LAHORE – Rejecting Interior Minister Rehman Malik blames on the Sharif family, Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif has said he will quit the politics if corruption of a penny is proved against him or his family.

“IG of liars (Rehman Malik) is engaged in a vilification campaign regarding writing off the bank loans on political basis,” Shahbaz Sharif told a function organised by Punjab Educational Endowment Fund on achieving distribution of educational scholarship of Rs one billion among deserving students at Chief Minister’s Secretariat, here Wednesday.

Special Assistant Zaeem Hussain Qadri, Vice Chairman of Fund Dr. Amjad Saqib, Justice (R) Amir Raza, principals and professors of various colleges, recipients of educational scholarships from all over the country, intellectuals and educationists were present.

“We are committed to recover the looted wealth of the nation from Ali Baba and 40 Thieves and to force them out,” the chief minister added.

Continuing his tirade against the Zardari government, the CM said billions of rupees of public money had been misappropriated in Pakistan to result in economic backwardness in the region. He said due to corruption even pure medicines were not available to the patients nor funds were available agriculture development. He said cities and villages of Pakistan were plunged in darkness for looting of billion of rupees. He said the poor children with brilliant academic record had no future while a handful of elite had all resources at their disposal. He said due to a flawed system the rich were enjoying all perks and privileges while the poor were denied even a decent meal. He said this unjust system had almost destroyed the country and it was time for self-reckoning and reformation.

Talking about the shaking credibility of the government, he said drone attacks were order of the day despite Parliamentary resolutions and they resume even before ink of the first resolution is dried up.

“A respectable survival lies in self-reliance and reawakening of the nation which has to come through rooting out corruption and plunders in the country going on in the county over the last four years and for that end collective efforts by all and sundry are needed,” Shahbaz Sharif added. He said destiny of the country could be changed if the rulers occupying Islamabad return the wealth they had looted.

About the Punjab Educational Endowment Fund, he said it was the biggest educational scholarship programme of its kind in the world which aimed at supporting the poor talented students. He said the Fund had kindled a new hope in the needy students and was a revolutionary project which would produce excellent human resource and a confident leadership to the country. He said that Punjab government had awarded educational scholarships of as many as one billion rupees in a highly transparent manner to more than 30,200 deserving students from the endowment fund.

He said the amount of the educational fund would be increased to Rs 10 billion during the next financial year so that no student remains deprived of education due to financial constraints. He said the youth could compete with anyone in intelligence and hard work He said intelligent and educated youth would lay the foundation of a prosperous Pakistan which is free from corruption, exploitation and unjust distribution of wealth and is the realisation of the dreams of Quaid-e-Azam and Allama Iqbal.

Earlier, Dr. Amjad Saqib in his welcome address said that scholarships of one billion rupees will be given to the deserving students annually from the next financial year. Recipients of scholarships from Endowment Fund including Amin Saddique of Taunsa Sharif, Abdul Qayyum of Balochistan, Monica Andleeb of Azad Kashmir, Rehana Bibi mother of Awais Wasim who is studying Chemical Engineering at Punjab University and Justice (R) Amir Raza also addressed the function.