FAISALABAD – Governor Punjab Sardar Muhammad Latif Khosa said on Tuesday that implementation of the Supreme Court verdict in the Asghar Khan case is a must, adding that it is required by the Constitution.

“Formation of Islami Jamhoori Ittehad was a conspiracy against the Constitution to disturb the electoral procedure,” he said while addressing a meeting at the Faisalabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry. He said that it was well known now that the politics of those violated the Constitution will end soon. He said that the apex court had not discussed anything regarding President Zardari’s dual offices.

He said that terrorism was a legacy of civil and military dictatorship. He said that the Taliban were promoted by Ziaul Haq. “We must pool our energy to get rid of the menace,” he added. He also explained the efforts made by his party’s previous and present democratic governments to increase industrial and economic activities in the country.

The governor said, “We must sit together to resolve these problems.” He said that he had earlier arranged a meeting of business community with the petroleum minister and would again act as a spokesman of the business community to resolve their problems.

He said, “Punjab was consuming 60% of gas whereas it was producing only 6%. According to 18th Amendment it was the first right of the producing province to consume maximum gas and provide only surplus to the other provinces. This Amendment was a stumbling block in equitable distribution of gas. We have already made efforts to get maximum gas for the Punjab and we are ready to even enact another amendment for equitable distribution of natural resources.”

He pointed out that the United Arab Emirates had gifted a 350 MW power plant to Faisalabad which could be installed and commissioned in consultation with the local businessmen. The governor then invited the businessmen of Faisalabad to sit with him in order to resolve the energy, gas and other centre-related issues. He discussed at length the successive turmoil in the political history of Pakistan which led to the economic failures. He said that the federal government fully acknowledged the economic contribution of Faisalabad to the national development but the people have to understand that undemocratic forces hijacked the economic growth in 80s by eliminating the democratic governments.

Regarding energy crisis, he said that last dam was conceived and built by ZA Bhatto in 1974 and after that not even a single MW was added to the national energy system. About international flights from Faisalabad Airport, he pledged to arrange a meeting with the defence minister to start international flights from the city. He also pledged to establish Wapda University in Wapda Academy Faisalabad.

Earlier in his welcome address, FCCI President Mian Zahid Aslam pointed out the loadshedding and war against-terrorism were main problems affecting the industrial and economic growth of the country. He said that the government should make concerted efforts to provide a congenial atmosphere in the country in order to attract foreign investment.

He was also critical of the unfair and un inequitable distribution of national resources and demanded immediate intervention by the federal government to ensure equitable distribution of gas and electricity to different federating units.

He also reiterated its previous demand to exempt Faisalabad industry from gas loadshedding. He said that the government should play its constitutional role in formulation of business friendly-policies in consultation with all stakeholders.

Later, President FCCI presented Chamber Souvenir to the governor while they also exchanged gifts. Muhammad Boota, the vice president of the chamber thanked the audience for their participation in the meeting.