Pakistan is endowed with fertile land, four seasons for producing variety of crops, deep seaports, and strategic location; and over and above hard working people who can make it one of the most important countries in the comity of nations. No doubt, the destiny of a nation depends on the determination of its people; but there has to be a leader with vision, courage and wisdom to inspire them to unite in their struggle for safeguarding the sovereignty and independence of their country, and to put it on the path of progress and prosperity. Shahbaz Sharif is indeed such leader, who stands above heads and shoulders if compared with leaders of other political parties. He is a great administrator, energetic, visionary and reformist leader, having the capacity, will and determination to take Pakistan to new highs.

In 2015, in an edition of “The Economist”, Chief Minister Punjab Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif was hailed as an energetic politician and a reformist leader who was far ahead of his peers in landmark initiatives in the education sector and spreading education amongst the poor segments of society across Punjab. The journal had admired Shahbaz Sharif’s initiatives to spread literacy, and Punjab government’s policy to build new schools to achieve 100 percent enrolment target for school-age children by the year 2018 by taking the private sector on board to achieve the objective. Chief Minister’s initiative of the Punjab Education Foundation (PEF) for setting up schools in the rural areas for the spread of education among the poor strata of society has earned him laurels. The Economist’ report is a testament to his futuristic and visionary leadership and an apt tribute to his education-friendly policies.

He is not only revered in Pakistan but abroad also. During his visit to China immediately after assuming office in 2008 as CM, he had impressed Chinese investors who promised to invest in Punjab in various projects. They did honor their commitments, as many projects are under completion. His interaction with German and Turkish leadership produced prodigious results. He had planned a number of projects for infrastructure development including construction of an elevated expressway, Ring Road and mass transit system in the provincial metropolis to cope up with the traffic problems. All these projects have either been completed or are in their completion phases such as Orange Train. Mian Shahbaz Sharif seems to have a lot more political acumen and the vision if compared with other leaders of the PML-N, and for that matter the leaders of other provinces and political parties also.

He had outlined in 2008 three top priorities of the new provincial government i.e. ensuring the rule of law, improvement and promotion of education and provision of appropriate health facilities to the people. Of course, improved law and order situation gives confidence to the local as well as foreign investors and the people at large. Shahbaz Sharif therefore took measures that resulted in making Punjab’s law and order situation better than other three provinces of Pakistan. Being a visionary, Shahbaz Sharif knew that education is the prime factor in economic and social well being of any nation. It is a strategic tool in nation-building through skill development and vision enhancement; and it also directly contributes towards economic growth. No wonder, Germany having been destroyed in the World War II was able to quickly rebuild its economy because of its governments had laid solid foundation for education.

Shahbaz Sharif announced a comprehensive package of far-reaching reforms for removing hurdles in the laws for bringing women into mainstream of national development. Punjab government distributed laptops worth Rs.8 billion among talented boy and girl students, and has allocated more funds for the same purpose. It has to be mentioned that Punjab’s population is more than population of three provinces put together. It means he successfully administrated more than half of Pakistan. He does not compromise on merit, and his policy of recruitment in various departments, especially police, is based on merit and merit alone. He deserves accolades for early completion of mega projects and in a transparent manner. In April 2017, the Chinese delegation of investors led by Ren Zhineng, chairman of the Board and Party Secretary of Chengdu Xingcheng Investment Group visited Pakistan.

On the occasion, he said that he and members of the delegation were much impressed by the speed, transparency and quality in the development projects in Punjab under the supervision of Shehbaz Sharif. He said that in his country the classical Chinese axiom ‘Shenzhen speed’ has been replaced by “Punjab speed”, which is not only a recognition to the expeditious completion of projects in Punjab but also a confidence in the Punjab leadership. He said they have personally seen the speedy completion of the projects and transparency therein. Of course, he is symbol of good governance.