OKARA - Federal Minister for Kashmir Affairs Manzoor Wattoo asked the government to decrease diesel prices here on Thursday.

"In this regard, the government had started thinking seriously to cut down prices of petroleum products," he said, adding that the PPP-led was the poor and cultivators-friendly government. He assured a public meeting the prices would be decreased. Wattoo said plans had been devised to murder him but Allah Almighty kept him safe against these conspiracies.

He also alleged that the Punjab government was utilising Rs50 billion funds approved for rural areas on the Ferozepur Road project in Lahore. He claimed that the PPP would win the forthcoming general elections and will government in the Punjab as well. He also termed the Punjab chief minister an enemy of villagers. He was of the view that with these funds, all the roads across the province could be constructed.

"Now, no party is going to make alliance with the PML-N," he said while addressing a gathering in Mauza Baghian Okara. Wattoo said Pakistan is at present confronting multiple challenges and also fighting terrorists. Attack on Kamra Airbase is an action of the Muslims' enemies, he said. The government with the help of the people would foil their designs," he added.

 "I never thought of taking vindictive actions and will continue serving the nation. The Punjab government has obliterated billions of rupees in the name of Sasti Roti Scheme and laptops," he said. He said the government would complete its tenure.

He said, "President Zardari wants reconciliation with other parties. He has tolerance against any highhandedness. After national elections in 2013, there will be a government of alliances. Come to power in Punjab, we will turn Punjab into abode of peace. The poor will be given jobs and rights of ownership." MNA Khurram Jehangir Khan Wattoo also addressed the gathering.

HOUSE LOOTED: Eight dacoits fled away with cash and valuables from a house in New Abadi of Rajuwal after shooting and injuring two members of a family for offering resistance.

Ashfaq Ahmad's house was targeted by the dacoits who held the family on gunpoint and made off with Rs70,000, gold ornaments worth hundreds of thousands of rupees, weapons including a pistol, a pump action and 12 bore rifle. On resistance, the robbers opened fire. As a result, Ashfaq's brother Zafar Iqbal and an 8-year-old child were wounded. The injured have been shifted to a hospital.