Fawad sees sweeping victory for PTI in next elections


—Criticizes opposition parties over anti-govt protests
—Distributes health cards among journalists in Lahore

From Abid Usman
LAHORE: Federal Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry on Sunday claimed that the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) will again come to power after winning the next general election in 2023.
Addressing a press conference in Lahore, the minister criticised the opposition parties over their anti-government protests, saying the opposition was divided. He said except for the PTI no political party will be able to field its candidates on all seats — 1,100 in total — in the next general elections.
Speaking about the inflation, the minister claimed the issue was linked to the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) governments as they took record loans during their respective tenures.
From 1947 to 2008, Rs6 trillion loans were taken by the Pakistani government, but from 2008 to 2018, the PPP and PML-N governments took loans worth Rs23 trillion, he said, adding that the PTI has paid $32 billion in debt servicing after coming into power.
According to Fawad, former PM Nawaz Sharif was living in one of the most expensive properties in London whereas former president Asif Ali Zardari rents out the most expensive apartments during his visits to London.
The federal minister said that the salaried class was being crushed under inflation because they didn’t get increments. “When expenditures exceed the income then inflation seems high,” Fawad claimed.
Speaking about health cards, he said that the Sehat Insaf Card will end discrimination in the health sector. He urged the private sector to invest in the healthcare sector for its betterment. The health card will benefit the working and middle-class segments the most, he added.
He further said that families of journalists and members of press clubs in Punjab and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa will be given health cards as well. Fawad said that journalists across Pakistan will be provided subsidised housing under the Naya Pakistan Housing Scheme.
Replying to a question, Fawad said that government will spend Rs700 billion on development in southern Balochistan.
Earlier, the information minister also distributed Sehat Insaf Cards among journalists at the Lahore Press Club.