Empowering FATA, AJK and GB collective responibility of all federating units: PM Nawaz


ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Thursday said it was a collective responsibility of federal government and provinces to come forward for development and mainstreaming of FATA (Federally Administered Tribal Areas), Azad Jammu and Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan.

“Pakistan belongs to every Pakistani and all areas of the country should have equal rights and access to national resources,” the Prime Minister said this chairing the meeting of federal cabinet here at the PM’s Office.

The cabinet accorded in-principle approval of the recommendations of the FATA Reforms Committee.

The Prime Minister said Pakistanis living in far-flung areas of AJK, GB and FATA must be enabled to get access to services and facilities available to the residents of Lahore, Karachi, Peshawar, Quetta.

He pointed out that those unwilling to extend the required cooperation and assistance for mainstreaming of FATA, GB and AJK were “actually promoting provincialism”.

Nawaz Sharif said development of FATA was the responsibility of the entire nation and country.

“Mainstreaming and developing these less developed areas is not the sole responsibility of people living in Islamabad, but every Pakistani must contribute in this process,” he said.

PM Nawaz mentioned the patriotism and nationalism of the people of FATA and said their history was filled with examples of love with Pakistan.

“They gave immense sacrifices for the defence and sovereignty of Pakistan. Now, time has come to include them in national mainstream and address their deprivation,” he said.

The prime minister stressed the need to promote the spirit of nationalism for the country’s solidarity and include all parts of the country to benefit from the fruits of progress.

“It is our responsibility to focus more on under-developed areas and provide opportunities to the locals to progress in different fields of life,” he said.

The meeting of the Federal Cabinet started with recitation of verses from the Holy Quran.

Secretary SAFRON, Arbab Shahzad briefed the cabinet on recommendations of FATA Reforms Committee.

Governor Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Iqbal Zafar Jhagra attended the Cabinet meeting on special invitation.