Elected parliamentarians and representatives of local government institutions threatened to resign from office, while people from trade circles announced a shutter-down strike against the extension of the Customs Act 1969.
This was stated by an Awami National Party MPA from Swat after an all-parties conference in Chakdara, Lower Dir. The meeting was led by the ANP on Sunday.
In detailed speeches at the conference, the speakers showed severe resentment over the extension of Customs Act 1969 and reminded the government of the possible economic disorder and wide range of unemployment and poverty if the decision was not withdrawn.
They said the problems would double as the region is also faced with natural calamities and trends of violence and terror, all of which badly affected not only the public, but led to the destruction of infrastructure in all seven districts of the Malakand region.
They also criticised the government for issuing the notification when hundreds of people from certain pockets were busy recovering bodies of dear ones who were crushed in landslides triggered by heavy rains.
ANP’s APC was attended by many. Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf’s MNA Junaid Akbar Khan, chief minister’s adviser Dr Amjad Ali Khan, Jamaat-e-Islami’s Muzzafar Said, who is also the finance minister of the province, JI Lower Dir chief and MPA Ijazul Mulk Afkari, JI MNA Sahibzada Yaqoob Khan, Pakistan Peoples Party’s Najamuddin Khan and MPA Sahibzada Sanaullah, Fanoos Gujar, the central chief of Awami Workers Party; Qaumi Watan Party’s Bakht Baidar Khan and Maulana Mohammad Javed of Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl were among those present.
ANP Lower Dir President Hussain Shahchaired moderated the conference.
Besides him, ANP’s Advocate Wajid Ali Khan, Zahid Khan, Ayub Khan Ashari, MPA Jaffar Shah and several others also attended and spoke on the occasion.
Before ANP, a similar conference was held by Swat Traders Federation in Mingora, traders in Timergara, transporters from Swat and almost all the stalwarts of various political forces.
Published in The Express Tribune, April 11th, 2016.
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