Make new provinces or risk another Balochistan: MQM

Farooq Sattar says referendum is needed, envisions a Hazara province of six districts.


Ppi January 02, 2012

ISLAMABAD: A ‘Balochistan-like situation’ could emerge if two new provinces — Hazara and South Punjab — were not created ‘immediately’, the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) warned on Monday.

Addressing a news conference at the National Press Club, MQM leader Dr Farooq Sattar, flanked by Haider Abbas Rizvi, other members of parliament and the party’s central executive committee, said the creation of the provinces  are the ‘need of the hour’, in order to remove a sense of deprivation amongst the people of the two regions.

The 20th constitutional amendment bill has been tabled in the National Assembly, which seeks the creation of new provinces, Sattar added. He said that on the instructions of their chief Altaf Hussain, MQM became the first party to include in its manifesto the demand for the creation of a province in Punjab and Hazara.

Sattar said that the creation of ‘one or more’ provinces in Punjab as well as the creation of a Hazara province has become ‘unavoidable’, because it is necessary for the political and economic solidarity of Pakistan. The latter, he said, was only possible by making the people stakeholders in the political process.

The resources of South Punjab, Hazara

Both South Punjab and Hazara are blessed with natural resources, Sattar highlighted, adding that it was regrettable that in spite of fertile land and cotton and sugarcane crops, there was ‘not a single engineering or agricultural university’ in the south of the province.

Hazara Division, he said, was likewise full of minerals and forests, but neither of the regions had been given their due rights. In order to give these regions a constitutional identity, Sattar emphasised, there should be a referendum. The referendum would decide whether one or more provinces should be created in South Punjab. The MQM leader also urged other political parties to ‘join hands with the MQM in this struggle’.

MQM chalks out a plan

Sattar also provided details of the MQM’s proposed vision of a Hazara province. According to Sattar, the proposed province will consist of six districts: Mansehra, Abbottabad, Kohistan, Haripur, Batagram and Torghar.

Replying to a question as to whether the MQM was interested in making Karachi a province, Sattar said the administrative affairs of the city were running ‘very smoothly’, and there was no need to make it a province.

Published in The Express Tribune, January 3rd, 2012.

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COMMENTS (27)

Dr Raza | 9 years ago | Reply Dear my Friends, The demand of new state or provinces is good for good administration and law and order situation, Look in India they have 32 states if you see resulation 1940 its clear yhat all state shiuld be free in all adminstrative and other policies why we are now start build new Pakistan give empowered all communities and etinic peoples, if Kashmir for Kashmiries Pakhtunikhw for Pakhton Sindh for (old and new Sindhis) Baluchistan for Baluchi why not Hazara for Hazara Peoples and Saraki area for Saraiki peoples please think its good time to do this
Mudassir | 9 years ago | Reply

More provinces, more assemblies, more ministers, more cabinets, more corruption.

More provinces will only create more divide and hatred, instead of solving problems.

Our problem is corruption and division on ethnic, political, religious and secterian basis. Making provinces will not set things right.

Think as a Pakistani. Unite, not divide.

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