A woman on Sunday asked Prime Minister Imran Khan the question that many have only been desiring too amid harsh economic conditions.
“Ghabrana nahi hai [do not panic],” the premier has time and again said since taking reins of the country, promising the nation of better days if they stay strong during the journey to “Naya Pakistan”.
However, people have been, for a long time now, being taking digs at the government and dragging the very popular phrase through the mud as they lose faith in the incumbent government’s ability to bring change.
“The situation is worsening by the minute. Inflation is out of control. Should we run our households or pay for our kids’ education?” a woman asked PM Imran on live call during an interactive session with the public.
She went on to say that Ramzan was just around the corner and rupee was also strengthening against the dollar but the people had been provider no relief.
“Please fulfil your promises or allow us to panic,” she said, leaving the premier cracking.
Seemingly controlling his laughter, PM Imran, in response, said that controlling inflation was the topmost priority of the government.
Addressing the caller by her name, he said, “Ambreen, you need not be frightened [over inflation] because the government is working towards tackling this problem.”
When asked by another caller what the government plans to do in the light of rising incidents of rape and sexual violence, especially against children, he said there were some fights that governments and legislation alone couldn’t win and needed the society’s help.
He said it was important for societies to protect themselves against vulgarity and the situation was much worse than what made its way to media. He said when he went to the UK, during the ’70s to play cricket, the “sex, drugs and rock n roll” culture was taking off.
The premier added nowadays, divorce rates “have gone up by as much as 70% due to vulgarity in that society”.
He said the whole concept of modesty in Islam has a purpose to it which is to “keep temptation in check”.
The premier spoke about how Bollywood followed the trends of Hollywood and now, the “same is happening there”, explaining why he brought the show Ertugrul to Pakistani screens.
Earlier, he said prices of vegetables and other food items were on the rise as the farmers who supplied them wanted their products to be sold at high prices in the market.
“The middlemen are making a lot of money from this,” he said.
The PM said his government was working towards an ingenuous solution through which they are aiming to connect the primary producers of these items to the final consumers.
He said the masses will see the positive effects of the rupee strengthening against the US dollar, adding that the local currency’s performance had already led to a decline in prices of diesel.
The premier spoke against “hoarders and mafias”, saying they were responsible for the hoarding of necessary food items in the country.
“For the first time, we are going after mafias in Pakistan,” he said. “The FIA completed its inquiry for the first time to bring to everyone’s knowledge how a few people hoard basic food items so their prices skyrocket and they make profits out of it,” he said.
He also revealed the government was working towards revolutionising the agriculture sector so Pakistan is self-sufficient in basic food items and other products.
During the broadcast, the premier also spoke of his government’s determination to root out corruption, shared details of upcoming education and health sector reforms, besides lashing out at the opposition.