LAHORE - Chinese Ambassador Yao Jing called on Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif at Punjab House in Islamabad Tuesday and assured him of all-out help for the completion of Orange Line.

According to a handout issued here, the Chinese ambassador congratulated the chief minister for SC’s permission to resume work on the project, saying this would be a “masterpiece of Pak-China friendship”.

Assuring his country’s help, he said the Chinese companies will make organized efforts to complete their assignments as soon as possible.  The Chinese also praised Shehbaz for his good governance, saying “You are a bright star of Punjab’s development.”

Shehbaz said: “The project will provide honorable transport facilities to thousands of citizens. This project is a gift to the people of Pakistan from the leadership of China that has fully supported this project despite hurdles.”

He said that Pak-China friendship is an example for the world.

He said CPEC, which is a mega project of bringing economic resolution, will prove a harbinger of economic prosperity for all the countries of the region. He went on to say: Despite countless hurdles, the government has continued the journey of public service and due to the commitment of the government, the crisis of loadshedding has been overpowered. Ensuring national development and public prestige are our strong commitments and we are continuously working to achieve this vision.”

Calling the Orange Line a national project, the chief minister said the initiative would provide economical, dignified and cheap transport facility to layman. Separately addressing a review meeting from Punjab House through video link, he said the project would be completed with renewed commitment and passion. He said that directives of the Supreme Court would be fully abided by and a special fund would be set up for protection of historical buildings.

He said the project had been delayed for 22 months and added that PTI  was responsible for the delay. He said that people would hold the PTI accountable for this delay. He said that political elements, which created hurdles in the way of this project, would be held accountable by the masses. He lamented that the PTI had given priority to personal interest over public interest. He said the project had been restarted by the grace of God. He said, “Such times come in life, but we have to continue our work with tolerance, patience and persistence. This is time to show something to the nation. You all should burn midnight oil and strive for early completion of the project. You should double and triple your efforts so as to compensate the delay.” He said that success would be achieved if work is done 24 hours a day and every moment is utilised.

Also,  he chaired a meeting to review arrangements for celebrating Quaid Day  on December 25. He laid stress on following in the footsteps of Muhammad Ali Jinnah to make Pakistan prosperous. The ceremonies planned in connection with the day will continue for seven days in the province and special functions will be held in educational institutions.  The CM directed that the arrangements, ceremonies and other programs should be well according to the stature of founder of the nation.

“Today we are enjoying liberty in independent state of Pakistan because of the great struggle of Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah.

The great personalities like him are born after centuries and he materialised the dream of Iqbal,” Shehbaz said, adding that Jinnah wanted equal opportunities for all the people and Pakistan was envisioned by him as a state based on the principles of prosperity, peace, enlightenment and equality.