LAHORE - Federal Information Minister Pervaiz Rashid on Saturday slated Pakistan Tahrik-e-Insaf (PTI) for adopting “dual policy” under the garb of protest against the US drone attacks, saying that their rally in Peshawar was “nothing more than a farce”.

Talking to media here on Saturday the minister said that PTI government accepts US dollars in aid but Imran wants to block Nato supplies through Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

He said Pakistan is a democratic country where everyone has right to favour or oppose the government decisions and policies. “So is the right of the PTI but we oppose the duplicity of this party.”

The PTI as a party is protesting against the drone attacks while its provincial government in KPK would remain aloof for the reason it was receiving Rs37billion aid for its projects from the American government.

“Imran Khan’s heart beats for the Taliban but his sword serves the US,” Pervaiz said, adding that the PTI chairman should refuse US aid once and for all if he wanted an end to drone attacks, as was done by Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif who refused US aid. The minister maintained that drone attacks are a sheer violation of sovereignty of Pakistan and the PML-N government wanted to sort out the issue with the US through dialogue and also reach peace with Taliban through the same means. He asked US authorities to end drone attacks and urged the Taliban to resolve all issues through dialogue rather than violence. “Drone attacks are not acceptable to us in any circumstances and they must be stopped. People who use Pakistani soil to achieve their political or religious agenda are also not acceptable as they challenge our sovereignty,” he added.

About Nato supplies, Pervaiz said that our close friend Turkey was also part of it and how could Pakistan launch an assault on the forces of a friendly country like Turkey, adding that Pakistan could not leave alone millions of Pakistani expatriates working in Europe. When asked about Gen Musharraf’s trial under Article 6, the minister said that the case was sub-judice and the law would take its own course. Earlier, addressing the women participants in the electronic media training course, under the auspices of Women Media Centre in collaboration with the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), the information minister said that society was divided on the basis of gender and all were responsible for maintaining discrimination on gender. He urged the women to play a role in overcoming the barrier and avoid isolating themselves.

“Women are individuals in societies and individuals cannot be discriminated against on the basis of colour, cast or creed,” he said, adding that men and women were equal and nobody was superior to others.  He urged the women journalists to play their role in bringing the truth to the masses as it was the ideal of all journalists. The minister also gave away certificates amongst the course participants.