The Peshawar High Court Bar Association (PHCBA) has formed a five-member committee to consult various political parties and find a solution to connect Pukhtun-dominated areas of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan to the Gwadar-Kashghar trade corridor.
Large parts of K-P and most of Balochistan, with the exception of Gwadar, were skipped in a recently-added diversion to the original route. The bar association believed it was essential to connect these ignored parts of the country.
The decision was taken at a PHCBA meeting held on Tuesday to discuss the proposed diversion for the multibillion rupee trade corridor. The association strongly condemned the new route, saying it would be a massive economic blow to the Pukhtuns.
The committee will comprise PHCBA General Secretary Muhammad Ayaz Khan, Abdul Latif Afridi, K-P Bar Council Vice-Chairman Ahmad Farooq Khattak, FATA Lawyers Forum President Ijaz Mohmand and Arbab Usman.
The committee plans to urge various political parties to not allow the proposed route to take shape and results of these consultations would be produced before the provincial and national assemblies. It would also convene a lawyers’ convention to meet the K-P Assembly speaker and discuss the thorny subject.
Ayaz Khan told the participants diverting the route to Punjab would create a sense of deprivation among other provinces.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 4th, 2015.
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