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Senate committee on CPEC rejects proposal of barricading Gwadar

Also objects to bifurcation of Balochistan on basis of North and South | Terms the proposal an attempt to dislocate local populations

Fawad Yousafzai

February 13, 2021

ISLAMABAD   -   The Senate Special Committee on China-Pak Economic Corridor (CPEC) Friday rejected the idea of barricading Gwadar saying it is a ploy to dislocate the local population.

The Senate Special Committee also objected to the bifurcation of Balochistan on the basis of North and South.

The Special Committee on the Project of China-Pak Economic Corridor (CPEC), which met here under Senator Sikander Mandhro, showed its concern regarding delay in the corridor projects in Balochistan and stressed the need for maintaining timelines if progress is to be made.

The committee considered and adopted the Second Interim Report and the Final Report of the Committee on CPEC.

While discussing recommendations made in previous meetings; the Committee took strong note of delayed responses from the Ministries and Departments.  It also pointed out overlapping responsibilities; which was recognised as the main reason for slow progress of projects. 

Deliberating over the briefing made by the Ministry of Planning Development and Special Initiatives regarding CPEC Projects in Balochistan; the Committee was informed that four socio-economic projects have been completed so far, that included the Gwadar Smart City Master Plan, HUBCO Coal Power project, Surab-Hoshab Highway and Hoshab-Gwadar Motorway. The Committee while discussing details of these projects showed grave concern regarding the Surab-Hoshab Highway.

It was asserted that the road had already collapsed and was incredibly unfit for heavy vehicles as would be in the case of CPEC.  About the Hoshab-Gwadar Motorway; the Committee questioned NHA for its discretion and said it was not a motorway and that the Committee was being misled.  

Reviewing the HUBCO Coal Power Project, the Committee was of the view that in most cases such installations are designed to use imported raw material. It asserted that modifications must be made to use indigenous raw material that would conserve foreign exchange, essential for economic stability.

The Committee rejected the idea of barricading Gwadar and said that it was a ploy to dislocate the local population. It also objected to the bifurcation of Balochistan on the basis of North and South. 

Ongoing projects that were discussed included the New Gwadar International Airport, Eastbay Expressway, ML-4 Railway Project from Gwadar to Sukkur via Basima and Fresh Water Supply and Treatment Plants. Development of ML-4 was termed a strategy to cut off Gwadar from the rest of Balochistan. The Committee showed immense dissatisfaction with the management of the projects and the briefing given by the Ministry of Planning Development and Special Initiatives. The convener also showed displeasure due to the non-availability of senior officers of the ministry and the concerned departments. Therefore, the committee took serious notice and decided to defer the remaining agenda items, as any further discussion on these projects would be a waste of time. 

The meeting was attended by Senator Nuzhat Sadiq, Senator Muhammad Usman Khan Kakar, Senator Muhammad Akram, Senator Muhammad Azam Khan Swati, Senator Mir Kabeer Ahmed Muhammad Shahi, Senator Muhammad Yaqoob Khan Nasar and senior officers of the Ministry of Planning Development and Special Initiatives (PD&SI) & Board of Investment (BOI), along with all concerned


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