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Centre to utilise all resources for development of Balochistan: PM

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QUETTA: Prime Minister Imran Khan has assured full cooperation to the Balochistan government in execution of development projects aimed at wealth and job creation and uplift of the backward areas.
The Prime Minister gave this assurance while chairing a meeting here on Friday which reviewed the damages inflicted by recent rains and floods in Balochistan, relief efforts and progress on the development schemes.
The Prime Minister said that Balochistan has been given more funds from the PSDP as compared to other provinces. “Unfortunately, promises were made to Balochistan in the past but could not be fulfilled,” the Premier said. He said the PTI government is working towards welfare of the downtrodden segments of the society and development of the backward areas. “Asad Umar will hold consultations on a special package for the development of South Balochistan,” he added.
He said Balochistan had immense development potential and opportunities in terms of area and underscored that development priorities need to be set in the province.
In a remark on the coronavirus pandemic, PM Imran said there “has been improvement in the situation but we need to be much more careful”.
The Prime Minister commended the relief efforts of the provincial government. Expressing satisfaction over the water level in dams, he said construction of new dams in the province will brighten the prospects of the development of agriculture sector.
Highlighting the importance of Kachhi Canal project, he said this project holds immense significance to address the water issues of Balochistan province.
The meeting was informed that emergency has been declared in the province at the outset of monsoon season. It was informed that Pakistan Army provided heavy machinery and rescue support. Currently work is in progress to rehabilitate roads, bridges, canals and dams. The meeting was informed that most of the relief work has been completed in the province.
The meeting attended by Balochistan Chief Minister Jam Kamal, federal ministers Asad Umar and Shibli Faraz, National Assembly Deputy Speaker Qasim Suri, and National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) Chairperson Lt Gen Nadeem Afzal.
Earlier in the day, after CM Kamal received the Prime Minister, the two had held a separate meeting where the former briefed the latter on the security situation across Balochistan.
The spokesperson for the government of Balochistan, Liaquat Shahwani, said Kamal briefed the PM on development projects, institutionalised mechanism, accountability process, and welfare budget model.
“CM raised the issues of federal Jobs quota, mega dams, special economic zones, CPEC share in projects, and scholarship for Balochistan students,” Shahwani said on Twitter.
Later, PM Imran chaired a meeting of the provincial cabinet, the spokesperson said. Shahwani said Balochistan CM thanked the premier for an increased share in the PSDP.
The provincial cabinet emphasised to PM Imran on the immediate need of Quetta-Karachi dual carriageway, dams, water reservoirs, Kachi Canal, road infrastructure, and energy projects in Balochistan.
Meanwhile, welcoming the momentous intra-Afghan peace talks to be held in Qatar starting Saturday (today), the Prime Minister Imran Khan expressed his contentment in a statement on Friday.
“Finally, our combined efforts have brought forth the day,” PM Khan tweeted welcoming the inception of long-awaited talks. He added that it’s the day that the “Afghan people have been yearning for.”
He said that Afghanistan remained embattled with bloodshed and controversies for over 40 years. “For more than 40 years, Afghans have suffered from continued conflict and bloodshed,” and added that Pakistan has endured the fall-out which ensued “terrorism, loss of precious lives, and huge economic cost.”
“I have underlined for a long time that there is no military solution to the conflict in Afghanistan,” the PM said stressing that the only way forward is a “negotiated political settlement”.
It is now for the Afghan leaders to seize this historic opportunity, work together constructively the tweet-thread read. He urged the leaders to secure “an inclusive, broad-based and comprehensive political settlement”. He hoped that all sides “will honour their respective commitments”.
The PM noted that Pakistan has played a pivotal role in facilitating Afghan peace and in transpiring the dialogues. “We feel deeply gratified today as we have fulfilled our part of the responsibility. Stakeholders must remain resolute in spite of the challenges.”
The PM asserted that the successful culmination of an “Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace and reconciliation process is indispensable for Afghanistan and for regional peace, stability and prosperity”.
He ensured solidarity for Afghan peace and support the cause in its totality. “For its part, Pakistan will continue to remain in full support and solidarity with the Afghan people.”
The talks between the Afghan government and the Taliban will take place in Qatar’s capital Doha after a long wait and anticipation. Qatar’s foreign ministry made the announcement on Thursday. – TLTP