LAHORE - Dozens of PPP workers on Saturday staged a protest by setting up a camp in front of the Punjab Assembly on The Mall. 

The protesters chanted anti-government slogans and demanded the release of the jailed PPP leaders including former President Asif Ali Zardari, his sister Faryal Talpur, and MNA Khurshid Shah. A good number of women and children were also among the protesters.

All major opposition parties are preparing to launch a countrywide protest movement since the government has intensified crackdown on opposition leaders, who are detained on corruption allegations.

While addressing party workers, PPP leader and former Punjab Governor Sardar Lateef Khosa said that former President Asif Ali Zardari would never bow to any kind of pressure. He also claimed that the National Accountability Bureau had no evidence against Asif Ali Zardari.

Lateef Khosa said a case of fake bank account had been registered against the former president who, in fact, had no fake account. Referring to PM Imran Khan, Khosa said the selected PM was multiplying the miseries of the people. He clarified that Zardari Group was established by Hakim Ali Zardari, the father of Asif Ali Zardari. He said that Asif Ali Zardari had resigned from the Zardari Group when he was elected as President of Pakistan.  

Lateef Khosa also criticized PM Khan over his economic policies stating that PM Imran Khan was working on the agenda of someone else. He said that the PM had pledged 10 million new jobs but he was depriving people of their livelihood. “Now, they are running from one country to another and are just begging,” he said.  About the Azadi March announced by JUI-F leader Maulana Fazal-ur-Rehman, the PPP leader said that his party would welcome participants of the march at every junction. He said all opposition parties support the protest march.

Lateef Khosa also demanded that all “political prisoners” including Asif Ali Zardari must be released. He further said the foreign funding case involving PTI must be decided by the Election Commission of Pakistan. “When the verdict will come, it will be revealed that PTI had been receiving funds from abroad which is illegal,” he said.

He also announced that PPP was going to launch a mass contact movement from Karachi to Kashmir.

He said his party would attend the protests march and procession but they will not join the sit-in in the federal capital.

PPP leaders including Syed Hassan Murtaza, Samina Khalid Ghurki, Aslam Gill, Nargis Khan, Sohail Malik, and Arif Khan also spoke on this occasion.