QUETTA: Former spe­aker of the Balochistan Asse­mbly Mohammad Asla­m Bhootani, who is contesting the election from NA-272 Lasbela-Gwadar cons­tituency, has promised to protect the constitutional rights of the people of Gwadar.

Speaking at a rally held in connection with his election campaign in the coastal town of Pasni on Sunday, Mr Bhootani said if elected he would become voice of the downtrodden people of Gwadar district, which would be transformed into the country’s economic hub.

Mr Bhootani, who is contesting the election as an independent candidate, will face Sardar Akhtar Jan Mengal, the president of BNP-Mengal, and Jam Mir Kamal Khan Alyani, the president of the newly formed Balochistan Awami Party (BAP).

He claimed the precious land of Gwadar had been allotted to several influential people without following legal procedures; the land would be taken back if the people of Gwadar gave him the right to represent them in the National Assembly.

The former speaker informed the participants of the public meeting that he had plans and experience to stop illegal fishing from Balochistan waters. “I will not let anyone to exploit resources and rights of local fishermen. Promotion of the fisheries department could boost our provincial economy.”

He expressed serious concern over water shortage in Gwadar and said that despite being a port city and financial hub of the CPEC (China-Pakistan Economic Corridor), the people of Gwadar were still searching for clean drinking water.

Published in Dawn, July 2nd, 2018