Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) President Shehbaz Sharif on Sunday said his party, under the leadership of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, would “bury for good” the ruling Pakistan Teheerk-e-Insaf (PTI) in the 2023 general elections.

Addressing a workers’ convention in Rawalpindi, he hinted at launching a protest movement against inflation and issued instructions to the workers to be ready for it.

Shehbaz said the PML-N’s victory in the cantonment board elections was not a mean achievement, as it had “practically buried the ruling party” for all future polls.

He termed the cantonment board elections as fair, adding that the institutions including the Election Commission (ECP) would have to conduct the general elections in the same manner as well.

The leader of the opposition in the National Assembly urged all the institutions to ensure free and fair elections according to the aspirations of the people.

“The people have now realised that the selection was wreaking havoc in the country,” he added.

The PML-N president said had his party had won the 2018 elections, it would have been the fourth tenure of Nawaz Sharif as premier and the country would have been on par with Turkey and ahead of India in terms of prosperity.

He pointed out that the prices of all essential commodities had increased, including flour, whereas the tariffs of electricity and gas have also gone up.

“Despite all this, the ‘selected’ [PM] says don’t panic,” he maintained.

The former chief minister of Punjab said the sugar price had shot up to Rs110 per kilogram while flour was available at Rs70 per kg.

“The people of Pakistan have never experienced such a situation.”

Shehbaz said that there was urgency among the masses to protest against the current regime owing to the adverse economic situation of the country.

“You have to support us to lift the country from this mess… be ready to initiate a movement against this government and give it a political defeat.”

The PML-N president said the PTI had promised 10 million jobs but hundreds of thousands had lost their livelihood since the party came into power.

He said that the PTI had also promised to provide five million houses but people were struggling to pay rent to their landlords due to the rising inflation.

He claimed that had his brother Nawaz been still in power, thousands of people would still be employed and thousands of new jobs would have been created.

He recalled how his brother ended electricity crisis and terrorism; built thousands of kilometres of motorways, schools, colleges, hospitals; added more than 14,000MW of electricity; introduced health cards; created five million jobs; and brought the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) to the country.

“But now the PTI government is bent upon defaming, defiling and badmouthing the CPEC project – the consequences of which could be devastating for Pakistan, both internationally and internally,” he warned.

“Today the electricity, gas, petrol, sugar, flour and other essential commodities had been pushed beyond the buying power of the people. Today, new taxes are being imposed on the public every second day.”

Shehbaz asked the party functionaries and workers to be ready for a protest movement against inflation and oust the PTI government politically.

Addressing the convention, party leader Khwaja Asif said apart from the way the people were served during the five-year tenure of the PML-N, the sacrifices made for the sanctity of the vote were an example of the democratic struggle.

“People still love Nawaz Sharif for his services to the people. If there is love for the leader, then unity must be created. If unity is not created, then we will not be able to win the elections.”

The story was filed by the News Desk.
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