Voice of dissent: Senators to move resolution against G-B chief secretary

Criticise regional govt for giving them the cold shoulder during visit


Shabbir Mir August 12, 2016
Gilgit Baltistan Assembly. PHOTO: FILE

GILGIT: A group of senators have decided to move a resolution against Gilgit-Baltistan chief secretary.  The senators, who were in Gilgit-Baltistan to review projects under China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, criticised the regional government for giving them the cold shoulder during their visit.

The senators expressed their discontent on Friday at Gilgit airport where they addressed the media before flying to Islamabad.

Seeds of discontent

“None of the top government officials, including the chief minister, governor and chief secretary, contacted us during [our] visit,” Muttahida Qaumi Movement Senator Mian Ateeq said. He was part of the special Senate committee.

The remarks by Mian Ateeq were also echoed by Pashtoonkhwa Milli Awami Party of Balochistan leader Usman Kakar and PPP Karim Khawaja.



“We can’t do anything against the chief minister and governor but we will move a resolution against the chief secretary for this attitude,” Kakar said.

He added they realised only after visiting G-B that the region was not being treated fairly. “Discrimination against this region is far more than what we had thought before visiting,” he added.

Network of concerns

The committee, headed by Pakistan Peoples Party Senator Taj Haider, will submit its recommendation in Senate.

On the occasion, Haider said the purpose of visiting G-B was to meet various stakeholders and obtain firsthand information. “But now we are deeply concerned about this region as people here feel left out and [sidelined].”

Haider said they proposed various plans that could be incorporated in CPEC, 450 kilometres of which pass through G-B. “The Karakoram Highway should be made a double route and promotion of tourism should be the top priority as the region has vast potential.”

To a question, Haider said the committee would submit recommendations in Senate to settle the constitutional limbo of the region.

“G-B is a peaceful region, but the situation can’t remain the same if the issue isn’t settled,” he said. “In principle, the region can be made the fifth province of the country.”

Published in The Express Tribune, August 13th, 2016.

 

COMMENTS (1)

Amanullah Khan | 5 years ago | Reply We are happy the Senate Committee has realized the step motherly treatment meted out with the people of GB of the Gilchistan province. We appreciate their visit to get first hand information about the issues of the people from the people. The bottom line of the realization is a separate province for the most neglected and the most patriotic Pakistanis. The love for Pakistan among the people of Gilchistan is not comparable with any other province. Mr. Iqbal Hyder please we want our own province the Gilchistan declared by the parliament without compromising with our enemies, the Kashmiri (AJK) leaders who take it granted that we are their subjects. The bureaucracy who rule the GB without any accountability is in favor of the status quo which serves the best. In case of accepting our genuine demand of our own province, we will take care of all of the issues which we are facing since liberation from Dogra Raj. Alhamdulillah we have the capacity to serve our people. As far as the CPEC is concerned we demand for including the construction of Bounji Dam and two express ways from Gilgit to Skardu and Chitral.
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