QUETTA: Balochistan Chief Minister Nawab Sanaullah Zehri performed the groundbreaking of the Rs9.3 billion Mangi dam project on Tuesday to boost water supply to the Quetta valley, including the provincial capital.

At the ceremony, he spoke at length on the law and order situation, claiming that it was stable and peace had been restored across the length and breadth of Balochistan by eliminating subversive elements.

The chief minister said his government had restored peace with the cooperation of the defence forces and there was a feeling among the people that peace had been restored and their life and property were safe. He said there was an understanding among all the stakeholders for maintaining peace and stability in the interest of the people, the government and the country as whole.

Nawab Zehri took exception to blaming of others for “our own backwardness”, pointing out that there had been Baloch chief ministers since Balochistan was given the status of a province decades ago.

“We should not blame others for our own backwardness,” Nawab Zehri told the audience. He said the Baloch chief ministers were responsible for all the ills in the province.

He specifically mentioned the Rakhni-Sibi highway planned in the 1970s and completed during his tenure. He blamed inefficiency and lack of commitment to completing the challenging projects in the interest of the people for the situation. In fact, there was a greater plan for a Sibi-Jacobabad highway and the Dera Ghazi Khan-Rakhni portion was supposed to be built by the Punjab government as back as in the 1980s, he said.

Similarly, he said the Mangi dam project was visualised in 1963 and now his government was performing the groundbreaking after a lapse of decades and not years.

He said the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, passing through Balochistan, would be the guarantee for development of the province and banishing poverty.

Commander of the Southern Command Lt Gen Aamir Riaz said the people of Balochistan wanted peace and development rather than chaos and violence.

Source: Dawn


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