LAHORE - Railways Minister Khawaja Saad Rafique and National Assembly Speaker Sadar Ayaz Sadiq vowed on Sunday to expose the hidden hand behind the firing on the residence of a Supreme Court judge.

Addressing an inaugural ceremony of new residential flats for railway employees in the Garhi Shahu area on Sunday, both PML-N leaders demanded transparent and timely general elections.

“The attack on Justice Ijazul Ahsan’s house is condemnable. The government will expose those who are behind the conspiracy,” said Ayaz Sadiq. He said the nation had witnessed many engineered elections in the past but the upcoming polls should be free and transparent. The country, he added, could not afford more engineered elections.

Saad Rafique said the attack on the residence of Supreme Court judge was a barbaric act and the culprits must be exposed and punished. He said one could differ or criticise the judgements of the courts in a decent way. But, he added, such brutality could never be accepted in a democratic country. He said that governments should come and go with their respect intact. The tradition, he added, to oust a democratic government and abuse politicians by declaring them corrupt must change now. The law of giving respect to everyone applied to everyone and it should not be specific to politicians. The representatives of the people, he added, deserved respect.

Discussing Railways' progress, Rafique said that future of the department was bright. However, he stressed that railways should be kept away from politics. The minister said that more than one decade was required for transformation of railways.

Speaking about the general elections in 2018, he said that political parties were collectively responsible for ensuring timely elections.

Saad said that using abusive language or levelling allegations would deepen the rifts among people.

He said confrontation was not favourable to elections so peaceful and transparent political atmosphere was vital for elections.

The minister said that every nature of allegation was levelled against the PML-N and even belief was not spared. Saad claimed that loadshedding and other issues would have been sorted out, if the government was given free hand to work.

The minister said that disqualification of Nawaz Sharif itself damaged PTI Chairman Imran Khan and nobody earned any benefit from it. He said respect of vote should be maintained.

Saad said that it could not be allowed to convert the country into a 'banana state' so every wrong act should be condemned.

He said a democratic government would transfer power to the elected government and it were norms of all civilised countries.

The minister thanked Allah for completion of another project after which 96 families would be facilitated. He revealed that modern flats would be constructed in four big cities.

Saad said flats would be given on merit so nobody should try to approach for allotment of flats.

He said that there was objection on the election of Chairman Senate Sadiq Sanjrani but now when he opted Pakistan Railways for traveling, the railways gave him protocol and respect.

The federal minister said the PML-N government did its best to end loadshedding in the country and added more than 10,000 megawatts electricity to the national grid.

He said the railways was a national institution and not a single regular employee had been sacked from the department.

Saad said that he was satisfied with his performance, adding that credit of restoring railways went to the officers and workers. Pakistan Railways CEO Javaid Anwar also spoke on the occasion.

Separately, talking to a private news channel, Saad claimed that no mega scandal of corruption was found in railways during the ongoing tenure of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) government. No single appointment was made in the department on political basis while no employee was ousted from the service, he said.

He said the deficit of railways was controlled as he and other officers had worked hard for the betterment of the department. He said the department was facilitating the commuters by providing comfortable travelling on cheaper rates.