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LAHORE: Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Attaullah Tarar said on Sunday the government was fully aware of the challenges facing the country and steps were required to tackle economic problems. Addressing at a press conference here at the PML-N Secretariat, he said that Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif had shared his agenda aimed at stabilising the country’s economy.

He said the prime minister had taken up all matters seriously, including reducing government expenses, privatization of certain state-owned entities. “Restructuring of the Federal Board of Revenue and tax reforms are major initiatives the government is undertaking to increase the tax net. All these measures are being taken to reduce the burden on poor people and to bring elites in the tax net,” he maintained.

He said that international economic journals like Bloomberg had termed the appointment of the Finance Minister a good step, adding that international journals had acknowledged that Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif had a potential to overcome economic challenges through reforms.

He said, “Political stability leads to economic stability and sincere efforts are being made in this regard.”

He strongly condemned the terrorist attack in the Mir Ali area of North Waziristan, in which seven soldiers, including two officers, were martyred. He said that Captain Ahmed Badar was also martyred, who was the only brother of five sisters. He said how painful and tragic it was for his family.

“Law enforcement agencies, the people of Pakistan, politicians and almost every segment of society have rendered a lot of sacrifices in the war against terrorism,” he added.

Attaullah Tarar paid tribute to all martyrs of Mir Ali including Lieutenant Colonel Syed Kashif Ali and Captain Muhammad Ahmed Badar and strongly condemned the malicious campaign launched by social media accounts associated with the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI).

“The PTI is involved in disrespecting martyrs,” he said, citing some examples such as May 9, when state institutions came under attack, martyrs’ memorials were vandalised, and the Lasbela helicopter crash was ridiculed.

The minister said that the smear campaign against martyrs was not acceptable and it had not only hurt the sentiments of families of martyrs but also the entire nation.

He said those who were behind the vile campaign were being identified and stern action would be taken against them. He said that accounts involved in the malicious campaign had been reported to relevant platforms but unfortunately the accounts were still operational.

He said, “One can resort to political criticism but for God sake, stop promoting an anti-Pakistani agenda.”

He said, “Martyrs are the pride of the country and a guarantee of its survival.” Attaullah Tarar said that it was a high time to get united in the larger interest of the country and certain red lines should not be crossed at all. The minister alleged that some political elements wanted to harm the national economy for their vested interests through negative tactics like writing a letter to the International Monetary Fund. He said it was a mission of the government to ensure development in the country besides making the lives of people prosperous. He said that the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf should have openly condemned those who had demonstrated outside the IMF building and made online petitions to revoke Pakistan’s GSP plus status.

“There is a need to promote national harmony. Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif talked about a charter of reconciliation just to put the country on track to real development,” he added.

He said that anything against the country’s integrity was not acceptable, adding that all political parties should condemn such actions and make collective efforts to strengthen the country. To a question, he said that many accounts involved in the vile campaign were being operated from outside the country but some followers of the accounts were also in Pakistan. He said that many accounts were also being operated from Pakistan, adding that a legal action would be taken against the elements involved in the vile campaign so that such elements meet their logical end.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2024

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