ISLAMABAD - President Dr Arif Alvi Thursday said dishonest decisions and corruption done in past were the main reasons behind the economic crisis being faced by the country at present.

The president, in an interview with a private television channel, said the people had voted the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf to government because of its commitment to purge the country of the corrupt and develop it on the principles of State of Madinah.

He said after the 18th Constitutional Amendment powers were delegated to the parliament. However, the president’s office still had a crucial role to play for maintaining balance and cooperation among the federating units. The constitution also allowed the president to play his role on non-political subjects like family planning, prevention of diseases and women’s right of inheritance, he said.

Dr Alvi said he had even initiated a process of awards for television channels for airing public service messages on social issues. He said the media had to do a lot to uplift the society by focusing on social issues as currently they were more tilted towards the political subjects.

Says move to remove Senate chairman without any charge sheet was nothing but politics

To a question, he said the move to remove the Senate chairman without any charge sheet against him was nothing but politics, which was contrary to the national interest.

Asked whether the secret balloting in Senate should be abolished, he said it was meant to allow the senators to use their right as per conscience.

The president ruled out the notion of any political victimisation of leaders and said the National Accountability Bureau was carrying out its responsibilities independently.

To a question about U-turns by the government, he said it was necessary to change decisions while pursuing an ideology, to achieve the desired results.

The president said the right of contesting election to dual nationals had always been debated in the party and it had also been the desire of the expatriates. To a query, he said the governments had been announcing amnesty schemes for long, but he had always called for the one, which should be final.

He said the State of Madinah was the goal for the PTI government and it was striving for that.

To a question about the PTI’s decision to form a coalition with the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) despite having serious differences in the past, the president opined that the MQM was now a different party, which had done away with the militancy factor.

He said it had become a tendency to evade taxes but the prime minister was steadfast to reform taxation system and document the economy.

About appointment of non-elected persons on important slots, Dr Alvi said the constitution provided powers to the prime minister, who wanted to bring competent people to fore.

Asked about his role in a reference against Justice Qazi Faez Isa, he said he had done his constitutional duty as he wanted the matter to be investigated. He said he was confident that the Supreme Judicial Council would decide the matter on merit.

About criticism on conferment of Tamgha-e-Imtiaz to film and TV actress Mehwish Hayat, he said he had approved the list of nominees forwarded to him on the prime minister’s advice without dropping any individual.

He said the government was working to strictly ensure merit in conferment of national awards.