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Balochistan to become tiger of Pakistan: PM

Announces Rs1 bn for roads, streets in Gwadar, says menace of terrorism being eradicated

GWADAR: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said on Thursday Pakistan will be made an Asian tiger and Balochistan will become the tiger of Pakistan.

The prime minister said Balochistan would become a source of development for Pakistan since its future progress banks upon Balochistan due to the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). He said that all roads to prosperity would lead from Gwadar.

The premier was addressing a public meeting at the cricket ground on the last leg of his three-day visit to Karachi and Gwadar and it was the first public gathering that was addressed by any prime minister of the country in Gwadar. The prime minister who had stayed here for two days was in a pleasant disposition. He reached here by road from Pasni a day earlier and told the audience that he was the first prime minister of Pakistan who stayed overnight in Gwadar. By traveling on road up to 150 kilometres, staying overnight and addressing the public meeting, the prime minister has eroded all apprehensions about the law and order situation in Balochistan.

The engagements of the prime minister in Gwadar have sent across a message loud and clear that Balochistan, especially Gwadar, is a peaceful part of the country. The address of the premier was punctuated with thunder of applause and sloganeering since he announced projects of public welfare. He unveiled the development package for Gwadar, including a university, 300-bed hospital and desalination plant. He announced Rs1 billion for roads and streets in Gwadar.

Nawaz assured that Gwadar was soon going to experience a new dawn of development and will become the country’s unique small district, having all basic amenities similar to big cities. The prime minister vowed to make Gwadar the tiger of Pakistan. He said it is his mission to improve the living standard of the people of Gwadar. He said that no other party had ever started development of the area during its tenure. He said the deprivation of the people of Balochistan would now come to an end, adding that Gwadar would bring a ray of hope for them. The prime minister announced building of state-of-the-art Gwadar University to equip the natives with contemporary education at their doorsteps.

The premier said that 50 youth, including girls and boys of Gwadar, would be sent to China on government expenses to learn the Chinese language in view of their future contribution to CPEC. Nawaz said the menace of terrorism was being eradicated and “we are committed to completely wiping out terrorists from Pakistan”.

The prime minister, who praised the intellect level of girls and announced inclusion of girls for Chinese learning programme, prompted a sizeable crowd of women to chant slogans of Maryam Nawaz Zindabad. The prime minister directed the Higher Education Commission (HEC) to allocate seats for students, including girl students of Gwadar, in the leading universities of the country. The government has already purchased 500 acres land in Shahabi for the university and an amount of Rs1 billion for the purpose would be allocated in the upcoming budget. The premier said with the assistance of China, a 300-bed modern hospital would be set up in Gwadar. He said the deserving residents of Gwadar will be issued health cards and they will be eligible to get medical treatment in hospitals anywhere in the country.

Nawaz said there was a dire shortage of clean drinking water in Gwadar and announced to set up a desalination plant on an urgent basis. The plant would clean five million gallons of water daily, which would be supplied to houses. He told the audience that he took an aerial view of Gwadar to see the condition of roads and streets. He announced Rs1 billion for infrastructure improvement of the city, including sewerage system and link roads.

The prime minister said the lands of Gwadar had now become more ‘precious than gold’. However, he expressed dissatisfaction that investors, who purchased lands from locals on cheap rates several years back, are now earning billions, while the actual owners are still in shabby conditions. He said the real owners of the lands should also get fruits of progress of the city. He pledged to devise a strategy as a “remedy to this injustice”. He announced to soon hold consultations with the Balochistan’s governor, chief minister and chairmen district council to find a solution so as to ensure compensation for the local landowners.

“I am stating this with utmost sincerity and want to take corrective measures for the betterment of you and your coming generations,” he said. Nawaz said his mission of development of Gwadar initiated during his first tenure and vowed to make it the best port city. The prime minister said Gwadar was being linked with the entire country through motorways from Quetta-Hassan Abdal-Mansehra and up to the border of China. He said that peace had returned to Balochistan, for which credit goes to the armed forces, police, local administration and nation that had rendered great sacrifices. Nawaz said construction of roads was significant in paving the way for prosperity as they make easy access to school, hospitals and markets.

Addressing the meeting, Chief Minister Balochistan Sanaullah Zehri said the personal interest of the prime minister to  bring a wave of change in Balochistan was exemplary. He said the dream of Gwadar’s development would become a reality


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