PESHAWAR: The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly through a unanimously adopted resolution on Tuesday opposed changes in the original plan of China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), saying it would create disharmony amongst the federating units.

“The Assembly of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa resolves and recommends to the federal government that the national consensus evolved on May 28, 2015 in APC should be implemented in letter and spirit,” said the resolution. The resolution was moved by parliamentary leader of QWP Sikandar Hayat Sherpao.

Participating in the debate, the members of treasury and opposition benches termed changes in the original route of economic corridor a threat to the integration of federation.

The resolution was jointly moved as political parties in the government and opposition also supported it. It was signed by provincial ministers Imtiaz Shahid and Habibur Rehman; ANP lawmaker Syed Jaffar Shah; Aurangzaib Nalotha of PML-N; and Mohammad Ali Shah and Saleem Khan of PPP.


Resolution fears disharmony among federating units of the country


Tabling the resolution, Mr Sherpao said that CPEC was a fortune changer project for the masses of the country that was why it was fully supported by them but later it got controversial when its original route was changed.

The resolution said that during the APC, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had announced that the western route of the corridor would be completed first. However, issuance of maps and allocation of federal budget has created doubts regarding the western route. According to the present plan, the western route will remain the same old single road of National Highway, says the resolution.

The budget allocations are mainly for the eastern route. The rest of the allocations are to connect this route to Gwadar on one hand and Karakuram Highway on the other, it adds.

Any deviation from the decisions of the APC will not be acceptable to the people of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, moreover it will create disharmony amongst the federating units of Pakistan.

Syed Jaffar Shah said that it would be Panjab China Economic Corridor if the plan was not executed in its original shape. With changing the original plan, most of the benefit would be availed by Punjab at the cost of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Sindh and Balochistan, he added.

Under the changed plan of CPEC, he said, the industrial zones would also be established in Punjab.

Senior Minister Inayatullah Khan said that federal government adopted double stand on CPEC. It was dealing the issue very diplomatically, he said. “Verbally the federal ministers says that original plan has not been changed while officials in Economic Division Islamabad say that the original plan has been changed for the benefit of Punjab,” said the minister, who belongs to Jamaat-i-Islami.

He said that it would be injustice with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, which was already adversely affected by the decade-long militancy and frequent floods. The original rout, he said, passed through all the under-developed areas of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Balochistan and Sindh. “The grievances of other provinces will further increase with changing the original plan of CPEC,” he said.

Provincial Information Minister Mushtaq Ahmed Ghani said that CPEC was the project of development and prosperity of Pakistan but it didn’t mean to deprive Khyber Pakhtunkhwa of it. “Our future generations will not forgive us if we fail to get our due share in CPEC,” he added.

Through another resolution, the house demanded of the provincial government to ask the federal government to declare December 16 as “black day” as on that day students of the Army Public School were brutally killed by Taliban.

The resolution said that it should also be commemorated at national level. The resolution was moved by PML-N MPA Amna Sardar.

Earlier, Jaffar Shah informed the house that the industry department failed to distribute compensation amount among the flood-affected people of Swat. “Around Rs 410 million is laying with the industry department, which is a grant fund of the donors for the people affected by militancy and floods,” he said.

Mr Shah said that the amount would get lapsed on October 30 if it was not distributed among the affected people.

Published in Dawn, October 7th, 2015

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