Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif on Friday announced the provision of 200 acres of land for the establishment of a residential colony for the fishermen of Gwadar besides the distribution of 2,000 motorboat engines to help them earn a livelihood.
The prime minister stated this in an interaction with local fishermen at Gwadar Business Centre during his day-long visit to the port city.
The measures were announced in view of the problems faced by the fishermen of Gwadar in the shape of displacement and difficulty in access to the sea that was affecting the fishery sector.
The prime minister said his second visit during a month aimed at holding direct interaction with the fishermen and get their feedback on issues concerning them.
To ensure merit-based distribution of marine engines among fishermen, he directed the Planning Ministry to define a criterion with a set of parametres at the earliest.
The process of transparent bidding, he said, would be carried out within three months in line with the PEPRA Rules.
PM Sharif assured the fishermen to address their problems on priority and said the development of the province was “useless” without resolution of the problems of the locals.
He said it was the responsibility of the government to address the challenges faced by the locals of Balochistan.
He said the federal government would take the provincial government on board for consultations on development projects.
On supply of clean drinking water, he said the Gwadar Development Authority had given assurance to complete the laying of new pipes by September.
Regarding electricity, the prime minister said 29-kilometre-long transmission lines for supply of 100 mega watts from Iran was delayed by the previous government, whereas the Iranian side had completed the project at its end.
He said the government would bring this matter to the cabinet for approval to ensure availability of power for Balochistan.
He said it would develop a base-load of electricity and would be later supplemented by solar projects. An announcement would soon be made on the provision of solar panels to the people of Balochistan, he added.
He lauded the sacrifices of the local people by braving the challenges during the construction of Gwadar Port, which was a harbinger for their prosperity.
PM Sharif said the establishment of Gwadar University had been included in Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP) and said maximum funds would be provided for the education of students at par with rest of the country.
He mentioned that the federal government allocated a massive amount of Rs 100 billion in PSDP for the development of Balochistan.
Terming the four provinces as brothers, he emphasized the importance of sharing resources among them for a win-win situation for all.
The prime minister said China was a close friend of Pakistan and dismissed the impression that the Chinese projects of development in Pakistan equate with the “East India Company” during the British Raj.
He said China had always supported Pakistan at diplomatic and economic levels and urged the people of Balochistan to value the foreign investors whose contribution made was significant to the development of Pakistan.
Chief Minister Balochistan Abdul Qudoos Bazinjo linked the development of Gwadar with the prosperity of Pakistan.
He said the federal government had allocated 1652 million for the development of Balochistan projects including the supply of drinking water, and health and education facilities.
He said the provincial government gave approval to over 200 decisions aimed at the prosperity of locals.
He mentioned that unnecessary security check-posts were being removed keeping in view the trouble faced by the people, while the establishment of commercial markets in border areas was on the cards.
The prime minister also listened to the grievances pointed out by fishermen on the occasion and assured them their redressal on priority.
Earlier, he witnessed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding on establishment of a 100-bed hospital with collaboration of GDA and Indus Hospital.
The world-class hospital will provide medical facilities to the people of Gwadar and adjoining areas.