LAYYAH – Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Tuesday criticised rival Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), saying that there were only empty seats in the party’s Islamabad public gathering.

Addressing a gathering in Layyah, where he announced a host of development projects and health initiatives, the prime minister said that he watched the footage of PTI’s showdown in capital Islamabad.

“Under lights, it looked like a big jalsa (political show), but when I closely watched the video, there were only empty chairs,” the PM, in a veiled reference to the PTI.

Talking about Tuesday’s gathering, the prime minister said, “It is a one-mile-long procession and is bigger than any public gatherings of our rival political parties.”

Before addressing the public gathering, the premier performed groundbreaking of a four-lane bridge project on Indus River which will connect Layyah and Taunsa, the two cities in southern Punjab.

“We don’t just inaugurate projects, we complete them too,” the premier remarked.

The prime minister also challenged his rivals to field their candidates in Layyah in the next general elections. “Our opponents are targeting the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) as they want to hamper the national growth,” he alleged.

The PM went on to say “a lion always stands firm even in the face of attacks from 100 jackals”.

“Can anyone who uses foul language deserve to be called your leader,” he questioned.

Reiterating his promise to end electricity loadshedding from the country, PM Nawaz said his government is working on to ensure an uninterrupted power supply to every household in the country.

“We had promised that we will eliminate once and for all the menace of loadshedding, and we have made operational the power houses to ensure electricity is produced,” he said, adding that more power houses will add 10,000 megawatts to the national grid by the beginning of the next year. “Once the electricity will come, for sure it will never be vanished again.”

He also announced provision of natural gas to the residents of Chowk Azam and Fatehpur areas besides construction of 50 kilometres-long roads in Layyah city.