MULTAN/BAHAWALPUR - President Asif Ali Zardari on Tuesday said the masses wanted to get their problems solved, but some undemocratic forces were trying to draw people’s attention away from the real issues.

Addressing delegations of PPP workers, leaders and parliamentarians here at Gillani House, the president added that no one could trap the masses as they knew the government was sincere to them. He said the democratic government kept striving to offer a considerable relief to the masses despite challenges and tough conditions. “Our allies, friends and the people extended full support to us and we executed several mega projects across the country,” he added.

He said the government not only fulfilled its promise by tabling Bahawalpur South Punjab Province resolution in the parliament but also exposed the anti-province parties. “The people will reject them in the coming elections,” he hoped. He said the resolution would prove an important milestone in the creation of the new province.

Referring to South Punjab, he said this area had been enslaved in the past, but PPP launched a number of projects in this region to boost economic, social and agricultural activities. “These projects will offer new job opportunities to the residents of this region,” he claimed. He said that 95 per cent projects had been accomplished while the remaining would be completed very soon. He said PPP would eliminate all deprivations and backwardness from South Punjab after coming to power again. He said a separate province was imperative to develop South Punjab and PPP would achieve the goal of the new province.

Stressing the need for promoting the culture of self-reliance, he said it was imperative to achieve a respectable place in comity of nations. He claimed the government had adopted a number of steps to generate resources for development projects and achieve economic stability. “This is an important step towards a bright future,” he pointed out. 03214091365

He said the democratic government was about to complete its five-year term during which it paid special attention to the uplift of undeveloped and far-flung areas. He added that despite tough conditions, the government did not let anyone hamper public welfare projects. He said the government felt proud that it had met all of its promises.

He claimed the govt had taken revolutionary steps despite a highly volatile situation to solve the problems of masses.

Speaking on this occasion, former prime minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gillani said that it was because of personal interest of President Zardari that record number of projects were launched and accomplished in South Punjab. He said the president was very serious in translating Shaheed Mohtarma’s Saraiki vision into reality.

Earlier, the president inaugurated Rasheedabad Flyover and Syedwala Bridge on the River Ravi.

Meanwhile, President Asif Ali Zardari, while speaking at the residence of Punjab Governor Makhdoom Syed Ahmad Mehmood in Jamal Din Wali, Rahim Yar Khan, said that focusing on the vision of Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and Shaheed Benazir Bhutto, the PPP-led government was focusing on the less developed areas. He added since the present government was aware of the sense of deprivation among the people of South Punjab, it was taking affective steps to ameliorate their lot and had launched many development projects in this area.

He lamented that during the last 65 years, no government took concrete steps for South Punjab that was why the sitting government was focusing on this area and supporting South Punjab or Bahawalpur Province and formed a commission in this regard.

Punjab Governor Syed Ahmad Mehmood said in his welcome address that he was thankful to President Zardari for reposing trust in him. He said PPP had strong roots in all the four provinces and gave the impression of federation.

He said if the PPP government came to power again in the upcoming elections and succeeded in making government in the Punjab, it would focus on the development of this area and allocate huge funds for this area.

District Bar Association President Habib Paris along with other lawyers called on the president and briefed him about the problems being faced by their community. Zardari assured them of solving their problems and announced a grant of Rs 5 million for District Bar Association Rahim Yar Khan.

Zardari reached Ashraf Sugar Mills Bahawalpur at 5:50pm on Tuesday by a helicopter and was welcome by PBC Chairman Zaka Ashraf and legislators of the party. Former Prime Minister Former Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gillani also reached Bahawalpur by a special plane and went to Ashraf Sugar Mills where he met Zardari and exchanged thoughts regarding the upcoming elections and political situation of South Punjab.