On January 9, accepting advice of Prime minister (PM) Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, his colleagues and political allies, Balochistan Chief Minister Nawab Sanaullah Zehri resigned from his position ahead of a provincial assembly session that was called for voting on a no-confidence motion against him.
Former chief minister Dr Abdul Malik Baloch escorted Zehri to the Governor’s House where he formally submitted his resignation to Governor Mohammad Khan Achakzai. The governor, the constitutional head of the province, instantly accepted the resignation and issued an official notification to this effect.
Through his resignation, Zehri spared the province from a deep political crisis as Mir Abdul Quddus Bizenjo, a Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) lawmaker withdrew his no-confidence motion, and the Balochistan Assembly session was postponed for an indefinite period.
However, his tenure was only darkened by politics towards its end. Zehri’s tenure encompassed multiple milestones and achievements for the province of Balochistan.
1. The release of family of Baloch rebel Dr Allah Nazar
Balochistan government released the family of the top Baloch separatist militant commander who were detained in November while travelling illegally into Pakistan from neighbouring Afghanistan.
Zehri said that during investigation, it was revealed that the women were involved in distributing funds to the banned outfits – BLA and BLF. “Despite committing crimes of illegally crossing border and distributing funds among terrorists, the government treated them with respect,” he said.
“This is the difference between them and us. They are killing our women by planting landmines but we present their families and women Balochi shawls and pay them respect,” he said. “There are many families of terrorists living in various cities of Pakistan and we are personally aware of their whereabouts but we are true Baloch, unlike Allah Nazar, Hyrbyair Marri and Brahamdagh Bugti.
2. First visit on CPEC route from Kashgar to Gwadar
The first trade convoy carrying goods for export through the western route of China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and a Chinese ship arrived at Gwadar Port in November 2016.
The convoy, comprising 60 containers, started its journey to Pakistan from Kashgar through western route and arrived in Quetta in the first phase and later departed for Gwadar.
3. Scores of militants laid arms
At least 70 Baloch separatist militants, including commanders, renounced violence and laid down their arms at a ceremony. Chief Minister Sanaullah Zehri and Commander Southern Command Lt Gen Asim Saleem Bajwa were among the participants.
The Ferraris belonging to Baloch separatist groups announced submitting to the writ of the state and becoming part of the national mainstream, according to an official press release.
In 2013, as many as 23 Baloch rebels, including two commanders surrendered to the authorities, the latest insurgents to lay down their arms in Balochistan.
The militants belonged to the banned Baloch Liberation Army and the United Baloch Army, which have long been fighting government forces.
4. Multiple dams constructed in the province
In January 2017, Senate of Standing Committee on Planning Development and Reforms was told that 450 small dams had been constructed in Balochistan to enhance water storage capacity of the province, and to prevent floods.
The small dams were constructed by indigenous resources of Balochistan government. Additional Chief Secretary Balochistan said that an amount of Rs 7.5 billion were spent on the construction
of these dams.
It was also informed that average 10 million acre feet water was generated through rains out of which 2.5 million acre feet water was conserved, where as remaining was wasted and causing flash floods in the province.
Zehri’s tenure may have been cut short due to a rising political crisis in Balochistan, his achievements will be noted for their worth. The new CM of Balochistan Quddus Bizenjo gathered most votes during the voting today.