GILGIT: In an apparent criticism of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf chairman Imran Khan, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said he was not visiting Gilgit-Baltistan for container politics.
“I am not here for container politics, it was my desire to visit Gilgit-Baltistan (G-B),” the premier said, while addressing a gathering after inaugurating a number of development projects in the region.
Claiming he is not here to abuse anyone, Nawaz said, “I never replied to an abuse with an abuse. Their politics is based on abuse but mine is based on serving people.”
Apprising people of the development projects his government aims to undertake in the region, the premier said, “We will develop a Gilgit-Juglot-Skardu road.”
“Diamer-Basha dam is the biggest project in Pakistan’s history,” he added.
“Flights will be increased as will railway services which will extend from Khunjerab to Islamabad.”
“We wish to extend the existing airport or make a new one so jets can land in the region and cargo planes can land to export fruit,” the prime minister added.
Nawaz further announced he will build a Baltistan Univeristy.
Regarding his laptop scheme, the prime minister announced 208 laptops will be distributed within the students of the region.
“Intelligent students will be given Rs2 million in loan to further their education,” he announced.
“G-B government should promote export of fruit,” Nawaz said.
“Pak-China economic corridor will deliver dividends for the area,” the premier added.
Further, he added, “Forestation in G-B is the top priority of the government.”
“We will also make Hunza a district,” he added.
The premier, welcomed by Governor Gilgit Baltistan Barjees Tahir and other officials, addressed the Gilgit Baltistan (GB) Council earlier today.
Read: PM Nawaz Sharif inaugurates new terminal at Multan International Airport
PM Nawaz is accompanied by Information Minister Pervaiz Rashid, Special Assistant to Prime Minster Irfan Siddiqui and Chairman BISP Marvi Memon.
The premier was briefed about the special force which was being raised for Karachi's security.
The governor lauded the efforts of PM Nawaz for the announcement of a development package of Rs 47.2 billion package for Gilgit and Baltistan.
Further, it was discussed how PM Nawaz's government was striving to bring GB up to par with other parts of the country. The PM disclosed that a 30-year policy had been devised to save forecasts in the area; for which a work plan was also submitted to the PM.
PTI chairman accuses PM of pre-poll rigging
Criticising PM Nawaz’s announcement of development projects as “electoral gimmick,” Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf chairman Imran Khan accused the premier of pre-poll rigging.
Taking to social networking site, Twitter, Imran wrote:
Strongly condemn Nawaz Sharif's continuing efforts at pre poll rigging in GB by announcing dev package for GB as an electoral gimmick 1/2— Imran Khan (@ImranKhanPTI) April 14, 2015
2/2 This follows his earlier moves to appoint his fed minister as governor GB, a PMLN loyalist caretaker govt & election commissioner.— Imran Khan (@ImranKhanPTI) April 14, 2015
This brazen pre poll rigging is absolutely unacceptable. PMLN must learn essentials of democracy beginning with fair & free elections. 1/2— Imran Khan (@ImranKhanPTI) April 14, 2015
2/2 So far Nawaz Sharif has not been able to rise above cronyism and use of money to buy influence.— Imran Khan (@ImranKhanPTI) April 14, 2015
G-B budget unveiled
The council budget for G-B was announced by PM Nawaz at Rs780 million for 2014-15, a member of the G-B council, Amjad Hussain confirmed.
Hussain, however, left the meeting after the budget was announced in protest of Marvi Memon being present who he said is not a member of the council and termed her presence against the protocol.
Serious reservations were voiced by Hussain pertaining to the undecided constitutional status of G-B.
"This is not a good omen. Your government has weakened G-B's governance order by appointing a non-local governor in the region," Hussain told the premier, referring to Barjees Tahir.
He questioned if the region was not part of Pakistan why were mega projects like the Diamer-Bhasha dam and the proposed Pak-China railway track are made in G-B.
He concluded that the mistakes committed by Pakistan Peoples Party should not be repeated by Nawaz's government.
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