Making CPEC controversial: Pashtoon bigotry and separatist tendency raises its ugly head again
Why Shouldn’t CPEC pass through Punjab?
“Pervez Khattak:The biased,bigoted,intolerant and judgmental Pashtoon Making China-Pakistan economic Corridor(CPEC) controversial.The never ending invisible and unnoticed Pashtoon exploitation of Punjab,Sindh and Balochistan resources needs to be checked and stopped. Pashtoon bigotry and separatist tendency raises its ugly head again."Then we will take an extreme step",said Mr.Khattak.Go ahead Mr.Khattak take that extreme step.Who is stopping you”.
CPEC won’t pass through KP if due share denied: Khattak
PESHAWAR: Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Pervez Khattak on Saturday warned his government won’t allow the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor to pass through the province if the centre denied the due share in its route to the latter.
Addressing the ‘Corridor Convention’ arranged by Pakhtunkhwa Ulasi Tehreek (PUT) here, the chief minister said if KP didn’t benefit from the CPEC, then the federal government should divert its route away.
“If KP doesn’t gain from the (CPEC) project, then nobody will be able to get anything from the whole project,” he said.
Mr Khattak lambasted Punjab for ‘trampling on the rights of smaller provinces’ and said everything was being manipulated to benefit the country’s largest province.
He said the federal government was denying KP the due rights whether it was oil, gas, water or net hydel profit issue and thus, forcing the provincial government to go for agitation.
CM regrets not a single brick laid on Haripur-DI Khan section of corridor
“They (centre) declare all those raising voice for the rights of the province traitors,” he said.
The chief minister said Punjab needed to change its attitude towards smaller provinces and that all political forces of the province were united on the CPEC issue.
He said the CPEC was not just a road and instead, it was a combination of many projects, including electricity, gas, LNG, fiber optics and industrial zones.
Mr Khattak said on May 28, the federal government had agreed to go for the western route of corridor as a first priority.
“Work on many of the road projects, which are part of the CPEC project, has begun but ironically, not a single brick has been laid on the Haripur-Dera Ismail Khan section falling in the limits of KP,” he said.
The chief minister said all political leaders should join hands and raise voice for the rights of the province otherwise they would get nothing from the whole project.
He said the western route of the CPEC was 500-600 kilometers shorter than the eastern one and that the area falling under its western leg was also backward and needed to be completed as the first priority.
Mr Khattak said in December last, he had written a letter to the federal government on several contentious issues and demanded copies of agreement signed with the Chinese, but the response was still awaited forcing the provincial government to raise the matter in public.
“We’re not being taken into confidence on this issue. We’ll take this issue to the Council of Common Interest, the provincial and national assemblies, and other available forums.
The chief minister said his government would stand for the rights of the province and that all political leaders and people should support it.
KP Assembly Speaker Asad Qaisar, who was also in attendance, said parliamentarians would fulfil their responsibilities on the CPEC issue and that PTI chief Imran Khan had directed the provincial government to take up the issue with the federal government without delay.
He said KP’s industry, cities and social fabric was destroyed by the war on terrorism and therefore, they should be rehabilitated and the CPEC could play a crucial role for it.
KP senior minister and Qaumi Watan Party provincial president Sikandar Hayat Khan Sherpao told participants that the CPEC project couldn’t be completed without the participation of KP.
He said if political forces of the province didn’t join hands for rights, then the history won’t forgive them.
Mr Sikandar said Pakistan was not being run like a federation and that the development of all federating units was vital for the country’s progress.
“Pakistan does not look like a federation today as one province (Punjab) is dominating others,” he said.
Awami National Party provincial general secretary Sardar Hussain Babak said the CPEC was the game-changer for the province’s future and that it was an issue of life and death for the people of the province.
“We’ll not allow anyone to usurp the rights of the province in this crucial project,” he said.
