QUETTA: Chief Minister Aslam Raisani said on Wednesday that the federal government and its bureaucracy were not mindful of the seriousness of the Balochistan issue, allowing foreign countries to interfere in the province.
Presiding over a meeting of the board of governors of Gwadar Development Authority, he said: “Islamabad does not understand the importance of the Balochistan issue” and this attitude was encouraging the anti-Pakistan elements to misguide jobless Baloch youths.
Other countries were spending money to achieve their nefarious designs, he added.
The chief minister said the federal government was not providing funds for the departments devolved to his province under the 18th Amendment. There was no provision in the 18th Amendment or the NFC Award that the provinces would bear all expenditures of the departments transferred to them, he added.
Mr Raisani said all provinces, including Balochistan, had pleaded on the eve of the NFC award and the 18th Amendment that they would not bear expenditures of devolved departments.
“If the federal government does not accept this principle, it should take back the Gwadar port and other devolved departments.”
He said the Aghaz-i-Haqooq-i-Balochistan package, under which the chief minister was made chairman of the Gwadar Development Authority, was not fully implemented so far.
The chief minister said that there was no progress on national highway projects because Islamabad was not releasing funds. The project for laying optic fibre between Karachi and Gwadar was also not implemented.
He dispelled a perception the Balochistan government was spending development funds slowly and said that his government was utilising money in a better way than other provinces.
The chief minister said Islamabad should show seriousness in resolving Balochistan’s problems by providing jobs to educated youths in order to foil conspiracies being hatched by anti-Pakistan elements.
He said that the federal finance ministry should release funds required for completion of development projects, especially highways in the province.
Mr Raisani said his government wanted that the Gwadar port should be used for the Afghan transit trade and he himself would discuss the issue with the Afghan government. The federal government should also take steps in this regard, he added.
“A fully functioning Gwadar port will not only benefit Balochistan but also help boost Pakistan’s economy,” he said.
Gwadar Development Authority’s director general Dr Shoaib Ahmed Gola and Chief Engineer Sajjad Hussain briefed the meeting on the development projects launched in Gwadar.