Voicing reservations: QWP calls for collating census data in K-P

Sherpao threatens agitation if his demands not met

Mureeb Mohmand February 12, 2017
Aftab Sherpao speaks at the Peshawar Press Club. PHOTO: MUHAMMAD IQBAL/EXPRESS

SHABQADAR: The Qaumi Watan Party (QWP) of Aftab Ahmed Khan Sherpao on Sunday warned of province-wide agitation against the federal government if it does not collate and compile census data in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa just like other provinces.

Speaking at a public meeting organised to mark the 42nd death anniversary of PPP’s founding member Hayat Muhammad Khan Sherpao, the QWP chief said the federal government should immediately withdraw its decision in this regard.

Hayat Sherpao was killed in a bomb blast at Peshawar University’s history department on February 8, 1975. ANP leader Asfandyar Wali Khan and former federal minister late Lala Nisar Muhammad Khan had been charged in his case.

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Sherpao said the QWP vehemently called for evaluating the actual population of Pakhtuns, so that they could get their due share in the National Finance Commission award.

The government, he said, was carrying out the population census on the orders of the Supreme Court, but the government decided to count the province’s population in Islamabad, unlike other provinces where data would be organised independently under the supervision of provincial authorities. “We will agitate against this disparity and any attempt at rigging,” he said.

Stressing the need for including Munda Dam and Pehor Canal in CPEC, he said the province should get its actual share which had been promised during the APC. Pakhtuns, he said, were being deprived of their due rights in CPEC.

He urged Nawaz Sharif to prove himself the prime minister of all Pakistan and not of a single province. “We want Nawaz Sharif to cut ribbons in K-P too,” he said.

Criticising the policy devised by the prime minister of ‘ignoring’ small provinces in development works, he said: “K-P has rendered countless sacrifices for Pakistan … We will be dissatisfied until K-P gets its due share in CPEC.”

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Sherpao also called for merging Fata with K-P, saying that taking Fata reforms off the cabinet’s agenda amounted to a conspiracy against the tribal regions.  “We will resist all such conspiratorial moves … the QWP supports PPA’s march onto Islamabad,” Sherpao said.

He said he would also visit all tribal agencies and Frontier Regions adjacent to Fata to unite them for their rights.

“We will fight alongside Fata tribesmen for their rights … We also demand adequate rights for displaced persons in Fata.”

Among others who attended the public meeting were QWP leaders and K-P’s Senior Minister Sikandar Khan Sherpao and provincial minister Anisa Zeb Tahirkheli.

Published in The Express Tribune, February 12th, 2017.


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