NUSHKI: Prime Minister Imran Khan and Army Chief Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa pictured during their visit here on Tuesday. Other dignitaries are also seen.—PPI
NUSHKI: Prime Minister Imran Khan and Army Chief Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa pictured during their visit here on Tuesday. Other dignitaries are also seen.—PPI

• Claims government spending big on uplift of Balochistan
• Says some foreign hands want to destabilise Pakistan
• Pays tribute to martyred soldiers during visit to FC camp in Nushki

NUSHKI: Prime Minister Imran Khan has announced an increase of 15 per cent in the salary of Frontier Corps and Rangers personnel as he paid rich tribute to soldiers who had sacrificed their lives while repulsing the recent terrorist attacks on security forces’ camps in Nushki and Panjgur.

Speaking to troops at an FC camp in Nushki during his day-long visit along with Chief of the Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa and federal ministers on Tuesday, PM Khan said some foreign hands wanted to destabilise Pakistan to achieve their nefarious designs, but the country’s brave and strong security forces would foil all such attempts with the support of the entire nation.

Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi, Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid, Minister for Information Fawad Chaudhary, Balochistan Governor Syed Zahoor Ahmed Agha and Chief Minister Mir Abdul Qudoos Bizenjo, Quetta Corps Commander Lt Gen Sarfarz Ali and other senior civil and military officials were present on the occasion.

The prime minister said the present government was spending big on the uplift of Balochistan with a number of mega development projects which had never been undertaken by any democratic government in the past. Describing the construction of Chaman-Quetta-Karachi highway as the ‘biggest project’ aimed at transforming the lives of people and conditions of the province, he said the government had already allocated funds for the scheme.

He said more funds would be allocated for the development of the province in future as the government was fully focused on alleviation of backwardness in certain areas, including former tribal areas of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, and Gilgit-Baltistan.

The prime minister said the next phase of China-Pakistan Economic Corridor would hugely benefit the people of Balochistan as it would bring industrialisation and materialise establishment of special economic zones and transfer of technology in the agriculture sector to help boost the country’s productivity. He said China had been assisting Pakistan in increasing its agriculture yields and expressed the confidence that Pakistan would soon become a crops-exporting country.

The prime minister said the security forces were capable of defeating the enemies of Pakistan which they had proved during the recent attacks on the FC camps.

He said that in the presence of such strong and brave soldiers no act of terror could succeed in the country.

“Pakistani nation and its forces are very resilient and strong and no acts of terror can deter them from moving forward,” Mr Khan said, vowing to give a befitting response to the terrorists who were trying in vain to hamper the pace of progress, especially in Balochistan.

The prime minister’s visit came days after the armed forces thwarted two attempts by terrorist outfits in Noshki, Panjgur and Kech. According to the Inter-Services Public Relations, 20 terrorists were killed during the operations in Noshki and Panjgur.

PM Khan said that no other army had faced such unprecedented challenges due to acts of terrorism in the wake of war in Afghanistan. “Pakistan Army excelled in its professionalism and helped in ridding Pakistan of terrorism.”

He said he was shocked to hear about the terrorist attacks in Balochistan and wanted to stand along with the troops who were waging a jihad against the terrorists. “Not only me, but the whole nation stands by our Jawans.”

The prime minister said he came to Noshki to express solidarity with the armed forces on behalf of the countrymen. He observed that in the war against terrorism, the armed forces and law enforcement agencies had fought so bravely that had never happened across the world. With their bravery and sacrifices, they secured the country from terrorists, he added.

Mr Khan said all those who had sacrificed their lives had a special place in heavens, adding that it was an honour for Muslims when they laid down their lives for their country. He said the entire nation had firm belief in the capability of security personnel who restored peace in the country after waging a war on terror. Earlier, senior FC officials briefed Prime Minister Khan on the security situation in Noshki.

The prime minister also interacted with tribal elders of the area and acknowledged their unwavering support in the fight against terrorism and facilitating the initiatives being taken by the government to bring prosperity and development to Balochistan. He assured them of the government’s continued support for timely completion of development projects in Balochistan. He stressed that development of Balochistan was critical for the future of Pakistan.

Published in Dawn, February 9th, 2022

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