Friday, August 19, 2022

No defeat of PML-N narrative in by-elections, says Khawaja Asif

No defeat of PML-N narrative in by-elections, says Khawaja Asif
July 21, 2022 Web Desk

ISLAMABAD (APP) - Minister for Defence Khawaja Muhammad Asif on Thursday said the Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N) set new tradition of impartiality in the Punjab by-elections held on July 17 to safeguard esteem of vote and democracy in the country.

Addressing a joint press conference with Finance Minister Miftah Ismail, he said that the PML-N leadership was using power as a public trust and did not indulge in victimization of political rival as their preceding Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leadership who maligned their prerogatives to target political opponents.

He observed that PTI chairman Imran Khan was giving government to 'thieves' in Punjab and sacrificing his 178 members of the Punjab Assembly (MPs) to satiate his lust for power.

“He is accusing us [PML-N] of horse trading and claiming a single stamp paper verified by the same advocate which is insane to be considered as a proof,” he alleged.

The minister claimed that it was the first election that bore no accusations of rigging, adding, “Similarly the Daska by-election is another example of free and fair election which has been won by Nausheen Iftikhar despite political maneuvering of the then PTI government.”

Chief Minister Hamza Shehbaz’s government had held the most fair elections in the 20 constituencies of the Punjab Assembly, Khawaja maintained. “The party popularity declines politically in elections as it’s part of the process because democracy does bears stagnation rather entails change. There is no defeat of our narrative and it has no impact on our image,” he added.

These elections, he said were contested on the basis of families or individuals and not parties like at one constituency a PML-N candidate contested independently due to difference of opinion. “The result of 20 electoral constituencies contest claim that PML-N government gave respect to vote and circumvent its tainting through any sort of intrusion.”

The PTI government thought out its tenure used the public trust for victimization of its rivals, adding, “I and Miftah are victims of that but we have no regrets and neither blame any.”

He mentioned that the former National Accountability Bureau (NAB) head possessed bad repute and he did not want to narrate it publicly. “We have upheld respect of vote and guarded the honour of democracy in the country on July 17,” he said.