ISLAMABAD - Prime Minister Imran Khan said Pakistan also wanted friendly relations with brotherly Afghanistan, adding peace would return to that country after the establishment of a government there which included all political parties and all stakeholders. “Insha Allah, there will be peace in Afghanistan, which will boost trade and bring prosperity in the region. That time is not far away”, he added. Similarly, the Prime Minister said Pakistan enjoyed good relations and wanted to further strengthen its ties with brotherly Iran, which stood with Pakistan in 1965 war.
The Prime Minister recalled his visit to Bajaur in 1992 and said a picture of this beautiful area was published in his book on tribal areas, adding, he had been striving to visit the areas for the last 27 years but could not make it due to difficult situation in tribal areas.
He said the people of tribal areas faced many hardships due to war against terrorism as they lost their businesses, jobs, houses, and even had to face displacement, adding, “but now your time of ease has started.” The Prime Minister said that since tribal areas have been destroyed due to war against terrorism, the government had decided to allocate 3% of National Financial Award (NFC) to tribal areas. He said that with PTI having governments in Center, Punjab and KP, the federal government in this respect would also approach the provincial governments in Sindh and Balochistan to get their nod on it. The Prime Minister said as the people of tribal areas had rendered immense sacrifices for the country, it was the duty of people from across Pakistan, for being Muslims, to help uplift the people of tribal areas. He, however, added the process of development in tribal areas could take time, the people should be cautious of the enemies of Pakistan, who would try to disrupt peace in the tribal region by misguiding the people of tribal areas. The Prime Minister said that FATA-KP merger would help boost development in tribal areas where health and educational facilities would be provided with the opening of hospitals, colleges and universities. Allaying the fears of Levies and Khasadars, he assured them that after the merger of erstwhile FATA with KP, they would not lose their jobs and a structure was being introduced to absorb them in KP Police and their wages would be improved.
The Prime Minister spoke about the country’s economic woes but also expressed his confidence that with various friendly countries including Saudi Arabia,UAE, Malaysia, China and Qatar bringing investments, the economic situation would further improve.
He also announced Rs. 2 billion grant to offer interest-free loans to the youth of Bajaur so that they could start their own businesses.
In order to address the issue of electricity in far flung areas of Bajaur, the Prime Minister announced to install solar panels in 300 mosques, Grid Stations for Bajaur and Mohamnd and 8000 jobs for local youth.
He said sports facilities would be built in the area for which funds have been released, adding, Industrial Zone would be established in the area to promote small businesses and cottage industry.
The Prime Minister said that the government would introduce Sehat Insaf Card in tribal areas including Bajaur under which every family would have Rs. 720,000 per annum at their disposal to get them treated from any hospital.
He also assured the people of Bajaur that they would soon be getting the facility of Internet.