Raja Pervez Ashraf leads PPP’s tractor-trolley march

LAHORE    –   Former prime minister and Pakistan Peoples Party central Punjab president Raja Pervez Ashraf on Friday said that the government had lost control of everything in the country and the economy was in the lurch while the IMF had taken control of the SBP. He expressed these views while addressing the Tractor-Trolley March from Jahaz Chowk Benazir Avenue to the Press Club Okara, organised by Sahiwal division after Friday prayers. The protest was addressed by PPP General Secretary Syed Hassan Murtaza, Information Secretary Shehzad Saeed Cheema, and Spokesman for PPP Chairman Ali Badar.  PPP leaders were present on the occasion. Raja said that the government had failed to show seriousness on every matter of national importance. “Civil servants are on the streets and the government is making mockery of their issues instead of resolving them at the earliest,” he stated. He said the agriculture university was lacking research and this sector needs immediate attention of the government. He also demanded preference to the agriculture graduates by increasing the budget for agriculture research. The PPP leader recalled that when the PPP was in the government, it had also negotiated with the IMF.

He was of the opinion that the main focus of the government during the talks with the world donors should be the betterment and relief for the common people.

He said protests will be held throughout the country on January 24 to show solidarity with the farmers of the country. He also said that it is time that all the political and democratic forces should stand with the farmers of the country otherwise the country will suffer a big economic loss.

He said: “We were happy when Indian farmers were protesting for their rights adding that on the other hand, when our farmers protested for their rights our government tortured their farmers when they raised their voice for their rights”.  He said giving rights to the farmers was a part of the manifesto of Pakistan.

He further said that it was the responsibility of the government that they should provide fertilizers at cheaper rates and solved all the issues faced by farmers including the availability of water for the crops. He said: “Unfortunately we don’t have any agriculture policy nor do we have any research councils. The government should surrender to the demands of farmers forthwith and provide all the inputs to farmers without delay”, he stressed and added that the government should extend a fruitful benefit to farmers in consideration of their hard work in fields.

General Secretary PPP Syed Hassan Murtaza PPP would not bow to any hurdle or ban by the government. According to him, farmers of an agricultural country are in trouble, the PPP and its leadership has decided to not leave him alone.

“Chances of survival for any government minimize as and when farmers take to streets,” he added. Murtaza said the PPP would force the government to understand the problems of farmers. “Every country supports their farmers and Pakistan is the only country where the government is exploiting them.”

He said: “The government had imported four million tons of wheat after claiming that the country has sufficient stocks of wheat. The government had managed to smuggle wheat to Afghanistan. The PPP government had improved the amount of support price of wheat and sugarcane farmers. We also kept the cost of production under control and ensured maximum benefit to farmers.” He said that the failure of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government is the failure of the selected, and selectors, not the failure of democracy. He also said that the prosperity of the country is linked with the prosperity of the farmer.

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