JUN 26, 2018: The former chief minister Sindh and senior PPP leader, Murad Ali Shah, on Tuesday criticized the former chief minister Punjab and PML-N President, Shahbaz Sharif, for campaigning in Karachi with “tall claims” about what he [Sharif] can do for the metropolis — the country’s largest city with more than 20 million population and in need of urgent attention to alleviate water shortages, provision for safe drinking water, adequate power supply, waste management and mass transit.
Earlier in the day, Shahbaz had spoken at a campaign rally in Karachi, promising to address the city’s many issues if it gave PML-N the mandate to do so. Shahbaz is contesting from NA-249 constituency which has a mixed populace from all over the country, and competing with PPP, PTI and MQM candidates.
Murad said the PML-N government in the Center had refused to give Sindh its due share in water, power and the National Finance Commission [award].
Chiding Shahbaz for making tall claims about solving Karachi’s perennial problems, Murad said, “We had requested the federal government to give separate share of water to Karachi because people from all over Pakistan are living here, but they rejected our request in the Council of Common Interests meeting”. “Now Shahbaz Sharif is claiming he can provide water to the people of Karachi within the next three years.”
Shah also accused the PML-N government of deliberately resorting to prolonged gas load-shedding in Karachi “so that industrial units operating in the city could be shifted to Punjab”.
“The PML-N government tried to destroy industrial economy of the province but it was the PPP government which fought the case for industrialists and controlled gas load-shedding to some extent,” he said.
He also complained that the PML-N government had given mega projects to Lahore, but totally ignored Karachi — “though the federal government kept generating huge revenues from this city”.
“After our hue and cry, you [the PML-N government], finally gave Karachi one BRT Green Bus project. But again, it fell victim to your disinterest, which is why it has not been completed in four years. This is the attitude of the PML-N leadership and the government,” he complained.