LAHORE - Without naming any political party but in an obvious reference to the PML-N and the religious parties, Federal Minister for Ion Monday said all extremist forces were uniting on one platform to forge election alliance against the PPP.

"It is need of the hour to expose political parties having extremist tendencies," he said while talking to media persons at oath taking ceremony of the office-bearers of Desk Editors Forum Lahore at a local hotel on Monday. The PPP leader called upon the masses to beware of the political parties entering into alliance with extremist-minded political outfits in the upcoming general elections to rival the political parties which want to rid the country of extremism and terrorism.

On recent Karachi terrorist attacks, Kaira said Pakistan was faced with the menace of terrorism for a long period of time, adding that the terrorists were still capable of causing explosions.  He said, "the government has been taking all out measures to defeat them but it takes time." To a question, the information minister said that the general elections would be held on time come what may.

Kaira dispelled the impression that the government played

second fiddle to the world powers in the war against terror,

adding that PPP-led government supported the war against terror only to make Pakistan a safe place.

    On Pak-Iran Gas Pipeline, Kaira said the government had decided to undertake the project in the larger interest of the country, adding it was not against any country or its interest. He said that President Asif Ali Zardari would inaugurate the Pak-Iran gas pipeline project on March 11 along with his Iranian counterpart.      The minister expressed the hope that the gas pipeline project would usher in a new era of development in the region and help Pakistan meet its energy needs, as electricity could also be generated from it.

Earlier, the minister administered oath to President Desk Editors’ Forum Aslam Ch, SVP, Rana Irfan Akbar, VPs, Ishaq Ch, Asim Nisar Tipu and Azam Tauqeer, General Secretary, Malik Zafar, Joint Secretary, Shafique Khadim, Additional Secretary Abdus Salam, Deputy Secretary Khurrum Shehzad, Finance Secretary, Jaafar Ch, Information Secretary, Fraaz Ch, Secretary Coordination for electronic media, Manazer Ali, Secretary Coordination for print media, Majid Hussain and Women Wing Vice-President, Fauzia Ali Arslan.