Pakistan’s prosperity linked to Balochistan’s progress: PM

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APP44-06 QUETTA: October 06 – Prime Minister Imran Khan addressing cabinet members and civil society people at Governor House. APP photo by Mohsin Naseer

 

QUETTA , Oct 06 (APP):Prime Minister Imran Khan Saturday said his government was committed to bring a positive change in lives of the people of Balochistan, as it believed that progress of the country’s largest province was directly linked to the prosperity of Pakistan.
Addressing a gathering of retired judges, members of civil society and senior officials here at the Governor House, he said his party was against the progress of a selected group of people, a particular area or a certain segment of society as it violated the basic principles of justice and equality.
Imran Khan regretted that the previous governments and different political parties exploited the deprivation of the people of Balochistan for their personal gains and did little in practical terms to improve the lives of the common man.
He asked the political leadership of Balochistan to rise to the occasion and bring about a real change. He mentioned success of his party in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and attributed it to the success of its local government system.
Khan urged the local leaders to emulate the Village Council model of KpK, saying that they need to be provided funds directly to enable them serve the people and address their basic issues. The local leaders were the best judges of the problems of the people of their areas and they were needed to be empowered fully, he added.
He was appreciative of the commitment shown by Chief Minister Balochistan Jam Kamal and his team and expressed confidence that they would fully exploit the potential of the resource rich province and bring it at par with the developed areas of the country.
The prime minister said completion of Kaachi canal would irrigate 0.8 million acres of land and help the province and the country address it’s food security concerns.
He extended full support of the federal government to the provincial government in addressing any shortcoming in building it’s capacity. He pointed to the brain drain from Balochistan due to acts of terrorism in past and said with improvement in situation, people would return.
He said there was an urgent need to establish a cancer hospital in Quetta so that the people did not have to travel far to get treated. He said he would soon chair a meeting for a feasibility of the project and send a team of Shaukat Khanum hospital for initial study in this regard.
The prime minister said he had also discussed the issue of provision of health facilities with Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa, who had assured to assist the provincial government in meeting any shortage of doctors.
Prime Minister Imran Khan said no nation could progress without eradicating corruption from all tiers of society. Corruption erodes national economy and destroys state institutions, he added.
He said today Pakistan was under a heavy debt of Rd 28000 billion, up from Rs 6000 in ten years, just because of rampant corrupt practices.
The prime minister cited the example of China which threw behind bars around 400 of its ministers and hundreds of thousands of government officials who were involved in corrupt practices.
He said today majority of the government run corporations were running in losses of billions, because the previous governments appointed their cronies on hefty packages, without any consideration.
He said it was the time that the provincial government focus on fully exploiting the estimated Rs 450 billion worth of minerals, besides benefiting from the Gwadar port and it’s oil and gas reserves.
He assured that Balochistan would get more than its due share in the China Pakistan Economic Corridor owing to its strategic location.
He said he would keep in regular contact with the leadership of Balochistan to ensure that the dividends of progress reach out to each and every area of the province.