Lahore: Leader of Pakistan Muslim League-N and Member National Assembly Ahsan Iqbal has said that PML-N is accused of getting two terms in office, but the fact remains, that had we been allowed to complete our five years, we would have been standing nationally at par with Malaysia and Turkey. He said Pakistan was punished for turning the country into an atomic power, due to which a democratically-elected government was overthrown at the hands of dictator Gen. Musharraf.
He said by conducting nuclear tests, Nawaz Sharif proved that the decisions of Pakistan would not be made in London or America, but in Islamabad. He said that, as a result of wrong decisions made by dictator, we have now become mere pawn in the hands of foreign forces. Ahsan Iqbal said that in an era of corruption, the provincial government of Punjab is executing its programmes with complete transparency and merit. He said Shahbaz Sharif Scholarship Programme is the biggest educational initiative in the world, under which more than 40 thousand brilliant and deserving students have been disbursed scholarships, worth Rs.2 billion.
Ahsan Iqbal was addressing a ceremony held at Awan-e-Iqbal under the auspices of Shahbaz Sharif Scholarship Programme, for disbursement of scholarships among brilliant students, here today. Special Assistant Zaeem Hussain Qadri, Members National and Provincial Assembly, Vice Chairman of Punjab Educational Endowment Fund Dr. Amjad Saqib, Vice Chancellors of Universities, teachers and a large number of girl and boy students were present on the occasion. Addressing the ceremony, Ahsan Iqbal said that, few myopic politicians are talking about despondency, lack of trust and negative feedback to galvanize their politics, however, we would have to bring our younger generation out of despondency and lack of confidence, in order to impart hope and trust in them, so that the younger generation could make positive decisions about their own future. He said that, on the one hand, there is a culture of ‘Safarish’ and bribery, but Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif has disbursed merit-based scholarships worth Rs.2 billion among 40 thousand brilliant and deserving girl and boy students, while one lakh 25 thousands laptops have been distributed among students who have achieved academic distinction. He lamented that accusations of corruption were made on purchase of laptops, however, Punjab government gave all its relevant record to the Transparency International, which reported that no corruption in distribution of laptops has been found, and this programme is the best of its kind in terms of transparency.
Ahsan Iqbal said that there was a time when former Prime Minister of India Narsimah Rao termed the economic programme of Pakistan as splendid, and asked Nawaz Sharif to arrange meeting of Pakistani Finance Minister with their then Finance Minister Manmohan Singh. He said Pakistan’s currency used to be stronger than that of India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, while today the situation is that Pakistan’s currency is weaker than even Nepal. He said that India wanted to import electricity from Pakistan, but today Pakistan is talking about importing electricity from India. Ahsan Iqbal said that, during the rule of Nawaz Sharif, Indian Prime Minister visited Minar-e-Pakistan and announced that he has come for peace in the region, but today the situation is completely different. He said that foreign forces have imposed Gorbachoves on Pakistan to paralyze it economically, therefore we would have to get rid of these Gorbachoves. Ahsan Iqbal said that now a person who has never contested even a town committee election is talking about bringing change in 90 days. He said that national economy has been destroyed due to wrong policies of federal government, while loadshedding has shaken the country to its roots.
Addressing on this occasion, Vice Chairman Punjab Educational Endowment Fund Dr. Amjad Saqib threw a detailed light on Punjab Educational Endowment Fund programme. He said that, so far, scholarships, worth Rs.2 billions, have been distributed among 40 thousand girl and boy students. He said that the name of the author of these 40 thousand stories is Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif, and the name of the book is the Punjab Educational Endowment Fund. He said that Chief Minister has accorded concrete shape to his dreams. He said, in term of transparency and merit, the Punjab Educational Endowment Fund has been awarded Best Management Practices Award by famous educational institution of the country LUMS, and George Mason University of USA.