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Shehbaz vows to fix mess left by PTI govt

ISLAMABAD: PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif was on Monday elected as the prime minister of Pakistan by 174 members of National Assembly after Imran Khan was ousted through a no-trust move a day earlier.

In his maiden speech, the prime minister-elect vowed to over overcome economic issues in coordination and cooperation with allied parties.

Shehbaz remarked, “I have said it many times that a life of debt is no life.”

Highlighting the importance of hard work and financial independence, he said, “If we have to survive, we have to do it like an honourable and self-relying nation. Else, we cannot regain our lost status.”

“And if we have to take the country’s economy forward, we will have to opt for dialogue over deadlock … and rapprochement over disagreements,” he underlined.

Taking a jibe at the PTI over its slogan of “tabdeeli” (change), he said, “Change doesn’t come simply by talking.”

Policy measures

  • Minimum wage to be increased to Rs25,000 from April 1
  • 10pc increase in pensions from April 1
  • Wheat flour to be made available at a reduced price under a Ramazan package
  • Shehbaz commits to making Pakistan a “paradise for investments”
  • High electricity prices will be addressed
  • Measures to be taken for the progress of smaller provinces, where the youth will be given technical education and laptops
  • Ties to be strengthened with China, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, UK and Iran
  • Good ties with India conditional on the “just” resolution of Kashmir dispute
  • Voice will be raised for Kashmiris, Palestinians and Afghanistan
  • Shehbaz expressed the resolve to improve the economy through hard work and national unity.
  • The newly elected prime minister announced that he would be making arrangements for an in-camera briefing of the Parliamentary Committee on National Security to discuss and determine the authenticity of a cable that the PTI claimed contained evidence of a foreign conspiracy to topple its government.
  • Benazir card to be reintroduced.

Over the past four years, he added, “our society was poisoned and it will take years to clean this poisoned water. And this will only be possible if we stay united.”

“Otherwise, difficulties and disappointment will be our destiny.”

Shehbaz termed the country’s economic situation “very serious” and emphasised the need for hard work to improve the economy.

Addressing the leaders of other parties, he said, “If we have to save the sinking boat, then we have to stay united and work hard.”

“The situation is very bad but, God willing, it will change if we work hard.”

He lamented that the previous government had rejected his proposal of introducing a “charter of economy” to improve the economic situation.

“Had they not rejected it in a humiliating manner, the economy would not have been in such a bad state today,” Shehbaz added.

Shehbaz went on paint a bleak picture of the country’s economy and assailed the previous government for its economic policies.

He then expressed the resolve to rebuild Pakistan, announcing that his government would increase the minimum wage to Rs25,000 from April 1. Necessary legal procedures would be under taken regarding this with the help of the provinces, he added.

Decrying “injustices” in “naya” Pakistan, he said: “No one was a traitor before and no one is a traitor now”.

The prime minister-elect also announced to fix minimum wage at Rs25,000 and increase pension of civilization and military pension by 10pc.

He also asked the private sector to raise salaries of their staff with up to Rs100, 000 per month by 10pc from April 1, 2022.

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