Awami Workers Party leader Fanoos Gujjar, Jamaat Islami lawmaker Syed Gul and former KP Chamber of Commerce and Industry president Zahid Shinwari also spoke on the occasion.
PUT convener Dr Said Alam Mehsud briefed participants about the project, especially the federal government’s ‘somersaults’ on it.
He said the PUT would organise conventions of traders, industrialists, lawyers, writers and students to apprise them of the actual situation on the issue.
Published in Dawn, January 3rd, 2016
Khattak threatens ‘extreme step’ over CPEC project
Senator Mushahid Hussain Syed along with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Pervez Khattak and members of provincial assembly addresses a press conference in Peshawar. — INP
PESHAWAR: The political fraternity of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has warned the federal government through Senator Mushahid Hussain Syed against any ‘deception’ on the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project.
“I warn if the federal government does not address the reservations of KP about the (CPEC) project, then we will take an extreme step. And you (centre) will see what we are going to do,” Chief Minister Pervez Khattak told a news conference with Mr Mushahid after attending the briefing of the parliamentary party leaders here on Thursday.
“The KP demand is very simple: implement the decisions of the ‘All-Party Conference’ held in Islamabad on May 28 and build complete corridor. We don’t need a highway,” said Mr Khattak flanked by parliamentary leaders in the KP Assembly.
The chief minister said if the federal government wanted to build a highway only, then the province had sufficient resources to do so on its own.
Senator Mushahid declares KP’s reservations on project genuine, wants ‘APC’ joint declaration implemented
Mr Mushahid, who heads a parliamentary committee overseeing the CPEC project, agreed with Mr Khattak, saying the reservations of KP are genuine and the route will be completed in line with the joint declaration of the ‘APC’.
The project containing fiber optic, railway line, gas and oil pipeline, LNG, electricity and several economic zones will connect Gwadar Port to Kashgar in the north-western China.
Parliamentary leaders of Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Fazl, Jamaat-i-Islami, Awami National Party, Qaumi Watan Party and Pakistan People’s Party, Speaker of the provincial assembly Asad Qaisar and ministers attended the briefing.
The chief minister said the provincial assembly had unanimously passed two resolutions demanding of the federal government to build the corridor in accordance with the ‘APC’ decisions.
He said it was decided in the APC meeting that the CPEC western route would be completed in the first phase to be followed by the construction of the eastern route.
“Later, we learnt that the western route has been restricted only to a road, which is unacceptable for us,” he said warning that KP would take an ‘extreme step’ if the centre ignored the ‘APC’ decisions.
He said the project’s additional components including fiber optic, railway track, gas and oil pipeline, LNG and other facilities had been attached with the eastern route of the corridor to be laid between Gwadar and Rawalpindi.
Mr Khattak said there was nothing in the project for KP except the highway.
He said the people of Hazara should also not live in a fool’s paradise as they were not getting much more from the project as the route would be passed through Hazara division.
The CM said the federal government should give priority and incentives to underdeveloped areas like KP and Balochistan in the project instead of shifting all benefits to Punjab, which was already developed.
He complained the centre had also stopped issuing the No Objection Certificate to foreign investors under the pretext of security situation.
Mr Khattak said investors were willing to put their money in KP but the federal government did not issue them NOCs.
“If the centre considers KP to be insecure for investment, then it should not start work on the corridor,” he said.
On the occasion, Mr Mushahid declared the CPEC ‘fortune-changer’ for the country and said the project was a golden opportunity for Pakistan to progress.
He said the vital project did not belong to a single province, political party, government or institution.
The parliamentarian said he came to Peshawar to understand KP’s viewpoint about the project and would discuss it with the centre.
He said federal planning and development minister Ahsan Iqbal would brief parliamentary leaders from KP about the CPEC on Jan 6.
“The grievances of KP are genuine and that the decisions of APC should be implemented in letter and spirit,” he said.
Mr Mushahid said major grievances of Balochistan had been resolved and reservations too would be resolved amicably.
