PESHAWAR: Industrialisation is the key to poverty reduction, employment generation, and economic development, Chief Minister Mahmood Khan said on Sunday.
“PTI government is planning industrial development for overall prosperity of the province,” he said addressing the inaugural ceremony of small industrial estate Dargai at Malakand.
The government policy would produce skilled main power and both skilled and unskilled labour would get employment in the overall industrialisation process in the province. PTI would move with a uniform approach giving equal share to all districts in the development process.
During his daylong visit to Malakand division, the CM announced a campus of the technical university Nowshera in Dargai including the project for residential and staff provision for the Dargai Hospital in the current ADP, establishing a children park, Burrang Tunnel linking to Dargai at Swat Motorway, the rehabilitation and reconstruction of roads and provision of resources for these projects.
Mahmood also announced a grid station in the small industrial state Dargai to resolve the electricity-related problems in the industrial state. MNA Junaid Akbar, Special Assistant for Industry Abdul Karim, MPA Peer Musawir Ali Shah, President small industries association Sajad Khan, MD small industries development board Syed Zahir Ali Shah and Deputy Director Jahanzaib also addressed the gathering. Senator Fida Muhammad, Members Provincial Assembly Fekhre Jahan, Hamayoon Khan, higher authorities of district administration and industrialists participated in the function.
The CM said that besides industry, mineral and energy sector, tourism to has vast potential, therefore, his government was developing it on industrial lines.
Chief Minister said the government had already started the youth employment scheme giving a loan to the youth enabling them to start their own employment which he added was another realistic step for getting our targets and giving maximum employment to the people. The government also wanted industrialisation in the newly merged districts. He had already announced a cottage industrial zone in Bajaur and the similar arrangement would be made another merged districts, he remarked. Mahmood Khan highlighted the importance of the Rashakai Special Economic Zone in the wake of CPEC.
The chief minister directed to give preference to the locals in employment which he added was their right. He directed the district administration to ensure that environmental protection guidelines are followed in the industrial states.
He also disclosed the restoration of railway track up to Dargai.
Earlier on arrival, the Chief Minister was briefed about the small industrial state Dargai comprising 243 Kanal of land developed with the cost of Rs445 million. There are 82 plots, of which 75 have been allotted.
In the whole of the province, there are 13 small industrial estates wherein 542 units are operational and 162,000 people are getting their employment.
Under CM Mahmood directives there would be an industrial estate in all districts of the province for which land was being acquired.
CM Mahmood inaugurated the new Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Company Limited (SNGPL) 12-inch diameter and 104.2 km-long pipelines from Mardan to Swat. The project will greatly help solve gas load shedding and low pressure in the area on a permanent basis. The project cost estimated at Rs2.27 billion.
“We working in the whole province, including Swat, in a long-term development process, however, now we are facing a big challenge to overcome the backwardness of the newly merged tribal districts and soon we will also be successful in this big cause of removing the backwardness of the tribal belt,” he added.
The ceremony was attended by K-P Mines Minister Dr Amjad, Swat DDAC Chairman Fazal Hakim Khan, MNAs Saleemur Rehman, Junaid Akbar Khan, MPAs Azizullah Gran, Mian Sharafat Ali, Pir Musawar Ghazi, Deputy Commissioner Swat Saqib Raza Aslam and other senior officials as well elite of the area in a large number while local people expressed great pleasure on the completion of this project. He said improving the supply of electricity in Swat is another goal to achieve.
The issue of voltage could only be addressed by laying double circuit power supply line to resolve it permanently, on which PESCO must be serious. He said that he wanted to ensure rapid development of the Malakand division including Swat. “Today the People have started feeling a clear difference in the work of the past and the current governments”, he said.
In reply to the welcome address by the MNA Saleem ur Rehman, the Chief Minister clarified that the new hospital of 500 beds in Saidu Sharif will be inaugurated during this June, for he has approved about 600 new vacancies. He said that Rs2 billion were allocated for medical equipment and machinery for this hospital. The contractors who were not paid will be given their outstanding arrears of Rs100 million.
Earlier, GM Sui Gas Company Taj Ali Khan and Regional Incharge Mir Waiss Khan gave a detailed briefing to the Chief Minister about this mega scheme.
Published in The Express Tribune, March 25th, 2019.