LAHORE: The caretaker Punjab Government has negated speculation regarding ousted prime minister Nawaz Sharif’s health, revealing that according to the medical board his preliminary medical reports were satisfactory.
According to the government, demand of former chief minister Shehbaz to shift Sharif to a hospital would be reviewed on advice of the medical board and fulfilling all legal formalities. It was further revealed that an air-conditioner has been provided to the jailed, deposed premier in his room besides an additional bracket fan while permission has also been given to supply him homemade food.
These views were expressed by provincial ministers Zia Haider Rizvi, Shaukat Javed and Ahmed Waqas Riaz, while addressing a joint press conference at Directorate General Public Relations, today. The provincial law minister Zia Haider Rizvi said leveling allegation on impartiality of the government by political parties was part of their election campaign.
Rizvi further stated that those raising allegations should go to the court, instead of coming out on roads. “If we start answering to accusations in their style, we have a lot from the previous government to reveal,” the minister added. He further maintained today’s press conference was being carried out on the directions of the caretaker chief minister.
Another provincial minister Shaukat Javed briefed the media regarding election arrangements and said that 47,473 polling stations have been established in Punjab out of which 6,000 are declared sensitive. Four military officials have been appointed in each polling station out of which two are deployed inside the polling booth while the other two will guard from the outside.
“Security staff has nothing to do with the polling process, they will only provide security to people” told Javed adding that most of the magistrate power will remain with the presiding officers, however, Army officers can also use some powers.
While responding to questions, the provincial ministers negated reports carried out by PML-N leaders that Sharif was forced to sleep on the floor on his first night of jail. They said that during the paper work for release of charpoi, he had already slept on the mattress on his own and demanded not to be disturbed for the night. They said that Sharif was provided better facilities than normal prisoners.
They said that it was only after he arrived he demanded a better class for himself and the process to do so was immediately started. They further said that on his arrival, he was provided with a separate cell, fitted with bracket fans, mist fans and an air-conditioner later on the request of his doctor.
Talking about election preparations, the ministers further revealed that the interim government during its tenure registered 832 FIRs for maintaining law & order as well as violation of the electoral code of conduct. Out of these FIRs, 199 were registered against PML-N workers, 192 against PTI, 23 against PPP workers, 10 against MMA and 195 FIRs were registered against independent candidates.
The provincial ministers later inaugurated media city setup in the DGPR for provision of timely information and results during the polls. According to the ECP code of conduct, media persons would not be allowed to take camera and mobile phone inside the polling station while journalists cannot remain inside the booths for more than 10 minutes.
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