Chief Minister Sindh Syed Qaim Ali Shah addressing the Hyderabad Division PPP workers meeting at Shoro village. — APP

HYDERABAD: Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah has said that the Sindh government sticks to its point of view over gas issue that imported LNG from Qatar should be utilised where there is a shortage and Sindh should use its gas as per constitutional provisions.

He was replying to questions of reporters at the residence of Fisheries Minister Jam Khan Shoro on Sunday. Sindh PPP general secretary Senator Taj Haider, Jam Khan Shoro, divisional information secretary Dr Tahseen Shaikh, Hyderabad district PPP president Zahid Bhurgari and Abdul Jabbar Khan were also present.

The CM was critical of the fact that meetings of the Council of Common Interests (CCI) were not held as required in the Constitution which said it had to meet quarterly. But, he said, in the past two years, only three meetings were held.

He said the LNG was being imported from Qatar and Sindh had lodged its protest with the federal government over it.

He said this subject was covered under Constitution’s schedule-II. Under schedule-I, federal subjects were placed. The CCI’s subjects were covered under scheduled two and it was the CCI which took decision on them, he said. But it met only on three occasions in the last two years. “We have protested over gas [issue] in the CCI and recorded it before the [federal] minister,” he said.

He said Sindh wanted the LNG should be used in areas where shortages were reported and Sindh should use its own gas as per constitutional guarantees. Out of the 70 per cent gas, Sindh supplied 35 to 40 per cent to other parts while 25 to 30 per cent was used in Sindh. It was due to shortage of gas in Sindh that it faced prolonged loadshedding. In rural areas loadshedding was seen for 18 hours, he said.
After the 21st constitutional Amendment in the backdrop of the Army Public School attack, the pace of operation in Karachi was accelerated, which led to improvement in the law and order, he said.

There was not a single kidnapping for ransom case pending in Sindh right now. In Karachi the number of targeted killing cases had dropped to around one per day from eight to 10 reported usually, he said.
He said 500 extortionists were arrested. Recent two cases of terrorist attacks on the Bohri community and Rangers were reaction to the killings of terrorists. He said the apex committees at the provincial level were formed and in addition to assistance from Rangers and police, the army was there as a backup force.

He said the army chief had given as strong statement over the law and order issue. There could be no compromise over it and culprits involved in heinous crimes would be brought to justice, he added.
Operation was continuing in Karachi across the board after all parties gave unanimous approval to it, he said, adding: “We are all on the same page on this issue.”

He dispelled the impression that the government had a particular view regarding anyone. He said the culprits of Shikarpur tragedy were arrested and charge sheeted in the antiterrorism court and likewise those involved in the murder case of Dr Khalid Mehmood Soomro were also arrested.

He said the death anniversary of Z. A. Bhutto would be held on April 4 in the afternoon and Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari would attend it ‘in one or the other way” and would “address it” also. He stated that decision to hold the event during the day was taken considering present conditions of the country. He said a Mushaira would also be held preceded by Quran Khwani.

LG elections

Earlier, addressing a meeting of the PPP divisional chapter of Hyderabad, he said April 4 and Dec 27 were important dates in the PPP workers’ lives. He said the local government elections would be held on Sept 20 in the country as per apex court’s directive and urged party workers to start making preparations for them.

Delimitation would be carried out by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP). Each UC would have five to 10 wards. The PPP had tabled a resolution in parliament, seeking 33 per cent representation for women. He rejected reports of differences among party workers. He urged women to work for their party and for themselves.

Senator Taj Haider claimed that workers would attend the death anniversary in a larger number because they knew that it was sacrifices of Z. A. Bhutto and Benazir Bhutto that they were witnessing democracy in the country.

Zahid Bhurgari and Jam Khan Shoro also spoke on the occasion.

PPP senators Abdul Latif Ansari, Aajiz Dhamra, Sassui Palijo and former senator Maula Bux Chandio, MNAs Ameer Ali Shah Jamote, Kamal Khan Chang and Shagufta Jumani, Dr Tahseen Sheikh, Fayyaz Shah, youth leader Ahsan Abro and Hina Dastagir were also present on the occasion.