Pakistna Peoples Party Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari on Tuesday decried what he said was a culture of using influence to pressure courts into giving biased judgments against political rivals, while calling for the judiciary and lawmakers to bring a stop to such practices.
"We think the system of making phone calls [to pressure courts] is wrong today and was wrong then and in the future, no one should have the courage to make such an attempt."
His statement comes in the wake of another controversey surrounding a leaked audio tape, allegedly between the country's former top judge and another jurist, in which the former instructs the latter not to allow bail to PML-N leaders before the 2018 general elections.
"We are not happy at all that audio tapes are emerging against those who would threaten and pressure courts over phone calls to hand sentences of 20 years' [imprisonment] to Shaheed Bibi and Zardari and to seize their family property," Bilawal told a rally in Peshawar.
He also warned Prime Minister Imran Khan to realise ''the gravity of the situation' while urging him to stop practising undemocratic politics.
"Otherwise, he will suffer the same fate as that of his predecessors," he told his supporters in Peshawar.
Bilawal rejected the government’s idea to conduct the next polls through electronic voting machines (EVM), saying that the PPP had previously rejected a similar sort of idea like the result transmission system (RTS) which would facilitate vote manipulation.
He added that the PPP lawyers were working to prepare cases against the EVMs.
Bilawal alleged that the incumbent government was playing a game with overseas Pakistanis under the garb of electoral reforms, while calling the PPP a “representative of expatriates”.
The PPP chairman added that current high inflox from remittances were actually the outcome of PPP policies of yore, including passport issuance at the time when PPP founder Zulfikar Ali Bhutto was in power.
However, he alleged that PM Imran was planning to risk expatriates and their right to vote.
Criticising the current state of the country, the PPP chairman accused the government of bringing anti-people policies and succumbing to the IMF demands.
“People are bearing the brunt of ‘tabdeeli’ of the government,” he said, adding that the PTI-led government policies have adversely affected people.
He lamented the rapid increase in sugar and gas prices, expressing concerns over the prevailing policies.
“PPP will bring people-friendly policies. I won’t make false promises, history is evident that the PPP tenure has provided a lot of opportunities,” he added.
He denounced the government’s apparent plans to change SBP’s autonomy.
Bilawal also announced that the PPP would take to the streets in December to protest against inflation, petrol price hike and gas shortage as part of its public engagement campaign.
“On Dec 10, PPP workers across the country will protest against the constant increase on POL prices. On Dec 17, our workers in our district headquarters will protest against gas price hike, he said.
Bilawal added that the PPP would announce its future course of action at another rally on Dec 27, which would mark the death anniversary of his mother, the late Benazir Bhutto.
Pakistan Peoples Party Chairman Bilawal Bhutto on Tuesday slammed the government for offering an olive branch to the banned Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan, saying that despite winning a war against terrorism the government was planning to sign an agreement with the outlawed group.
“The same terrorists had killed claimed responsibility for the Army Public School attack [in 2014]. They killed members of our security forces, women, and children and the government is trying to sign an agreement with such people,” the scion of the Bhutto dynasty said in a rally in Peshawar, K-P, held to celebrate the party's foundation day.
“Who are they [PM Imran Khan and FM Shah Mahmood Qureshi] to say or sign such an agreement," he asked, while pointing out that there could be no compromise with those who spilled the blood of soldiers and the people of Pakistan
He asserted that the people of Pakistan would never accept any such agreement with the banned group unless those responisble for the murder of women and children were held to account and convicted by a court of law.