IN QUEST OF FINDING ANSWERS
The current Political scenario in Pakistan is nothing short of a camouflage changing face day by day. Our so called politicians are leaving no stone unturned in calling out names and brining out skeletons in the cut throat race to the General Elections to be held in 2018. Being an avid follower of the Political scene and finding some questions unanswered I have started on a quest to find out answers which are going through the minds of every citizen of Pakistan through a series of interviews with different political faces of Pakistan.
The first face to be interviewed in this series is a very well known personality. She has been part of the political scenario since the last 07 years and has a very strong hold on the political workings not only in her party but also the country. Belonging to PTI she holds the achievement of being its General Secretary for 05 years and also being the first candidate to be announced to the Party ticket for the General Elections 2018. She is none other than Ms. Yasmeen Rashid PTI candidate from NA 120.
Dr. Yasmin Rashid has served as Pakistan Tehreek – e- Insaf Punjab General Secretary. She retired from the Government Service in 2010 as a Professor & Head of the Obstetrics & Gynecology Department, King Edward Medical University, Lahore.
MBBS Fatima Jinnah Medial College Lahore 1978
MCPS College of Physician & Surgeons Pakistan 1981
MRCOG Royal College of Obstetrics & Gynecology London. 1984
FRCOG Royal College of Obstetrics & Gynecology London. 1999
FCPS College of Physician & Surgeons Pakistan 2010
Q. Having a huge body of medical work behind you why did you decide to join politics.
A. I think every person should be a politician. The learned and educated people of Pakistan should come into politics other wise the political scene will remain the same as it has been since a long time. It is important for educated people to come forward as education makes you differ between the good and bad.
I think that politics is inherited. Its in your blood. You need to have an aptitude for it since an early age.
Q. What made you join PTI and not PPP as your father-in-law was close to Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto. Also it is heard that you joined PTI on the recommendation of your father-in-law?
A. My father-in-law was very disappointed when ZardariSahab overtook PPP. This was in 2008 when he was still alive. Before that we had close affiliations with PPP but after ZardariSahab took over my father-in-law was not happy. He felt that PPP was going against the basic idea on which it was formed. He knew that I wanted to join politics after retirement in 2010 and told me not to think about joining PPP. When I asked him as to where I should go he told me about Imran Khan. He said that he had read articles about Imran khan and here was a man with a vision for Pakistan. He said that Imran Khan loved Pakistan and that we needed a leader who loved Pakistan.
Q.When you joined PTI did you find it exactly as you had heard about it, How did you find Imran Khan as a person and as leader?
I used to think of myself as a big leader before I met Khan Sahab. I acknowledge Khan Sahab as my leader and I am very proud to be a part of his party. I proudly state that I am from his party. I think that Khan Sahab is a very tolerant leader. He listens to us very patiently and doesn’t say anything at all.
This is my seventh year with PTI. A political party is always a political party. Khan Sahab wants to make PTI an institution. He has really worked hard to make the party what it is today. We had a big election in 2013. I have remained the General Secretary of PTI in Punjab for five years. Khan Sahab has his own vision, he wants the circumstances to be better and recently he also launched the membership campaign. He has said that after the membership campaign is complete and elections are held we will hold our own party elections so that we can have proper leaders in our party.
As far as Khan Sahab’s love for Pakistan is concerned it can be clearly seen. He faced a lot of hardships when his mother was battling with Cancer. Seeing his mother’s battle and the challenges faced by him, he thought that if he as a well known and well off person is facing such difficulties what about the poor people who have no facilities at all. And it is because of this thought that he opened ShaukatKhanum where poor patients are provided with State of the Art treatment.
Same is Khan Sahab’s vision for Education. He founded NUML and I think that if you provide education and health to the people of Pakistan then they can be among the top leaders of the world.
Q. Khan Sahab has always spoken against corruption. With the new members being recruited will the criteria of anti corruption remain the same for them as recently some instances were seen where people with corruption charges joined PTI ?
A. See PTI is apolitical party and you cannot stop anyone from joining a political party. It is not a club where a person can be denied entrance. See the party policy will be known when party tickets will be announced. Al humdulillah my party ticket was the first one announced by Khan Sahab. Only two party tickets have been announced by Khan Sahab till now mine and Chaudhry Sarwar. Khan Sahab thinks about a lot of things but if someone wants to join the party you cannot stop him.
As far as the issue of corruption is concerned Khan Sahab is totally against it. He does not indulge in corruption and neither does he like a person who does it.
Q. CM PervaizKhattak was in the news a few days back for having attended the valima ceremony of a well known politician whom he had himself gotten removed on corruption charges and that too with Government protocol ?
