Opposition accuses govt of failing to protect people

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari has condemned the violence in Lahore and other parts of the country.

He expressed grief over the loss of lives, including those of our policemen and civilians, which he claimed was the consequence of the sitting government’s inability to handle the situation peacefully.

Responding to the situation in the country, the PPP chairman said that the shedding of human blood and incitement to violence was never the answer to any situation because history informs us that violence only begets more violence.

“The real fight is about fighting against the root of the festering problem, not in just responding to the symptoms. Why has the selected government not bothered to implement the National Action Plan, or even discuss arising challenges in parliament?” he asked.

He pointed out that the tendency to foster and coddle pressure groups through instigating ethnic, religious and sectarian hatred had begun during Zia’s regime, to squeeze mainstream national political parties.

The PPP chief added that is painfully clear that we have failed to understand that no one can consistently play with fire without getting burnt themselves.

Bilawal said that his party had been on the frontlines of resisting any discourse or action that promoted violence or extremism since its inception.

For this, the party and its leadership, including Mohtarma Shaheed Benazir Bhutto has paid a heavy price, said a press release from the PPP. It is distressing therefore to witness how the “selected “ were allowed to attack government properties, occupy government offices in Islamabad and hold the government hostage since 2013, the statement added.

Today, the same modus operandi is being replicated to further destroy the system, Bilawal asserted.

The PPP chairman maintained that the state is responsible for protecting people, and a serial failure of the current regime to fulfil this responsibility has dragged the country into unprecedented chaos.

He said that in any situation, the law must be the only factor to prevail and that to that effect all issues should be addressed through constitutional mechanisms, instead of resort to more violence.

Meanwhile, in a statement, Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, condemning the violence, said that the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) believes that Namoos-e-Risalat is the foundation of a Muslim’s ideology. “No Muslim can compromise on it,” he added.

Expressing concern and sadness over recent events, the PDM secretary general pointed out the government’s “failure” to establish peace in the country. He blamed the government for the loss of citizens’ and law enforcement officials’ lives.

Referring to the Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan’s (TLP) sit-in at Faizabad in 2017, the PML-N leader said that the Supreme Court (SC) had given a judgement on the matter because the same series of events had taken place back then. He said that the opposition alliance stresses that Pakistan will only become peaceful and stable when it is run in accordance with the Constitution and the public’s wishes.

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