Pakistan Peoples Party chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari said on Sunday that they would have to fight undemocratic forces in order to save the federation.
Addressing a workers’ convention in Larkana, the PPP chairman said a few people were unable to tolerate the 18th amendment of the constitution.
“In the past too, people were unable to tolerate the 1973 constitution,” he told the attendees. “We’ll have to fight undemocratic forces. We’ll have to save the federation.”
Bilawal said his party’s government in the past took revolutionary steps like that of introducing the Benazir Income Support Programme.
“Asif Zardari saved the country by chanting ‘Pakistan Khappay’,” he said, in reference to the resentment among the masses following the assassination of former prime minister Benazir Bhutto.
The PPP chairman said his party granted autonomy to the provinces and a unanimous constitution to the country.
“In our tenure, power lied with the people. [Zulfiqar Ali] Bhutto Shaheed brought back 90,000 prisoners of war,” he noted.
“The undemocratic forces disliked Bhutto’s achievements and put him in jail, yet he remained firm on his principles.”
Bilawal accused the incumbent government of “plundering the constitutional and financial rights of the provinces”.
“The government didn’t give a single rupee to Karachi in the last one year,” he said. “It wants to seize the city on the pretext of garbage.”
The PPP chairman said the current rulers thought that they could bring a puppet government in Sindh by throwing its leadership into jails.
“Asif Zardari has previously served his time in prisons and can serve it now as well,” he said. “But he will not bow before this government.”
Bilawal dared the government to arrest whosoever it wanted to, asserting that they would not make a compromise on their principled stance.
“We will not make a compromise on the 18th amendment, economic justice and democratic principles,” he said.
“These people are busy trying to break our members for the past one year,” the PPP chairman said, noting, “We form government with the power of the people.”
He said the people of Sindh had given their mandate to the PPP and they were ready to respond to the puppet government in the centre.
“The people of Sindh will not tolerate a puppet chief minister,” he said.
Bilawal further criticised the government for incarcerating the entire political leadership of the country “without having been sentenced”. “If Asif Zardari and Faryal Talpur have done any wrong, then why do [you] not punish them?”
He shamed the government for depriving the masses of employment and shelter, despite having promised them 10 million jobs and 5 million houses.
“The government compromised the country’s economic sovereignty by bowing before the IMF,” the PPP chairman slammed.
Concluding his address, he gave a deadline of the year’s end to the government for mending its ways.
“We have always refused to stage a sit-in in Islamabad,” Bilawal said. “However, if the coalition partners and selectors of the government will not send it home, then we will come to Islamabad and do it.”