Real freedom, facts and fictions

Federal Minister for Finance and Revenue, Miftah Ismail has said that real freedom means economic self-reliance, without which the concept of freedom and self-reliance is not achieved. According to him, the PTI government took 79% of external debt out of the total debt taken in the country’s history. He said that there was a record trade deficit during the PTI government as Pakistan’s imports jumped up to US $ 80 billion while the trade deficit reached $48 billion. Miftah claimed that the former PTI government was leading the country towards default and the Muslim League government under the leadership of Prime Minister, Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif saved the country from bankruptcy. Miftah wondered how PTI could talk about real freedom without achieving economic self-sufficiency. The minister further said, the coalition government saved the country from a situation like Sri Lanka, where petrol and gas are blacking out. Interestingly, the Minister went on in self-praising and declared that PTI government made agreements with the IMF to make electricity and oil more expensive, the effect of which continued even during our government’s tenure.

The honourable Federal Minister lashed out his political rivals for damaging economy and claimed credit for rescuing the national economy from looming default. Apparently, over the past four decades all successive governments mostly relayed on foreign aid and loans while drained national resources in thoughtless and politically motivated policies and projects which further increased the economic problems of the country instead of providing some relief to the public. Both incumbent coalition government and former PTI rulers have no out of box solution to the economic woes of the country. Previously, the PTI government completely submitted to the global lender in February this year, while Sharif’s aides embraced all hateful and most difficult conditions of the IMF to revive the EFF program.

In fact, the legacies of both parties had been fully exposed to the public, hence Finance Minister should focus on practical measures to end country’s economic dependence on other nations, which demands an expansion in the tax net, taxation on agriculture industry and real estate along with the implementation of the law so the country could achieve real freedom which has become a tact of politicians and a dream for the nation.