the prices of commodities will decrease.
Addressing a huge public gathering after distributing Kafalat Cards among the deserving people under the Ehsaas Programme, he said, “I have decided not to increase the power tariff anymore because the people cannot afford that. In this regard, I have decided to take all possible measures to decrease power tariff.”
The prime minister said that the prices had surged in the past due to the contracts signed by the previous government, who had agreed at the purchase of power and gas at exorbitant prices.
“The incumbent government was helpless due to such unjustified contracts and the subsidies, provided by the government swelled the circular debt,” he added.
He said that the government would talk to the power producers and urge them to bring down the power prices and close down the plants which were producing costly electricity as additional burden could not be shifted to the people and industries.
Similarly, he said, due to the 15-year gas contract signed by the previous government, Pakistan was getting gas supply at higher rates in the world.
The premier told the gathering that the government had started rectifying the system to provide job opportunities to the people and bring down the inflation. “We have started rectifying the system now. Do not worry as difficult times have come to an end. 2019 was even more difficult for the people but inflation has been controlled and the prices of the commodities will come down,” he remarked.
Earlier, the prime minister commenced his address by condemning the ongoing atrocities against the Muslims in Indian Occupied Kashmir (IOK) and New Delhi.
He assured the eight million Kashmir Muslims living under lockdown by the Indian occupation forces that the entire Pakistani nation stood by them and prayed for their steadfastness. He said that he had been warning the world that if unchecked, the Narendra Modi’s Hindu supremacist agenda would lead to bloodshed and that has already happened in New Delhi.
He reiterated that the extremist ideology would not only target the Muslims but other communities, including Christians, Sikhs and Dalits.
PM Imran reiterated that all those who had created artificial inflation by hoarding the food commodities would be punished.
He said that the launch of the Kafalat Card in the Mohmand area was in pursuance of the principles of Medina State which took the responsibility of its poor people, including their education, health and employment.
Referring to the sacrifices rendered by the people of tribal areas, he said that even they were the main sufferers of the law and order situation in Karachi.
He congratulated the chief minister and governor of KP over the merger of tribal areas into KP and election in tribal areas as the elected representatives would highlight their issues at the parliament.
He told the gathering the government had selected Mohmand area for developing massive olive orchards to reduce the import bill for olive oil besides producing quality products. Besides, a marble industrial estate would be developed in Mohmand to create job opportunities and all the components of the Ehsaas Programme would be available for the people of Mohmand to uplift them, he added.
He also announced that a project for water supply from Mohmand Dam to the area would be executed. He tasked Murad Saeed to ensure the launch of 3G and 4G cellular services in the area.
He also expressed his heartfelt wish for lasting peace in war-torn Afghanistan, saying that stability in the neighbouring country would not only bring relief for the Afghan people but also for the residents of Pakistan’s tribal areas.
He acknowledged that the opening of the border would also lead to job creation. “Afghan people have been under extreme difficulties for the past 40 years. One war ends and another starts. The Americans came after the Russians left and then there was infighting,” he said.
“I hope that this peace accord succeeds as it will benefit the Afghan people as well as residents of our tribal areas,” he added.
The prime minister advised the people not to vote for a party with corrupt leaders as the country was not poor because of a shortage of resources but due to corrupt rulers.
In reference to the Sharif family, without explicitly naming them, the prime minister said that the entire family had fled abroad. He said that after he took up the Panama issue, he had faced multiple cases and six in the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) and had produced 40-year contracts and documents in his defence.
“Did I flee to London? Neither did I flee nor complained of victimisation. When someone does not commit corruption, he needs not to flee,” he added.