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ISLAMABAD: As the government had a sigh of relief after Prime Minister Imran Khan’s meeting with the Chaudharys of Gujrat, Federal Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid on Wednesday contended that the meeting took away all the air from the opposition’s no-confidence balloon.

Talking to journalists here, he said that he doesn’t see any march on the 23rd as there has been a deadlock among the opposition parties over their plan to bring a no-confidence motion against Prime Minister Khan.

“By meeting with the Chaudharys, the Prime Minister did a great job,” he added. The minister maintained that the opposition parties had failed in their agenda against the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government and the no-trust motion being proposed by them still had a long way to go.

About the long march by the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) led by its chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari, he said that Bilawal should better stay calm as long marches and things like this are beyond his capabilities.

He reiterated that he remained unconcerned about it but he did say that the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) should reconsider its long march scheduled for March 23rd as Pakistan Day celebrations will be underway.

He said that a fleet of 25 J17C planes will have a “fly-past” on March 23rd and that there will be a “historic parade” on March 22 and 23.

He said that Pakistan was moving towards a more neutral foreign policy under the leadership of PM Khan, adding the country should aim to organise itself further on matters of foreign relations.

Commenting on the Prime Minister’s recent relief package announcement, he said that the poor people of the country were given relief for the “first time”.

He said the people should commend what the Prime Minister did as it is a huge relief for the poor masses, adding the prices of oil and sugar should also be lowered.

The minister claimed that the opposition was speaking against the poor people getting relief by criticising the subsidy package.

On Tuesday, the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader, Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, had said that the PTI government’s desperate relief plan fiasco will further destroy the national economy, burden the people with more taxes and make the future of Pakistan bleaker.

Rashid also stated the performance of the civil defence was exemplified during the October 8 earthquake, the Ojhri camp, and the 1965 war.

He hoped that the youth will be trained in civil defence in colleges and that introductory programmes will be conducted in all four provincial capitals for it.

“No disaster comes knocking at the door, we must always be ready to deal with war, natural disasters, and other challenges,” he said.

The minister further added that foreign training should be available for civil defence personnel and that its officers should be equipped with modern technology.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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