LAHORE - A political, diplomatic and media frenzy has erupted around Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif’s jacket during his stay in Indian capital of New Delhi.

The chief minister is often seen in this jacket – worn by the leaders of the Chinese revolution – back home too. That was what brought so much attention to his jacket.

“He [Shahbaz] had the full right to wear ‘this dress of revolutionaries’,” said a diplomat, who had been very much impressed with chief minister’s speech, in a reception the other day.

He said he was surprised to see Shahbaz Sharif in this dress, but today after listening to his speech, he came to the conclusion that he had the full right to wear this dress of revolutionaries.

Shahbaz Sharif meanwhile said Pakistan would accept cooperation of any country to generate energy and offset the power shortfall.

In his address during his visit to Mahatma Gandhi Power project in Haryana, Shahbaz Sharif said he had already visited Turkey, Germany and China to acquire cooperation in the energy sector and his efforts had proved to be useful. He said the basic purpose of his visit to India was to benefit from its experiences in power generation.

He said he was pleased to know that 1600-MW electricity was being produced through the Mahatma Gandhi power plant using local and imported coal. He said as the quality of Indian coal was close to that found in Pakistan; therefore, there was no reason Pakistan could not set up a similar plant.

He said during the next two days of his tour, he would visit solar energy and coal-based power plants in more Indian cities. He said technology was not the exclusive right of anyone and it was a matter of pleasure that Indian government and power companies had displayed sincerity towards providing useful information to Pakistan as regards the energy sector.

Shahbaz said if India could produce surplus power, then the people of Pakistan could also overcome loadshedding through hard work, honesty and better strategies.

He said that darkness was not the destiny of the Pakistanis and Pakistan would also be able to eliminate darkness and join those countries which had electricity in abundance.

He said the dream of industrial and agriculture development could not be realised without overcoming shortage of energy and that is why the ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz was attaching top priority to the very subject.

Later, talking to newsmen, Shahbaz Sharif said he was ready to visit any country to seek cooperation for resolution of Pakistan’s energy crisis. In reply to a question, the chief minister said Pakistan would welcome Indian offer of power supply at reasonable rates.