ISLAMABAD: In his first speech in the National Assembly as the prime minister of Pakistan, Shehbaz Sharif Monday raised the minimum wage of government employees to Rs25,000 which is applicable from April 1. Following the ouster of PTI chairman Imran Khan from the office of the prime minister, the Opposition’s joint candidate Shehbaz Sharif was elected as the 23rd premier of Pakistan today. Shehbaz secured 174 votes as opposed to PTI’s candidate Shah Mahmood Qureshi, who received no votes after his party decided to boycott the polling process. The premier mentioned that it was for the first time in the history of Pakistan that a prime minister was ousted through the no-confidence motion. Terming today a “historic day”, he mentioned that the happiness of the people can be seen through the economic indicators. Shehbaz mentioned that the rupee regained its value — which was trading at Rs190 per dollar and closed at Rs182 per dollar today. “Imran Khan was the person who said that when rupee gains Re1 against the US dollar then the prime minister of the country is a corrupt person now he should see that the rupee has recovered around Rs8,” he said. He acknowledged the Supreme Court’s “unanimous” verdict saying that the day when the apex court gave its judgment should be marked as a “historic day” in the history of Pakistan. The newly-elected prime minister said the Opposition was discussing the no-confidence motion days before Imran Khan’s “concocted threat letter controversy”. “They say that this letter came to them on March 7, but our decisions were made way before that, so, if [what the previous government claimed] is a lie, then the matter should be disclosed transparently before the public,” he said. Therefore, PM Shehbaz Sharif announced that the parliament’s security committee would be given a briefing on the “threat letter” to the members of the committee in presence of the armed forces personnel and bureaucrats — the director-general Inter-Services Intelligence, foreign secretary, and the ambassador who wrote it, who has now been transferred to Brussels. “If there’s an iota of evidence that we were backed by foreign conspirators […] then with you Mr speaker and God as my witness, I will not think for another second and resign from the office of the prime minister,” PM Shehbaz Sharif said, vowing to hold an in-camera session of the security committee at the earliest. The prime minister thanked his brother and ex-premier Nawaz Sharif for his support, while also lauding social media activists, press clubs, media houses, and lawyers for backing the Opposition’s struggle for democracy.