Bilawal addresses a press conference at the media cell of Bilawal House, Karachi. Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah is seen in the background. Image Credit: Supplied

Karachi: Chairman of Pakistan Peoples’ Party Bilawal Bhutto Zardari has expressed fear that the federation at present is making an attempt to occupy islands of Sindh through an unconstitutional presidential ordinance as in future it will be the turn for coastal belt and towns of the province to be occupied in the same authoritarian manner.

Speaking at a press conference here at Bilawal House, the PPP chairman demanded the federal government to immediately withdraw the recent presidential ordinance promulgated to establish the Pakistan Islands’ Development Authority.

Fishing policy

He said that the presidential ordinance was illegal, unconstitutional, and insulting to the local fishermen. He said that fishermen of the area had already been annoyed at the fishing policy of the federal government as the present attempt to occupy their islands had further irked them.

“We can’t remain silent about the attempt made by the federal government to occupy the islands of Sindh and Balochistan through a presidential ordinance,” he said.

He said that no more talks could be held with the federation on the issue of development of islands off the coastal belt of Karachi till the time the ordinance was withdrawn.

He said that they would not allow an inch of the land of Sindh to be annexed by the federation through any unconstitutional mean. “Today, islands are being occupied through promulgation of the ordinance in the dead of the night as tomorrow they will occupy our cities,” he said.

Accept mistakes

“The entire province with a unanimous voice has condemned this move as the government should also accept its mistake and take back the ordinance,” said the PPP chairman.

He said that a cricketer-turned-prime minister of the country had no understanding at all that his unconstitutional acts had caused much damage to the federal system of the country.

The PPP chairman demanded that the upcoming general elections in Gilgit-Baltistan (GB) should be conducted in the most transparent and fair manner.

He said that he would go to every district of the GB to personally monitor the election process in the region.

Bilawal said that if any rigging or wrongdoing was committed in the polls of GB then he along with the people of the region would come to Islamabad for a sit-in.

He said that any malpractice in the upcoming GB’s polls would have far-reaching consequences for the peace and progress of the entire Pakistan.

He also demanded that all the political prisoners in the country should be immediately set free.

The PPP chairman also cautioned Prime Minister Imran Khan against unduly implicating army in his political statements while duly regarding the fact that military as being the national institution doesn’t belong to any particular political party as it belonged to the entire country.