In a speech marking the sixth anniversary of the 2005 earthquake, Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani, while announcing a list of projects, reaffirmed the government’s support for the “freedom, development and prosperity of Kashmir”.
“The people of Pakistan and Kashmir are bound together historically, religiously and geographically,” Gilani said, addressing the inaugural ceremony of AJK’s first medical college in Muzaffarabad on Saturday.
The prime minister announced to name the medical college after veteran Kashmiri political leader Mirwaiz Molvi Farooq, who is also the father of All Parties Hurriyat Conference leader Mirwaiz Umer Farooq.
The premier expressed hope that travel and trade between the two parts of Kashmir will lead to a “destination of freedom”.
He also announced the set up of an Information Technology University in Rawalakot and the creation of 2,000 jobs in the AJK police department.
Speaking of the success of the reconstruction programme, he said that 99 per cent of earthquake survivors in the rural areas of AJK have completed the reconstruction of their houses with financial assistance from the government.
“It is highly satisfactory for us that the UN has rated our housing project as one of the most successful programmes in the world after a disaster of such magnitude,” he said.
He added that 3,752 reconstruction projects, at a cost of Rs58 billion have been completed while work on 2,613 is under progress.
Published in The Express Tribune, October 9th, 2011.
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