Says province will avert Centre’s attempts to exploit its resources
QUETTA: Senior leader of Balochistan National Party- Mengal (BNP-M) Nawabzada Haji Lashkari Raisani has condemned the Prime Minister Imran Khan’s statement regarding paying foreign debts through gold in Reko Diq.
“I believe that the Prime Minister is oblivious of the country’s constitution because selling out any province’s natural resources would be tantamount to sedition with the constitution,” Raisani said as he slammed the rulers in the Centre for “doubling country’s foreign debts,” adding that despite looting Balochistan’s natural wealth, they still jeopardised the country’s economy,
“Balochistan’s natural gas runs industries in other provinces but 90% of its population is deprived of it,” Raisani lamented.
“Every single individual in Balochistan will avert the federal government’s attempts to exploit provincial resources hence all political forces should show unity to secure our natural wealth,” he urged.
Replying to a query about PM’s statement, the central leader of BNP-M said an independent committee should be constituted to probe the country’s foreign debts.
Earlier, lawmakers in the Balochistan Assembly also called the house’s attention towards Prime Minister’s statement regarding gold in Reko Diq and criticised it. Balochistan National Party’s parliamentarian Sanaullah Baloch said every single ruler at the Centre has expressed intent to steal Balochistan’s natural wealth.
“Today, country’s fiscal debt has jumped from Rs35,000 billion while the total wealth of Reko Diq is estimated to be Rs77,000 billion,” Baloch said, asserting that if the federal government hands over Reko Diq to private companies, the step would be a clear violation of the Constitution of Pakistan.
“As per the 18th amendment, Balochistan owns its natural resources and the government at the centre has no right to take decisions [on province’s behalf] over our resources,” he affirmed.
Corroborating the stance of Baloch, Provincial Minister for Social Welfare Development Asad Baloch said the house by all means has to protect the natural wealth of the province as people of Balochistan are the true custodians of their resources.
Sanaullah Baloch urged all political parties having representation in the National Assembly and Senate to raise the issue on every forum.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 17th, 2020.