Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) President Shahbaz Sharif on Saturday said his party was contesting the upcoming election on the basis of its performance during the past 10 years.
“Our politics is based on performance and not on sit-ins, blockades, abuses and allegations,” the former Punjab chief minister remarked, while taking a jibe at PML-N’s rival Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI).
Shahbaz, while giving an interview to Geo News, said that their party was contesting against all political forces and PTI was one of them.
Talking about Kulsoom Nawaz, he described her condition as critical and said she was still on the ventilator.
Shahbaz brushed aside the rumours of any differences between him and Nawaz Sharif. “Nawaz Sharif is in London looking after his ailing wife; he will return soon after she recovers,” he said.
Talking about PML-N’s tenure, Shahbaz mentioned that they reduced the shortfall of electricity and started mega power projects. “We have been able to defy terrorism due to our partnership with the military,” he added.
He was of the view that the sit-ins by their political rivals badly affected the economic development of the country.
Answering a question, Shahbaz said he did not believe in appeasing the ‘institutions’. “Our narrative is to gain respect through performance and not through appeasement,” he said, adding that PML-N was contesting to gain respect for vote and voters.
The PML-N president criticised what he termed “selective accountability” by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB). Going a step further, talking about the judiciary, Shahbaz stopped short of criticising their decisions and instead expressed his concerns about them.
Talking about the rifts between senior PML-N leadership and former interior minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan, Shahbaz said that Nisar has been a long-standing friend of Nawaz Sharif. “I regret that distances and differences have emerged between the two,” he said.
Shahbaz said that he had persuaded Nawaz to give a party ticket to Chaudhry Nisar.
The PML-N president said the country was passing through tough times. “Our neighbour, India, has advanced in terms of economy, trade, Information Technology, textiles and industrial development,” he said.
The era of conventional warfare is over, you now have to succeed on the economic front, he said.
Responding to a question regarding the state of law enforcement and health in Punjab versus that in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa which is claimed to be far better by the PTI, the outgoing Punjab chief minister rubbished all claims believing them to be rooted in lies and deceit.
Reminding the host of an interview given to Geo News by Imran in 2013, Shahbaz said that the PTI-chief had made tall claims that he will make KP self-sufficient and that the province would supply electricity to the rest of the country through hundreds of dams.
“What of those claims can you see before you today?” Shahbaz questioned, adding that Imran only likes to speak lies and indulge in “blame games”.