ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan will inform the nation on November 29 about the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s (PTI) first 100 days in government, Federal Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry said on Thursday.
“No other government has even gotten close to what we [PTI government] achieved in our first 100 days,” Chaudhry told reporters at a press conference after a session of the federal cabinet here on Thursday.
Speaking about the martyrdom of police superintendent Tahir Khan Dawar in Afghanistan after his disappearance from Islamabad, Chaudhry said Prime Minister Imran Khan and his cabinet had expressed serious concern over the matter.
“SP Tahir Dawar was the son of Pakistan. The federal cabinet has expressed deep concern over this whole matter. The prime minister has sought a detailed report from concerned authorities over this tragedy,” he said.
The information minister also raised the issue of the Safe City cameras installed in the federal capital.
“They installed 1,600 cameras for Safe City. 600 of them are not functional, while [image quality of] 800 cannot help identify faces or number plates,” he said, pointing a finger at the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) government.
“Billions of rupees were spent on the installation of these cameras,” he said.
Chaudhry also stuck to his guns when questioned about a war of words with opposition leaders in the Senate and his failure to apologise on the Senate Chairman’s directions.
“Should we apologise for asking where the billions of rupees of the poor people of Pakistan went? Should we apologise if we ask how the money of the people of Pakistan is spent?” remarked Chaudhry.
He said that there was no need to apologise after the language used by PML-N leader Mushahidullah Khan against him and the prime minister. “We are told to apologise when we speak about corruption or the billions of rupees [robbed from] the poor people of Pakistan,” he said.
He said that the cabinet was not satisfied with Chairman Senate Sadiq Sanjrani’s ruling to bar him from the House until he apologises. “The entire cabinet expressed regret over this decision [by the Senate chairman].”
The prime minister has said that nobody has the right to disrespect any minister.
“We are told to apologise if we talk about the rights of the people. These people even sold off and profited from the land of Baba Fareed Ganj Shakar,” he said.
Speaking about the Senate chairman, Chaudhry said that he was voted in by the people of Pakistan while the Sanjrani was not elected.
The federal minister said that if the Senate chairman was unable to bring order to the House, then the government would have to think over its strategy on the matter.
Speaking about the long-running dispute between the government and opposition parties over the appointment of the chairman of the Public Accounts Committee, Chaudhry said the government had accepted several demands and that the opposition will now have to reciprocate.
“The opposition’s demands are immoral,” he said, speaking about the opposition’s wishes of PML-N president Shehbaz Sharif heading the committee.
“All we are asking for is that when our first project comes, you audit it,” he said, further asking: “How will the nation accept Shahbaz Sharif auditing Nawaz Sharifs projects?”
Chaudhry said the prime minister was very concerned over the issue of Pakistani prisoners in other countries, and said it was the Government of Pakistan’s responsibility to provide them legal assistance and monetary compensation.
He said the federal government was also “very committed on the repatriation of Dr Aafia Siddiqui”, a Pakistani neuroscientist and mother of three jailed in the US for almost a decade. “We will try our best to bring her back,” he said. Monitoring Desk