PML-N to soon start ‘Punjab Bachao’ movement: Ahsan Iqbal

PML-N senior leader Ahsan Iqbal said on Saturday that the PTI government and Prime Minister Imran Khan are neglecting the issues of the healthcare sector, warning the government that it will soon start a “Punjab Bachao” movement.

The PML-N leader was speaking at a press conference where he said that after meeting and listening to the problems of the doctors across the country, he was quite concerned about the medical fraternity.

Criticising the promulgation of Pakistan Medical Commission (PMC) Ordinance 2019, through which the government oversees the performance of the medical and dental practice in the country and formulates policies, Iqbal said his party will raise their voice against it in the parliament.

He said that the country is not only for the elite class and the government is on a spree to privatise healthcare facilities.

“Pakistan is not for the rich only, it is for 22 crore Pakistanis, whose majority is living below poverty line courtesy Imran Khan,” he said.

Referring to his conversation with the Young Doctors Association members, he said that their concerns were well-founded and the government needs to look into their issues and resolve them.

The PML-N leader said that 6,000 postgraduate doctors of the country, who have experience from public hospital practice, are not having their qualifications recognized by the current government.

Iqbal stressed that the 6,000 doctors’ credentials should be recognized and their licenses issued so that they can serve in the public sector and in far-flung areas. He added that due to the pandemic, the country needs to fortify its healthcare system.

“10-12000 doctors with foreign degrees are also being left in limbo as their licenses are not being cleared,” he said, calling it an act of ‘bureaucratic negligence’ by the government.

The former minister said he feared that the current government will blithely worsen the issues of doctors and healthcare sector just as it did with the national airline PIA.

He added that the PML-N will compile a National Health Charter with medical experts and present it at the Punjab Assembly and National Assembly.

‘Punjab Bachao’ movement

The former interior minister accused the PTI government of sending Punjab back to the Stone Age. He said that the time had arrived for the PML-N to launch a movement against the government’s policies in Punjab.

“The PML-N will soon have to start a Punjab Bachao movement,” he said.”The PTI has wreaked havoc throughout Punjab,” he added.

The PML-N stalwart said that his party’s mandate had been stolen in Punjab and said that instead of strengthening institutions, the PTI was setting the province back 50 years.

“A government of destruction is in power in Punjab which will destroy this developed province,” he said. “[Imran Khan] Niazi will have to answer for the destruction of Punjab,” he added.

He said that Punjab was the biggest province of Pakistan and its performances had a direct impact on Pakistan’s economy. “If Punjab crumbles, the entire system will crumble,” he stated.

Rejecting allegations that the PML-N was playing provincial politics, Iqbal said there was nothing wrong in attempting to save 10 years’ development in the province.