LAHORE - Approving National Action Plan against coronavirus, Pakistan Muslim League – Nawaz (PML-N) has demanded incorporating opposition’s input in the national relief package to effectively combat the immediate healthcare and economic challenge.

The PML-N Parliamentary Party meeting, chaired by Opposition Leader Shehbaz Sharif through video link on Wednesday, also unanimously approved a resolution to pay tribute to Dr Usama Riaz, who sacrificed his life in the fight against coronavirus, and recommended to the federal government to confer civil award on the martyr in recognition of his services.

Terming federal government’s relief package meaningless, the party demanded enough allocation and execution plan to cope with the prevailing challenges.

Addressing the parliamentary party meeting, Shehbaz Sharif said that PML-N had prepared a comprehensive and practicable National Action Plan in consultation with the opposition leadership, party members and medical and economic experts, which had also been endorsed by the opposition during Tuesday’s All Parties Conference (APC) on single-point agenda of fighting against coronavirus.

This is extremely important to devise a plan to ensure supply of food and daily use items

“It was need of the hour to develop a solid, comprehensive and practicable national strategy to avert the devastations of coronavirus and its resultant economic loss,” he said, adding that PML-N along with all opposition parties would force the government to implement National Action Plan not just to protect the people from coronavirus but also to save from adverse economic impact on the lives of the masses.

He said that it was extremely important to devise a plan to ensure supply of food and daily use items at the people’s doorsteps during the lockdown. In this regard, he said, PMLN has given its recommendations in healthcare, economic, administrative and other essential sectors for implementation to ensure effective response to the challenge.

“I consider bringing politics into the national fight a sin. While we acknowledge and appreciate government for good work, it is equally important to highlight the failures,” he said, adding that it was time to put all our political interests behind and show unity to work for the protection of people against the scourge of coronavirus. “We need to work to protect the people against coronavirus in the larger national interest even if we have to suffer political loss,” he told his party.

He directed part legislators and office bearers to take an active part in relief and welfare activities. “It will also help identify the needs of the people and prepared a data bank to respond to the challenge effectively and in an organized manner,” he said, adding that working together can sail us through this crisis. The challenge relates to our survival and national security,” he added.

The party also expressed grief over loss of lives due to coronavirus in Pakistan and expressed condolence with their families. “Our hearts go out to the families who lost their loved ones to the COVID-19 scourge.

We pray to Allah Almighty to rest the departed souls in peace and give their families the fortitude to bear irreparable loss,” the party expressed.

Shehbaz Sharif also conveyed Nawaz Sharif’s message of solidarity, good wishes and prayers to the people of Pakistan in these difficult and testing times. “The party leadership, members and workers to play a historic role in efforts to protect the people of Pakistan,” he quoted Nawaz Sharif as saying.