Lahore: Chairman Pakistan People’s Party, Bilawal Bhutto Zardari addressing a workers’ convention of the Party in Jati Umra, Lahore said that he is grateful to Chaudhary Abdul Ghafoor for not only joining the PPP but contesting the election on its ticket. The PPP will run its full-fledged electoral campaign in NA-125 and will be triumphant.
Chairman Bilawal said that the PPP is contesting the elections from every constituency. It is contesting the elections to win. The workers of the Party have to work hard day and night. We do not believe in the politics of hatred and division, and will take our manifesto to the people, and contest the elections based on that, as done by our ancestors, Quaid-e-Awam Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and Shaheed Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto. The Jiyalas have to go to every doorstep and apprise the masses of the ‘10 promises’ the Party has made. Our 10-point agenda and the economic plan it contains should be conveyed to the people. We have to make the people of Raiwand understand that if they wish to form a government of the people, labourers, farmers and students, then PPP is the sole option, not the PML-N or PTI.
The first question you have to ask the people is whether they have got buying power, and the answer will not be affirmative. Our first promise with the people of Pakistan is to double their income within five years, as an effort to increase their buying power. This is our first promise and target. The second question that you need to ask the people is whether they can afford to pay their electricity bills. Our second promise is to provide 300 units of electricity free of cost to the downtrodden masses of the country. Our third promise is to provide free, quality education so that every child has the opportunity to learn. Only the PPP can do this. It is the only party that has established education institutions in every province, from Kashmir to Karachi. Our fourth promise is to provide free of cost, quality healthcare as we have done in different districts of Sindh, including NICVD, Gambat, SIUT etc. These are not mere claims, like the PML-N and PTI.
We have done this in Sindh, and wish to serve the people of the entire country in the same manner. Has the government given any free-of-cost hospital in Raiwand? When they face cardiac issues, they run to London. At that time too, we had told them that we have established NICVD and they should have gone there. When they face such issues again, which they ought to after February 8, they can access the same medical treatment in Raiwand, when the PPP establishes hospitals here. Our fifth promise is to build three million houses for the less fortunate and give the women ownership, as we are doing in Sindh. Imran Khan had promised five million houses to the people but could not even build one.
We are following the footsteps of Shaheed Quaid-e-Awam, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto who introduced the ‘5 Marla Scheme’ and Shaheed Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto who brought the ‘7 Marla Scheme’. We also wish to give ownership to those living in temporary housing all over the country so they too can feel the security of having a place to call home. We will not only provide them with houses but also regularise temporary accommodation. Our sixth promise is to expand the revolutionary, internationally acclaimed Benazir Income Support Programme introduced by President Zardari to incorporate education, employment and health. We wish to restore all the features of the programme that faced hindrances during the Sharif and Khan tenures in the past, who tried to snatch its name and rob the people of their rights.
Our seventh promise is to introduce the ‘Kissan Card’ for our farmers, so that the small farmers of the country can directly reap the benefits of the subsidies that are otherwise enjoyed by mill owners and industries. Similarly, we wish to bring a ‘Mazdoor Card’ for our labourers so that they can attain financial and health benefits, and get their due rights. We wish to support the youth, that constitute 70% of the country’s population. They face immense challenges during this tumultuous time, especially when it comes to getting jobs after completing their education.
They are told that they do not have the experience to work despite having the required qualifications. We wish to introduce the ‘Youth Card’ and assist these youngsters financially for a year as they look for employment opportunities. Through this card, we will also provide facilities to the students, especially scholarships and student loans for the deserving youngsters. Our last point, which we believe is imperative is the ‘Bhook Mitao’ programme which we wish to initiate at the level of the union councils, because with the way in which inflation, unemployment and poverty have increased in an unprecedented manner, so has hunger. The PPP will derive a solution for this as well.
Chairman Bilawal expressed his gratitude to the Party workers, and directed them to take the PPP’s ‘10-point’ manifesto to every doorstep and make them understand that the PPP wishes to put an end to the traditional politics of hate and division. The PPP wishes to introduce a new form of politics, so that we can change the fate of the people. We do not consider any party our competition, enemy or opponent. Our only rival is the poverty, inflation and unemployment, which can only be defeated by choosing the symbol of the arrow and making the PPP victorious.