LAHORE - Minister for Railways Sheikh Rashid Ahmed has alleged there is a mafia that wants to destabilise Prime Minister Imran Khan’s government.

Addressing a news conference here at PR headquarters on Saturday, Sh Rashid said all parties were on same page regarding Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa’s extension, and the Supreme Court had given a very wise decision.

The minister said the COAS had dealt a serious blow to India in the form of Kartarpur Corridor and New Delhi will remember it forever.

Answering a question, he claimed that former president Asif Ali Zardari’s matters pertaining to his plea bargain will be settled till March as the PM will never give NRO to anyone.

About former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, the railways minister said, he was in London for medical treatment while Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) President Shehbaz Sharif had gone with him on what he called a holiday.

The federal minister said the

whole nation was standing behind the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) projects and these will be completed despite pressure from certain elements.

Says criticism on CPEC conspiracy against Pak-China friendship

“The revenue of the railways is increasing gradually and it will come out of deficit within three years. All officers of the railways will have to give results,” he said.

APP adds: Sheikh Rashid Ahmad said criticism on China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) was a conspiracy against friendship between Pakistan and China.

He said anti-Pakistan elements wanted to create differences between Pakistan and China. He said conspiracies had been hatched in several countries like Iraq, Iran, Yemen, Libya and some other countries and the same enemy wanted to destabilise Pakistan through any conspiracy.

Talking about the recent situation about extension in service of Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Qamar Javaid Bajwa, the minister said the government would successfully amend the law about the extension within six weeks instead of given six months.

He said the COAS deserved extension as he strongly hit India by supporting the opening of Kartarpur Corridor and turned the positive sentiments of Sikh community towards Pakistan.

“Credit of peace in neighboring country Afghanistan also goes to Bajwa as well the installation of fence along the Afghan-Pakistan border for the security of country and region,” he added.

The minister said the COAS also helped developing relations with China, Iran, UAE and Saudi Arabia.

The railways minister said that Bajwa was also standing by the democratic government.

To a question, he said the PTI could easily amend law about extension through simple majority, however, he added no political party would oppose the amendment even if it was required in the constitution for extension in services of COAS.

“We did mistakes in this regard but our will was pure,” he added.

He said Federal Minister Farogh Naseem was a competent lawyer and the mistake made in the draft of extension, was not made by him.

To another question, he expressed his reservations over law and order situation in Punjab, however, he expressed hope that Chief Minister Usman Buzdar would correct matters successfully.

About Kashmir issue, the minister said Kashmir was a lifeline for Pakistan and the narrative about Kashmir could never be changed.

To another question about student unions and politics, he said he was a big supporter of student unions so that young talented and educated leadership could be produced.

Criticising the opposition leaders, he said Nawaz and Shehbaz Sharif wanted to remain in the news so why they connected the terrorist incident and London Bridge with their presence in the city which was their foolish attitude.

He said PPP leader Asif Ali Zardari would also be released through

plea-bargain.

“Fazlur Rehman should also understand that he could get nothing through his sit-in in Islamabad,” he added.

Sh Rashid said it was commitment of Prime Minister Imran Khan that he would not give NRO to anyone.

He said some conspirators were designing against the country by raising prices of commodities, wheat and sugar and sometimes these elements support Fazlur Rehman type politicians to destabilise the government, adding that they could never be succeeded.

“Economy is on right track while the Stock Exchange is also showing positive indicators so the new year will come with several good news for the nation,” he added.

He said Pakistan Railways would also be rehabilitated in the new year and infrastructure would be modernized.

The minister said that several changes in the railway administration would be made in the new year and poor performers would be replaced.

“We will pull out the railways from deficit in five years and in case of Afghan transit, the period will be reduced to three years,” he added.