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No one will be allowed to support terrorists: PM Shehbaz

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THARPARKAR: Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif Wednesday said no one was above the law and would not be allowed to support terrorists and use them as shields.

Condemning yesterday’s terrorist incidents targeting military personnel, the premier said that the malicious agenda of Pakistan’s enemies would be foiled.

The prime minister’s comments came during his visit to Tharparkar’s Islamkot area for the inauguration event of two coal-fired power plants with a capacity of 1,650 megawatt of electricity generation.

PM Shehbaz said the projects — including the 1,320 megawatt Shanghai Electric power plant and 330MW Thal Nova power plant — would turn the desert into an economic hub and annually generate 11.24 billion units of low-cost electricity.

Through the direct investment of $3.53 billion into these projects, which were abandoned during the last four years and are now operational on PM Shehbaz’s directives, the production of coal-based electricity in Thar will increase up to 3,300MW.

He added that it was a moment of celebration for the entire country that Tharparkar was getting a source of basic facilities for life and also dismissed the criticism by a section of people who stand against Thar’s coal, terming it a blessing with immense potential for power resources that needed to be untapped.

PM Shehbaz expressed confidence that the journey of progress would spread across the country and would strengthen the national economy.

The premier said that the power turbines would be installed at the projects to generate electricity by April 30, which would be supplied to the rest of the country through transmission lines.

He expressed gratitude to the government of China for extending support to Pakistan in carrying out development projects under the CPEC.

He vowed that the coalition government would put in all efforts to materialise the CPEC projects, with the agriculture sector as its next phase and announced a hospital for the locals to provide them with medical facilities at their doorsteps.

Also present at the occasion, Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari said the project could be materialised as the federal government and the Sindh government worked in harmony to facilitate the masses.

He expressed satisfaction over the level of cooperation between Pakistan and China on carrying out development projects, which he said, had resulted in the improvement of health and educational facilities.

Federal Minister for Power Khurram Dastagir Khan said the pluralist government of PM Shehbaz was committed to providing civic amenities to people across the country.

He said that under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), the development of indigenous resources was a big step towards self-reliance and was also valuable for the foreign exchange of the country.

Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah said the political and economic interests of Pakistan and China were aligned for the benefit of the two nations.

He termed the completion of the Thar Coal project a success for all stakeholders from both countries.

Chinese Charge d’Affaires Pang Chunxue said the commercial operation of the Thar coal project ranked high among other coal-fired power plants. She assured all possible cooperation by the government of China in the field of development and progress.

Shanghai Electric Power Company Limited is the executing agency of the projects, while the Ministry of Energy (Power Division) is the coordinating ministry, and Private Power and Infrastructure Board is the supervising agency.

Pakistan

As PM Shehbaz creates committees to address the PPP’s issues, a thaw is evident.

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In response to the issues brought up by PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari during their meeting, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has established committees.

The PPP heavyweights and PML-N leaders met after Bilawal did not attend the June 12 National Assembly session when the budget for the upcoming fiscal year 2024–25 was unveiled.

The PPP chief’s concerns were mostly addressed by the prime minister at the meeting, when he also ordered committees to look into his grievances.

Sources claim that on Friday, the committees would undertake discussions to settle the differences between the ruling parties.

Bilawal once voiced concern over the PPP’s lack of faith in the budget. He emphasised that the PML-N is not carrying out the arrangement that the PPP had made to support the government.

Additionally, he charged that the Punjabi government was erecting obstacles in the way of the PPP’s advancement in the region.

For the welfare of the people as well as the growth and prosperity of the nation, Prime Minister Shehbaz urged all political parties to cooperate.

Yousuf Raza Gilani, the Senate Chairman, Raja Pervaiz Ashraf, Syed Khursheed Shah, Syed Naveed Qamar, and Sherry Rehman were among the PPP delegation members.

Speaking at the event, the premier stated that additional talks over the budget for 2024–2025 were held with the Pakistan Peoples Party. He claimed that although the stock market had seen an unprecedented boom, the economy was exhibiting encouraging signs.

He claimed that the new fiscal year’s budget included measures to help the average person. He promised that committees will continue to be used for further consultation.

Afterwards, the prime minister hosted a dinner reception in honour of the PPP delegation.

In attendance were Speaker of the National Assembly Sardar Ayaz Sadiq, Deputy Prime Minister Ishaq Dar, Federal Ministers for Planning and Finance and Revenue Muhammad Aurangzeb and Ahsan Iqbal, Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Attaullah Tarar, Prime Minister’s Advisor on Political Affairs Rana Sanaullah, Minister of State for Finance and Revenue Ali Pervez Malik, and former federal minister Khawaja Saad Rafique.

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The court hinted at a June 27 ruling in the Imran-Bushra iddat nikah case.

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Imran Khan and his wife Bushra Bibi filed petitions in the iddat nikah issue, and a municipal court in Islamabad has intimated that it may rule on their cases by June 27.

Beyond this period, the court made it clear that no more time will be granted for arguments. “Even if no party appears, the court will take a decision based on the record of the case,” it said.

Supporters of PTI stood outside the courtroom during today’s hearing to show their support for Bushra Bibi.

Further Meetings Both Bushra Bibi and Imran Khan begged for their sentences to be suspended during the session, which was chaired by Judge Afzal Majoka.

The PTI founder was defended by attorney Salman Akram Raja, and Bushra Bibi was represented by Usman Riaz Gill. Khawar Maneka’s representative, Zahid Asif Chaudhry, wrote a letter.

Attorney Salman Akram Raja fervently pleaded in favour of the sentence suspension. “This case is, in fact, an abhorrent assault on a Pakistani woman’s chastity. Today, the court was presented with this entire discussion. The Supreme Court has issued multiple rulings. Each and every witness has admitted to lying to this court. “It has been made clear in front of the court,” Raja declared outside the building, wishing for the administration of justice.

The court made the observation that a judgement on the applications for sentence suspension needed to be made by June 27 at the latest.

The court stated that Salman Akram Raja’s arguments were only partially heard today in its written ruling for the day. Zahid Asif also sought for more time to prepare, and Usman Riaz Gill, Bushra Bibi’s attorney, asked for more time to make his case.

The next hearing is set for June 25 by the court. Using the available records, the decision about the applications for sentence suspension will be made before June 27, regardless of the attendance of all parties.

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“Awaam Pakistan”: These influential politicians are joining the new party led by Abbasi

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The former finance minister revealed in a statement that Abbasi will be the first convener of Awaam Pakistan, which will begin next month.

Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, a former prime minister, will lead the Awaam Pakistan Party.

Awaam Pakistan will include former PML-N leaders Sardar Mehtab Ahmed Khan Abbasi, Javed Abbasi, Syed Zaeem Hussain Qadri, Zahid Binnouri, Rana Zahid Tauseef, and Sardar Anwar Soomro, according to Miftah’s announcement.

The former MQM MNA Sheikh Salahuddin and former health minister Dr. Zafar Mirza will also join the Abbasi-led party.

On July 6, the AP launch ceremony will take place in Islamabad.

From August 2017 to May 2018, Abbasi, the former prime minister, held the position.

Given his disagreements with the PML-N’s upper echelons, it is important to note that Shahid Khaqan Abbasi had made multiple allusions to the possibility of starting a new party.

The former prime minister filed the necessary paperwork to the poll election commission in April of this year in order to register a new political party. He and the PML-N broke apart after a year of disagreements.

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