LAHORE, Nov 11: The Pakistan Tehrik-i-Insaaf has approached the Election Commission of Pakistan against the Punjab government alleging the latter is using state machinery and resources for PML-N election campaign.
“I am writing on behalf of the Pakistan Tehrik-i-Insaaf to protest against misuse of state resources by the Punjab government of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz. I also want to bring to your notice the misconduct of government officials who are using their official positions on behalf of the PML-N,” PTI Information Secretary Shafqat Mahmood said in a communiqué sent to the ECP and released to the media here on Sunday.
The letter alleges that both the federal and provincial governments have greatly enhanced their advertising budgets and are making full use of the amount to propagate their party line, with the Punjab government crossing all limits of official propriety.
It quotes as an example of half-page advertisements in newspapers daily placed by the Punjab government extolling its achievements.
“On most of these ads a picture of Mr. Nawaz Sharif is displayed prominently. (While) as you are aware, he has no official designation in the Punjab government and has no right to appear in its ads.” Similarly, the letter says, laptops bought and paid for by the provincial government are being distributed by Hamza Sharif and Maryam Nawaz although both do not enjoy any official position in the official setup.
“The display of Nawaz Sharif’s picture in government advertisements and prominent role of Sharif family members in official events is a misuse of their position to further political aims of their party. In an election year, such a conduct becomes even more objectionable.”
Requesting the chief election commissioner to take notice and initiate steps to ensure that this activity comes to a stop, the PTI also complains against the conduct of some government officials working with the provincial government.
The PTI has been informed by “media houses and newspaper editors that a Punjab media team member, who is a top government employee, regularly tries to influence PTI’s media coverage.”
The party fears that if the practice goes unchecked, this ‘disease’ will spread to other public servants.
Saying this will be a complete negation of the code of conduct, the PTI has requested the CEC to proceed against all government officials directly or indirectly taking part in politics.