No change can take place unless corrupt elite is held accountable: PM

SARGODHA – Prime Minister Imran Khan said Wednesday that a society could not survive without rule of law and when the powerful and corrupt elite were not held accountable for their misdeeds.

While talking to reporters after laying the foundation stone of low-cost housing units under Naya Pakistan Housing Programme here, the prime minister linked prosperity and progress of a country and nation to rule of law and its application to all.

Responding to a question regarding release of Mian Shehbaz Sharif on bail, Imran Khan said the corrupt rulers had siphoned off billions of rupees from the national exchequer. There were irrefutable evidences about their corruption. 

Unless a society decided to hold the corrupt accountable, no change could take place, he said, posing a question, “Tell me a nation in the world where there is rule of law and it is still reeling back in poverty?”

Today, the issues of poverty and price hike in the country were the symptoms of their corruption, he said.

To another question, Imran Khan said the sugar price had been increased by Rs26 in one year and the mills owners extracted Rs126 to Rs140 billion from the pockets of people. “The government’s job is to protect its people,” he added.

Sugar mill owners minted Rs126 to 140b in one year

The government conducted an inquiry through the Federal Investigation Agency, which submitted a startling report showing how the mill owners and powerful people had minted money by increasing price and tax evasion etc, he added.

The prime minister reiterated that there could be no two different sets of laws for the powerful and the poor as the destruction in a society had always been caused by the powerful elite. About the affordable housing project, the prime minister said it was being made possible because in the past, no one in Pakistan ever thought of the poor people.

The government could provide subsidy on housing with the cooperation of banks, he said, adding in the past, the banks were reluctant to extend loaning facilities due to foreclosure laws. The government was providing Rs 300,000 subsidy on each housing unit, besides it had brought down the interests rates with the cooperation of banks, enabling the aspirants to pay minimum monthly installments, the PM said.

The Prime Minister said thirty-one sites were selected in peri-urban areas in Punjab for low cost housing projects to provide affordable houses to the low-income class on installments.

Under the project, a total of 1,175 houses measuring three-Marla each will be constructed at six places in Sargodha district. Imran Khan said for the first time in country’s history, mortgage house finance has been launched at such a big scale but at lowest mark-up rate.

Speaking on the occasion, the Chief Minister Punjab Sardar Usman Buzdar said the project would be expanded to 146 tehsils of the province. He said the monthly installment has been fixed at 10,000 rupees for making the project affordable. He said a subsidy of three hundred thousand rupees by the government of Punjab would facilitate the people. Earlier, the Prime Minister laid the foundation-stone and planted a sapling on the occasion in line with the Clean and Green Project.

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