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Let bygones be bygones, urges PM

November 09, 2012

Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf addressing the members of Balochistan Cabinet while sitting on the floor at Gwadar. Chief Minister Balochistan Nawab Aslam Raisani and Minister for Science and technology, Changez Khan Jamali, are also seated. -INP PHOTO

QUETTA: Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf said on Friday that “we should forgive each other” and move towards a new era of development and progress in Balochistan.

Talking to reporters after attending ceremonies of a civic centre and an information technology project in the port city of Gwadar, he said: “We must forget the past and move forward with a positive thinking as has been done by PPP’s co-chairperson and President Asif Ali Zardari.”

“All of us should forget the past mistakes and atrocities committed by the previous government in Balochistan and move forward to achieve the goal of development and make it a developed and prosperous province,” he said.

He said that actions of past governments exacerbated the sense of deprivation among the people of the province.

He also said that there was no clash between the army and judiciary and all government institutions were working within their prescribed parameters.

He said that elements creating such an impression would not succeed in their design.

He said he wanted to make it clear that political parties, media, civil society and lawyers played a crucial role in the struggle for independence of judiciary.

The prime minister said that democracy had been restored after painstaking efforts; certain elements tried to derail the process but failed.

He said the government which had come to power through democratic process, believed in upholding democracy and strengthening democratic institutions.

He said that because of freedom enjoyed by political parties and the media democracy and democratic institutions had flourished over the past five years.

He said Balochistan had big potential for growth and development and exploitation of its natural resources would transform the economic situation not only of the province but of the entire country.

He said that God had bestowed the country with a big coast which would play a vital role in economic stability.

The main beneficiary of the Gwadar port, he said, would be the people of Balochistan.

“The people of Balochistan are owners of their natural resources which will be spent on the development and prosperity of the province.”

He said the army had constructed roads and provided security to the Gwadar port and other important installations.

He said although certain elements were trying to create law and order problems to deprive the province of the fruit of progress it was moving ahead. Balochistan’s development is Pakistan’s development.

He said that Rs6 billion IT project for the port city would provide facilities for education.

“We want everyone to have internet and cellphone facilities in Gwadar to get swift access to global information.”

The prime minister said the IT university experts and related people had completed initial work on the project and efforts would be made to complete it soon.

He said the federal government was paying attention to education in Balochistan and thousands of students had been admitted to institutions where they were getting free education.

Raja Ashraf said the port would be linked with the Motorway and national highways soon.

He said he had already released funds for the Kachhi Canal and Khuzdar-Ratodero motorway projects.

He announced that all employees working in the Gwadar Port and Shipping Corporation would be regularised and the Gwadar Fish Harbour would be merged into Gwadar Port Authority.