Published in Dawn, January 1st, 2016
Khattak threatens agitation to secure rights of KP on CPEC
BUREAU REPORT — UPDATED NOV 26, 2015
PESHAWAR: Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Pervez Khattak has threatened widespread protests against the federal government’s alleged plan to ‘deceive’ the province and deprive it of the due rights in the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor project.
An official statement issued here on Wednesday quoted Khattak as saying his government would protest the federal government’s ‘deceitful act’ at every relevant forum to protect the rights of the province.
It said the provincial government had unearthed the federal government’s alleged plan to deprive the province of its due rights in the context of the CPEC though the latter had earlier made all announcements and commitments in this respect publicly.
Warns his govt will also withdraw cooperation for project if reservations not addressed
Pervez Khattak said all parliamentary parties in the KP Assembly would be taken on board for the proposed ‘unprecedented protest campaign.’
He warned his government would withdraw its cooperation being extended for executing the CPEC project until their reservations were not removed.
The chief minister said the support withdrawal actions by KP government might also be including stoppage of the land acquisition process for the KP portion of the project.
He announced the decision while presiding over a meeting, which was attended by Speaker of the KP Assembly Asad Qaisar and mineral development minister Aneesazeb Tahirkheli, additional chief secretary Dr Hamad Awais Agha, chairman of the Strategic Planning Unit at the CM Secretariat Sahibzada Muhammad Saeed, leader of KP Ulasi Tehrik Dr Said Alam Mahsood and lawyer Tariq Afghan.
Commenting on the alleged designs of the federal government in connection with the CPEC project, the Chief Minister lamented that the federal government betrayal had put the KP government as well as people of the province in grave kind of shock and shattered their trust in the federal authorities.
Criticising the federal government attitude towards CPEC plan with reference to KP rights, Khattak recalled that a national consensus was evolved when KP government had voiced against the usurpation of the province’s rights in respect of the CPEC and it was assured publicly by the federal government that all provinces will get equal share in the CPEC project and the western route will not only be included in the project but it would also be built on priority bases.
He regretted that nothing of sort had been found in the Planning Commission documents as well as the federal budgetary allocations.
He said the federal government was hiding everything regarding the CPEC project and kept the smaller provinces including KP in the dark.
Dr Said Alam Mahsood informed the meeting that the federal government had allocated a share of only 1.4 per cent for KP contrary to the Punjab that would be getting 80.4 per cent of the total budget allocation of Rs359 billion for the years 2015-17.
He said the KP’s share would be spent on the only hydropower project of Suki Kinari in Mansehra district.
The meeting was informed that the six key components of the CPEC project had also been changed in favour of Punjab and the Dera Ismail Khan–Mianwali-Burhan link of the western route was also missing in the latest map of the CPEC route, which was kept secret by the federal government.
It was also found that Mianwali was being linked with Islamabad through another planned road at a cost of Rs10 billion under public sector development programme.
Dr Mahsood referring to the Planning Commission of Pakistan documents and sources said the total cost of the CPEC project had been calculated at $145 billion, which would be extended to the government of Pakistan in the shape of loan, while the promised $500 billion Chinese investment would be made only at the start and end points of the corridor and that, too, not before 2024.
It was also pointed out that Rs95 billion (51.35 per cent) of the total Rs185 billion budget earmarked for the current year for the motorway project of the corridor would be spent on the Eastern Route, while the remaining 48.65 per cent budget would be utilised for connecting Lahore with Gwadar and Karakorum Highway.
With reference to the monographic study of the roads and their facts reflected in the maps and other documents of the federal government, it was revealed that the Metro Bus and underground fast track railway project had been incorporated into the CPEC, which will link Rawalpindi with Karachi through Gujranwala, Lahore, Multan and Faisalabad and thus, totally excluding Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan from the project.
Published in Dawn, November 26th, 2015