Bilawal made formal entry into Pakistan Politics

Islamabad: Bilawal Bhutto Zardari on Thursday made his formal entry into Pakistani politics, pledging to protect his country and its fledgling democratic system from dictators and terrorists.

The ruling PPP chose the massive rally held outside the Bhutto family mausoleum to formally launch Bilawal’s career. Though he will not be eligible to contest polls till he turns 25 next September, Bilawal, chairman of the party, is expected to lead the PPP’s campaign for next year’s general election.

In an emotional speech in Urdu replete with references to sacrifices made by PPP founder Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto and his daughter Benazir, Bilawal said, “We have chosen the difficult path of democracy that has tears, thorns and stones. This is the same path that Benazir Bhutto taught us to walk on”.

The PPP, he said, was the “biggest wall against terrorism” while other political forces feared to “even take the name of terrorists”.

Bilawal paid tribute to others killed by the Taliban and militant groups, including Punjab Governor Salmaan Taseer, federal minister Shahbaz Bhatti and Awami National Party leader Bashir Ahmad Bilour, and questioned why only those wanting peace and championing democracy were being targeted.

Bilawal contended that the judiciary was focussing on irrelevant issues like fixing the prices of “pakoras, samosas and sugar” and criticism of judges by the media.

“Is your job giving justice or governing? Why are you not hearing the voice of the PPP workers?” he said. He pledged to thwart efforts by elements who were using dictators, intelligence agencies, state institutions and “other players” to end democracy and stop the PPP.

“They are bent on destroying democracy but we will not allow it,” he added. Zardari and Bilawal, who were clad in black, held hands and waved to the large gathering after they arrived at the venue of the rally.

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