in brief

Moonis suggests solution to Pakistan’s problems

Pakistan will not need foreign loans and pittances if its indigenous resources are harnessed in the right manner.  Moonis Elahi, PML central leader, expressed these views during a meeting with a group of Punjab citrus farmers in Lahore on Wednesday. He said the only time the nation broke the begging bowl was during the PML rule from 2002 to 2007. He said that PML-N’s step-motherly treatment of agriculture was forcing farmers to sell land to real estate developers.  Commenting on the country’s current economic crisis, the PML leader said that Pakistan could turn into one of the richest nations of the world if its abundant natural and human resources are properly harnessed. He emphasised the emergent need for maximising the country’s agriculture growth potential to minimise poverty and to reduce reliance on foreign loans and pittances. Citing the example of citrus yield in Pakistan, he said that according to the UN Pakistan was the world’s 10th largest citrus producer with an annual harvest of over 2.4 million tonnes but its citrus export was only a few hundred thousand tons. “It amounts to throwing away our kinnow in garbage even when we know that they can become our key foreign exchange earners,” said Moonis. He accused the PML-N of step-motherly treatment of agriculture and said this treatment was forcing farmers to sell out their lands and orchards to real estate developers, marriage halls and foreign investment groups. Moonis claimed that in Pakistan’s 70 years the only time Pakistan was able to break its begging bowl was in 2007. –NNI


MMA to cooperate with honest people in next elections

Jamaat-i-Islami chief Sirajul Haq says the Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal (MMA) will contest the next general elections with the cooperation of religious parties and honest people believing in the ideology of Pakistan.  According to a party press release, Siraj said secular and liberal parties that ruled the country so far had greatly harmed the country’s ideological character. He said that the country’s constitution called for supremacy of the Holy Quran and Sunnah, but the rulers had always imposed dictatorship in the name of democracy.  About the possibility of electoral alliance with the PTI in the next elections, Siraj said the MMA would contest the 2018 elections by taking around other religious parties of the country and those having a neat and clean record besides unwavering faith in the Pakistan ideology. Regarding Model Town killings, he said the JI was the first to raise voice against this bloodshed. This was not for any political gains but purely on humanitarian grounds. He said that all those responsible for these killings, whoever they were, must be punished in accordance with the law. –Staff Reporter


Lahore Press Club elections today

A close contest is expected between archrivals — Progressive Panel and Journalist Panel — in the Lahore Press Club elections scheduled for today (Thursday). Though Writers and Workers panels are also contesting the election, the real contest will be between Zulfiqar Ali Mehto led Journalist Panel and Progressive Panel headed by Azam Chaudhry.  The election committee headed by senior journalist Khawar Naeem Hashmi will supervise the polling starting at 9am and continuing without any break till 6pm at LPC premises. The other members are Khalid Chaudhry, Usman Bin Ahmed, Javed Farooqi and Saeed Akhtar. Around 3,000 council members will exercise their right to vote to elect President, Senior Vice President, Vice President, Secretary, Joint Secretary, Treasurer and nine-member Governing Body.  The elections scheduled for December 24 were postponed due to deadlock on the issue of new membership few days before the polling.   –Staff Reporter


Zardari to meet Qadri tomorrow

Former president Asif Ali Zardari will call on PAT chief Dr Tahirul Qadri here on Friday afternoon. According to a PAT press release, matters concerning APC to be held on Saturday and opposition parties’ future course of action will come under discussion.–Staff Reporter

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