LAHORE - Former President Asif Ali Zardari yesterday said that the border management with Afghanistan with mutual consultation was vital for peace in the region. He believed that it will also help resolve the issues of militancy and terrorism.

The former President stated this while commenting on reports that fencing of border with Afghanistan along the border areas in Bajaur and Mohmand had started.

PPP-P President further stated that proper securing of borders with mutual consultation will put an end to allegations of cross border incursions of militants that had vitiated the relations between the brotherly neighbours, Pakistan and Afghanistan.

Zardari observed that the relations between the two countries had plunged low in recent times.

He described it as unfortunate and called for concerted and sincere efforts by both countries to overcome mistrust and suspicions.

“Border management with mutual consultation has long been delayed,” Zardari said, adding, that the decision on it should no longer be delayed.

A decision delayed is not a problem avoided, it is rather crisis invited,” he said.

Zardari expressed the hope that the move to begin border fencing will be welcomed by all those wanting an end to militancy and to the counter- productive allegations of cross border incursions.

Also, addressing the party activists at the residence of PPP leader Haji Azizur Rehman Chan, Zardari vowed to give tough time to his political opponents in Punjab.

“Me, Bilawal and Aseefa are in the field now. Previously, our hands were tied. This time they (opponents) would come to know how the elections are contested”, he said.

The PPP chief claimed that his party never lost any election. “But we have been defeated only when there was an RO election”, he said in a sarcastic tone implying thereby that 2013 elections had been rigged by the Returning Officers on behest of the PML-N in league with the former Chief Justice of Pakistan Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry.

He hoped that coming elections will be transparent. “I will be sending party delegations to other parties to make the next elections transparent”, he said.

Zardari recalled that entire Lahore would shut down completely whenever Shaheed BB would come to this City.

“Now the history will repeat itself”, he added.

Earlier, a good number of party workers welcomed their leader at Chan’s residence. They were chanting the slogan: “Aik Zardari sab pe bhhari”.

“Your enthusiasm shows you are ready for another big contest”, Zardari responded to the charged workers.

He concluded his speech by raising a slogan: “Bhutto de narray wajan gey: Paitu saray nassun gey”. (The streets will echo once again with the slogans of Bhutto and the corrupt will flee from the scene).

Senior party leaders, including Ch Manzoor, Qayyum Soomro, Mustafa Nawaz Khokar and Samina Khalid Ghurki were present on the occasion.

Pir Ejaz, Zardari’s spiritual leader, also attended the reception.

Talking to the media, he said he had come to meet Asif Ali Zardari after a long time.

Zardari also visited the residence of late Kazim Khan, a PPP Senator who died last month. He condoled the death with the bereaved family and prayed for the departed soul.

Also, the PPP-P chief had a meeting with office-bearers of Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry here yesterday evening.

Speaking on the occasion, he said that the present rulers had got huge external loans at very high interest rate.

He said that government’s unwise policies were highly damaging the interests of the traders and the farming community.

Zardari lamented that fruits of cheap petroleum products in the international market had not yet reached the poor masses.