A. See if PerviazKhattak had gone for an official meeting and then attended a wedding I cannot say anything about it. But I can tell you this that if you go and see the current scenario in KPK you will be happy. The police does not take money from any one. The police in KPK is an exemplary police. Also the patwari system has been abolished. Khan Sahab has concentrated a lot on health and education. Khan Sahab has eradicated corruption from education. He has introduced the GPS system which can identify whether the teacher is present or not.
Q.What about Billion tree project ?
A. The biggest achievement of Khan Sahab is the Billion Tree Tsunami. No one can understand this vision of Khan Sahab’s and keep mocking that he only knows to plant trees. If we had greenery and trees here in Lahore this smog situation would have never taken place. The smog seen in Lahore will never be seen in Peshawar.
Coal power plants have been shut down the world over and here in Pakistan Coal power plant has been set up to generate electricity. Then they say that loadshedding is due to smog. At times I think that there is no intelligent person in the Ministry. The Government has gone ahead and opened the Quaid e Azam Power plant in a desert. There is no water available in the desert where the plant is set up and you need liters of water to clean each panel. All its projects are closed. The government has not done a single thing right. N League does not have any problem except Imran Khan. The steps Imran Khan has taken investing in Human Reforms will go a long way in bringing positive change.
Q. What major difference did you see in the 2013 elections and the recently held bye elections in NA 120 ?
A. There is a lot of difference. The people had a lot of zeal and valor. The fear they had has subsided a little. Many from the N League voted for PTI. You can see the difference clearly. The margin of votes have come down from 40,000 to 14,000.
Q. Where do you see Maryam Nawaz in the future political scenario of Pakistan ?
A. See Maryam Nawaz is not a politician I am sorry to say. She is a politician by default because she is Nawaz Sharif’s daughter. She is born in Nawaz Sharif’s house. See a politician is by birth. Politicians start working since an early age. We have been working in politics since an early age. Her brothers were not interested in politics hence Nawaz Sharif asked her. And because she is very ambitious she agreed. She had started thinking of herself as the Prime Minister and even chaired cabinet meetings. I won’t comment on her personal life but a person who does not fulfill merit can never be a successful politician.
Q. What do you think about the NAB references? Will Nawaz Sharif get relief?
A. There should be no doubt about it. As far as NAB references are concerned Maryam Nawaz says that they do not have any property. Whereas it has been proved now that all the flats are their property. And if they open the Hudaibia case then Shahbaz Sharif will also be involved.
Q. Don’t you fell that Imran Khan has some personal zilch with Nawaz Sharif
A. No there is no personal zilch with Nawaz Sharif. Khan Sahab gets irritated with a person who lies. The zilch that you see is due to the lies which Nawaz Sharif says.
Q. MaulanaFazlurRehman has often accused Imran Khan of supporting the Jewish Lobby. Recently the nominated Saudi King came under the influence of Trump’s son-in-law who is a Jew. Khan Sahab says that if he comes to power he will not take any dictations from America. If Khan Sahab comes to power do you think his family relations on the p art on his ex-wife will influence his decisions?
A. No this is absolutely wrong. His sons are proper practicing Muslims. His ex-wife Jemima is still a Muslim and she is bringing up her children with Islamic teachings. Accusing others is easy. Maulana FazlurRehman is answerable to Allah. Who is he to accuse others of Jewish lobby and such nonsense.
Q. What about the accusations Ayesha Gulalai put up against him
A. See everyone knows why she did it and on whose orders she did it. It is open to everyone. We were already in the party when she joined and was given the reserved seat. Till the last day you were fighting for NA 1. Why weren’t you concerned about your repute during that period? When you were denied NA 1 it is only then that you remembered your reputation and all the wrongs done with you. Why didn’t you stand up four years earlier? This is totally wrong and I do not believe it. I have been with the party for seven years and have seen Khan Sahab closely. I cannot tell you how much Khan Sahab respects women.
Q. Where do you see PTI in the 2018 elections
A. In sha Allah Tehreek e Insaf will win.
Q. Imran Khan recently stated that he will make rich people abide by the law if given Governance. How is the situation in KPK regarding rich and influential people
A. See if the verdict comes against Nawaz Sharif then all the rich people will automatically abide by the law. This will then prove that if a step can be taken against the PM of Pakistan then no one will be forgiven. That is what is important and that is what we want to do.
Q. Govt is of the stance that Khan Sahab is the pawn for someone very influential.
A. Khan Sahab is no one’s pawn. It goes against his inherent disorder. He cannot be anyone’s pawn