THE PPP and PTI have both publicly announced their support for the creation of a Seraiki province in southern Punjab. The latter even included it in its first 100-day programme. But it is highly regrettable that D. I. Khan and Tank districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa with a more than 85 per cent Seraiki-speaking population have not been considered part of the proposed province.
Both these districts, located in the extreme south of KP and in close proximity to the proposed Seraiki province, have been suffering in many ways for ethnic reasons. The Seraiki population of D. I. Khan is more than 78 per cent literate. In many cultural respects — food, dress, customs and habits — they are different from those of the settlers from tribal areas and other KP districts.
The population of D. I. Khan and Tank districts, according to the last census, is about 2.4 million, and of this about 2.04 million speaks Seraiki. Interestingly, the Seraiki language spoken in these two districts is more accurate, plain, clear without kinks and grammatically correct compared to the language spoken in the rest of the proposed Seraiki province.
In a nutshell, the inclusion of these two districts in the province is linguistically, politically, psychologically and ethically natural and logical.
Engr M.Yunus Awan
D. I. Khan
Published in Dawn, July 6th, 2018