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ISLAMABAD: Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah on Monday warned that the government would give a befitting response to Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) in case it takes any unconstitutional step or stormed the federal capital through jathas (groups) culture after securing majority seats in by-elections.

“Winning majority seats in the by-elections does not mean that you have obtained a license to take an unconstitutional step. If you have taken any unconstitutional step and stormed the capital city through jatha culture, then you would be responded with full force,” Sanaullah said while addressing a press conference.

He also said that if you have opened this path, then you should forget that only you know this path.

“If you want elections, come to the table and come to the parliament,” he asked Imran Khan.

The minister said that we have given sacrifices for the supremacy of the constitution and now we are ready to give every kind of sacrifice for the protection of the constitution and democracy.

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“When you were in the government, our party won all by-elections due to rising inflation but winning by-elections does not mean that we would have toppled your government through an unconstitutional way,” he said.

He said that we have toppled your government through a constitutional way and we did not adopt jatha culture.

He told Khan you are saying we do not know what you will do. We know how to deal with you, he said, adding that we will protect democracy and rule of law. You want chaos and lawlessness in the country, he said, adding that all the political parties will stop this attitude.

The interior minister said that the PTI obtained 547,622 votes and Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) candidate obtained 475,000 during by-elections. He said that we respect the votes secured by the PTI candidates but at the same time they should also respect the votes obtained by the PDM candidates. If the PTI did not respect our mandate, then they should not expect us to respect their mandate, he said.

Sanaullah said that if you think that all the people who voted for us are thieves and dacoits, then in our eyes you are the biggest thief and dacoit. “Democracy and democratic behaviour mean to accept the results of a fair and transparent election, to respect the vote, to accept the decision of the vote instead of changing the decision,” he said.

He said that we will not tolerate such intolerant behaviour. He also claimed that the PML-N has secured more votes during the by-elections as compared to the previous general elections. When there are general elections in the country the situation would be different as at that time the PTI would not have the support of the provincial governments.

The interior minister said that as per our estimates we got 15,000 to 20,000 less votes due to electricity bills. The electricity bills of the last one or two months have badly affected people due to which the public has expressed anger and some help was provided by the provincial governments to the PTI candidates, he said.

He said that inflation and petroleum product prices increased in the county due to difficult decisions taken by the government to protect the country from default. “The main reason behind the defeat in by-elections is inflated electricity bills and inflation,” he said.

He said that I admit that the people were expecting that we will decrease electricity bills and inflation but unfortunately, we could not meet their expectations. If there was not so much devastation in the country due to floods we might have controlled inflation and brought down inflated electricity bills, he said.

However, he said that the government will give relief to the public in the next two to three months. To a question, he said that the PML-N will contest the next elections under the leadership of former premier Nawaz Sharif.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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