SWAT: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Wednesday paid a visit to the de-radicalisation center at Sabawoon in Mingora, Swat. Lauding the role of Pakistan Army in bringing peace and stability to the area, he approved in principle the construction of a cantonment in the city.
Director General Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) Major General Asim Bajwa tweeted that the prime minister had "acknowledged the army's efforts in bringing peace" and "approved a brigade-sized cantt for Swat".
The de-radicalisation centre is rehabilitating the youth of the affected areas of Swat. According to Maj-Gen Bajwa, over 2, 200 youth have been reintegrated into the society till now.
Nawaz commended the armed forces for restoring peace in the area and completing the reconstruction of schools, hospitals, roads and bridges in collaboration with the civic administration and the people. He said their services would be remembered for long.
The prime minister said that the government was striving to free Pakistan from extremism and that he was aware of the unemployment and economic deprivation in different parts of the country. He said these problems were being addressed through striving toward a more uniform distribution of national resources in these parts of the country.
Nawaz hoped that the de-radicalisation initiative could be replicated in other parts of the country.
"I wish that this programme is extended to other parts of the country as well, where the youth has adopted such path and needs attention. They should be made healthy members of the society through constructive engagement."
"They are not enemies of Pakistan but have lost their direction," he added.
Youth Business Loan Scheme
The Prime Minister also addressed applicants of the Youth Business Loan Scheme at Swat. He said he supported a population-based division of resources for an equitable distribution.
He said the people of Swat, Malakand and adjoining areas have suffered a lot during the past few years and unfortunately couldn’t get ample opportunities for development.
“The people of Swat are most deserving for this scheme”, he said.
The Prime Minister further said that there are no political considerations of this scheme.
“I am the Prime Minister of Pakistan and it is my responsibility to serve people of all provinces without any differentiation”, said the Prime Minister.
He added that the award of loan is purely based on merit and nepotism or favouritism will not be afforded at any cost.
“Banks never entertained our youth who wanted to stand on their feet, and only catered for the powerful elite. Through this scheme we have opened the previously closed bank doors for our youth, which is a first example of its kind”, said the Prime Minister.
He advised the applicants to utilise this opportunity not only for their own benefit but also for the collective benefit of the Pakistani nation.
Comments are moderated and generally will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive.
For more information, please see our Comments FAQ
Another Cantt. O God Now Swatis just be ready to be treated like stranger in your own land.Also be prepared to apply for visa (cantt sticker) otherwise you won't be welcomed there. The top cadre of army are more like real estate agent interested in grabbing lands.Please can any informed man/woman give me example of any other army with so much real estate in prime locations.
If actions will not result in Indian goods, traffic and tourists in Swat, then they are fraud. If Nawaz Sharif is serious about peace, then he should take actions that will make Indian tourists feel comfortable enjoying the beauty of Swat.
The land with precious stones and minerals. KPK parliament should withdraw the authority they previuos gave to Parvez M for army intervention in the first place. Pakistan army is fully trained to protect and operate from cantonments as the Brits did in colonial times. It has not the ability to protect Pakistan borders.Both Sharif and Imran are from the same wood, controlled by the Army.
Rex Minor :
How about we first investigate the extra-judicial killings and disappearances that took place in swat (suspected to have been committed by the army) before we give them a permanent presence there?