ISLAMABAD - Prime Minister Imran Khan Saturday said that it was among government’s priorities to uplift South Punjab region by addressing its deprivations.

In a meeting with a renowned politician from South Punjab’s PP 218 constituency Malik Zafar Raan at Bani Gala, who also announced to join the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), the prime minister said the new local government system announced by his party would empower the people in real terms.

Minister for Foreign Affairs Shah Mehmood Qureshi also attended the meeting, a PM Office statement said.

This would also improve the development process in accordance with the needs of the people, he added.

Welcoming Malik Zafar to his party, the prime minister hoped that he would play his full role to realise the manifesto of the party.

In his remarks, Malik Zafar Raan expressed confidence in the leadership and vision of Imran Khan. He said the previous rulers had ignored South Punjab that had begotten backwardness, poverty, and deprivation.

He viewed that the people of South Punjab considered PTI as a redeemer that had rid the national politics of the monopoly of two parties and inculcated a new thinking in the people.

Zafar Ahmed Raan had secured over 25,000 votes in general elections 2018. For by-elections in PP-218, Zafar Raan would actively support the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf.

The PP-218 (Multan VIII) had gone vacant after the death of PTI MPA Mazhar Abbas Raan few days ago. Zafar Raan’s participation in the PTI will further strengthen the party in the constituency.