Pakistan News

APC to be called on economic route project

APC to be called on economic route project

PESHAWAR: Pakhtun Awareness Movement (PAM), a civil society organisation, has announced to organise an all parties conference in Peshawar to take a unified stand on the Pak-China Economic Corridor project.

Speaking at a news conference here on Friday, PAM’s president Shakeel Waheedullah said that ‘ignoring’ Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in the mega project was a conspiracy against Pakhtuns.

He lamented that Pakhtun leaders of different parties had avoided taking clear stand on the issue and depended only on press statements in this connection. He said it was not an issue of mere media statements but needed a protest movement to force the federal government to what he said restore the original route.

The Pakhtuns, including women and children, have offered matchless sacrifices for restoration of peace, but the federal government has totally ignored them in the project, he claimed.

Mr Waheedullah said that it was duty of Pakhtun leaders, especially Asfandyar Wali Khan and Aftab Ahmed Sherpao, to materialise their claims about working for Pakhtuns’ rights and announce a protest movement for their rights.

The KP province, he claimed was also part of the country and the people had similar rights but the federal government was serving the interests of Punjab only.

Mr Waheedullah said internally displaced persons, unemployed youth, closure of industrial units and excessive loadshedding were the issues pushing the Pakhtuns towards poverty and backwardness.

“The impression that Punjab doesn’t want KP to make progress is proving to be a reality,” he claimed.

He said that a grand jirga would soon be convened which will also be attended by representatives of trade unions, lawyers, labourers’ associations and civil society organisations to discuss the ‘step-motherly’ behaviour of the federal government, and devise an effective strategy for raising voice against the injustices meted out to Pakhtuns.

Mr Waheedullah demanded of chiefs of different political parties, including Maulana Fazlur Rehman, Asfandyar Wali, Sirajul Haq, Aftab Sherpao, Mehmood Khan Achakzai and others, to join hands for collective efforts to get restored the original trade route.

Published in Dawn, April 25th, 2015

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