LAHORE - Chief Minister Punjab Shehbaz Sharif said that real freedom is impossible without economic independence.

“We must tap our own resources if Pakistan has to be taken forward as strong and truly independent country. Thus collective efforts are is needed”, the Chief Minister said while addressing at the launching of a book titled "Governing the Ungovernable" authored by former SBP governor Dr Ashrat Hussain Saturday. 

He continued: “Pakistan needs a system of economic and social justice where equal opportunities of progress are available to everyone and, fair distribution of resources is done and no one is worried for basic facilities of life.”

He laid stress on filling the gap between the haves and have-nots to translate Pakistan truly according to the dreams of Quaid-i-Azam and Allama Iqbal and to also avert the bloody revolution which may emanate from frustration of the poor.

Shehbaz said that in 1990s Pakistan was ahead of many neighboring countries in terms of economic growth and today they are far ahead of us. He said corruption cases have come out in India, Bangladesh and other countries like Pakistan but unfortunately only Pakistan is lagging behind in progress despite the fact is has everything which developed countries have. He said economically strong nations are respected in the world and the weak always get dictation. He said that quality human resources admixed with effective planning and a system of checks and balances are needed to achieve development goals. He said an effective system of checks and balances and across the board accountability among the politicians, bureaucracy and all institutions is also requisite for the rapid development of the country.

The Chief Minister said undeniably development process could be expedited by transferring the powers to the lower level to the masse for which local bodies institution can play an effective role. “No heed was paid on the annual audit of these institutes during the dictatorship era of Musharraf however present government has taken great steps to strengthen and bring the transparency in the local bodies,” he claimed.

The CM said that Punjab government has also focused on quality human resources and promoted financial discipline as well as transparency in the province. He said that we can reach destination if we move forward with firm belief, determination and hard work. He said that dream of ruling the hearts of people without spending resources for their welfare honestly is nothing more than living in the fool’s paradise. He said that the Punjab government has taken unprecedented measures to narrow down difference between the rich and the poor by fair distribution of resources. In addition to it, he said that we have completed all development projects including those of energy, with transparency and new traditions have have been set up by saving billions of rupees in these projects. The way all political parties, military governments and the entire nation have made Pakistan a nuclear force, in the same way with collectively efforts we have to strengthen Pakistan economically. It is never too late and if we learn from our mistakes and move ahead, we will surely get our destination, he observed.

Addressing the function, former Governor State Bank Dr. Ishrat Hussain said that Shehbaz Sharif has improved the system through his good governance and the measures he have taken for the development of the province are appreciable in-fact it can be said thatit was the good performance of Shehbaz Sharif that brought victory to PML-N in the 2013 elections. He said that Shehbaz Sharif's plans are ideal for education, health, transport, solid waste management, infrastructure, energy and other sectors and implementation of transparency in the projects worth of billions of dollars are further adding feathers in his cap. Dr. Ishrat Hussain said that Shehbaz Sharif's efforts against the corruption are commendable and he is a committed leader as well as reformer who have ensured recruitment of millions of teachers on merit in Punjab while efficiency of institutions has been increased through the information technology. He said that performance of Shehbaz Sharif is a role model for ministers ofother provincesas his revolutionary steps has brought long term effects. Prof. Tariq Mahmood, Lahore University of Management Sciences highlighted different aspects of the book of Dr. Ishrat Hussain in his address. Dr Ishrat Hussain presented his book to CM Shehbaz Sharif. Speaker Punjab Assembly Rana Muhammad Iqbal Khan, Provincial Ministers, Member National and provincial assemblies, Lord Mayor Lahore, Chief Secretary, intellectuals and education experts were present at the function.