Balochistan CM defends Jabbar’s nomination to NFC

Updated May 22, 2020

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“We need strong arguments to persuade the Centre into giving Balochistan’s rightful share." — Dawn/File
“We need strong arguments to persuade the Centre into giving Balochistan’s rightful share." — Dawn/File

QUETTA: Balochistan Chief Minister Jam Kamal Khan Alyani has defended the nomination of former senator Javed Jabbar to the National Finance Commission, saying he had “all the knowledge needed” to plead the province’s case at the NFC.

Winding up a debate in the Balochistan Assembly on Thursday, the chief minister recalled that Qaiser Bengali and Gul Faraz had represented the province in the NFC a few years ago and no one opposed their nomination.

“We need strong arguments to persuade the Centre into giving Balochistan’s rightful share. Unfortunately political pressures were seen during previous meetings,” Alyani said.

He criticised the opposition parties for trying to politicise Mr Jabbar’s nomination, warning that it would harm the province’s interests.

The chief minister said Mr Jabbar was conversant with Balochistan’s economic problems and had forcefully advocated the province’s case at various forums.

“Hafeez Pasha and Javed Jabbar have been speaking out for Balochistan and other small provinces for the past 20 years.”

Alyani said the government was ready to take the opposition into confidence over the NFC award.

Referring to criticism of the provincial government’s handling of the coronavirus matter, he said “we were the first to act after the outbreak at a time when other provinces were merely debating how to tackle the scourge”.

Dwelling on the recent spate of terrorism in Balochistan, the chief minister accused India of funding “the terrorists”.

“Some elements living abroad are taking money for killing our soldiers and civilians, but we are determined to wipe out the menace.”

Alyani condemned the recent attacks on security forces in Pir Ghaib and Mand.

Nomination challenged

Former Supreme Court Bar Association president Amanullah Kanrani has filed a petition in the Balochistan High Court on behalf of independent MNA Mohammad Aslam Bhootani, challenging the nomination of ex-Senator Javed Jabbar to the NFC by the Balochistan government.

Mr Kanrani pleaded in the petition that appointing Mr Jabbar for representing Balochistan was violation of the Constitution and against the basic concept of the federation.

Published in Dawn, May 22nd, 2020