QUETTA: President of the Balochistan Awami Party Jam Kamal Khan Alyani has said his party has not yet decided to withdraw its support from the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI)-led coalition government at the centre, despite having some reservations about cut in Balochistan’s projects under the federal PSDP.
“As a coalition partner, the Balochistan Awami Party has not taken any decision, or made any announcement, to quit the PTI-led coalition government so far,” he said during a meeting with a delegation of the Balochistan Daily Newspapers Editors Council, who met him here on Tuesday.
He said that the reservations of Balochistan had been presented before the federal authorities concerned and Prime Minister Imran Khan was also aware of them.
“We will talk to the federal government on the issue of federal PSDP and would also protest over it,” Jam Kamal said and added that the protest was only against the federal PSDP.
He said the party did not want to get any ministry or other benefit.
He said the federal Minister for Planning and Development had assured that the tenders of Balochistan’s projects would be released in September and both federal and provincial officials would hold meetings on monthly basis to review pace of work on the development projects.
Mr Alyani said as far as the share of Balochistan in the NFC award was concerned it was constitutionally protected; therefore the province did not need to go towards overdraft. While referring to the huge budget deficit shown in the next financial year’s budget, he said: “We have already prepared a plan on how to bridge the huge gap between expenditure and income.”
He said that since long Balochistan had been stuck in traditional politics and no work had been done for making reforms and improving basic infrastructure. He said that reforms in governance were moving towards progress. He said that in the past funds had been wasted due to wrong planning that created hurdles in the way to the development process.
He said that development projects initiated in 1997 could not be completed so far and the present government had allocated Rs18 billion to complete development projects of 1997 to 2017.
Jam Kamal Khan said that in the past work had been done on those projects in which the chief minister or ministers were interested. “If chief minister does not come out of his constituency the province cannot be developed.
The chief minister belongs to entire province and he has to look after the whole province,” he said. He said that in the next financial year’s budget the development projects had been included which would be completed in two years time.
He said that the coalition government was giving all attention to increasing Balochistan’s resources and so far with adopting measures resources had increased up to Rs25 billion while for the next financial year target had been fixed to increase Balochistan’s income Rs45bn. He said that reforms were under way in 10 departments and for increasing investment in the province the Board of Investment and Trade had been made more effective.
He said that finance department had invested Rs64bn, which would provide Rs9bn annual profit.
He informed the delegation about other plans for developing different sectors including communication and tourism. He said that Balochistan had 1,500 tourism points across the province, which would be connected with main highways.
The Balochistan Daily Newspapers Editor Council delegation briefed the chief minister regarding their grievances and problems. Chief Minister of Balochistan Jam Kamal noted every complaint and assured them of contacting the federal government for the restoration of 25 per cent quota of advertisements.
He also assured them of allocating funds for social media and land allotment for media city where office facilities for the newspapers offices would be provided.
Published in Dawn, June 24th, 2020