Aug 19, 2008

Balochistan: Next President Should Be From Balochistan

Sample ImageThe Chief Minister of Balochistan, Nawab Aslam Raisani, explains why the next President of Pakistan should be from Balochistan.

Below is an article published by the Associated Press for Pakistan:

Chief Minister Balochistan, Nawab Aslam Raisani Monday [18 August 2008] said that the next President of the country should be from Balochistan to bring the province into mainstream politics. He was talking to newsmen after a lunch he hosted in honour of members of Balochistan cabinet, Senators, MNAs and MPAs here at a local hotel.

About naming of any person for slot of the office of the President, he said as the Provincial Assembly of Balochistan had unanimously passed a resolution against President Pervez Musharraf they will also do it unanimously.

He demanded more provincial autonomy and political independence for the federating units as it will bring peace, development and prosperity in the country.

“Political independence and peace are inter-linked, adding if there is no political independence there will be no peace,” he added.

Raisani demanded forthwith recovery of thousands of missing persons in Balochistan, adding that military operation should be stopped and the process of reconciliation be promoted.

He also demanded rehabilitation of the displaced persons in Balochistan.

About charge-sheet against President Musharraf, he said the President violated the constitution, house-arrested the judges of the superior courts besides others violations of rule of law and constitution including military operation in Balochistan, killing of Nawab Akbar Khan Bugti, Nawab Balaach Marri, Kargil operation, Lal Masjid operation, killing of Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto, May 12 [2008] incident in Karachi etc.

He said that FIRs of killing of Nawab Akbar Khan Bugti and Nawab Balaach Marri should be registered against Musharraf as it is not only our demand but the entire Balochistan province.

To a question about coming of Baloch nationalists into mainstream politics, Chief Minister said that all the four big political parties of the coalition government had condemned military operation in Balochistan and Co-chairperson of PPP, Asif Ali Zardari had apologizedwith the people of Balochistan for the injustices against them.

He said, ”if the rights of the people of Balochistan are given to them then I feel no harm in it that they will not come into mainstream politics.”

“We have complaints against the exploitative forces- who so ever they are, the system and not a particular province or people, adding the time has come to seriously think about contentious issues and think about the country.

To a question about launching of big development schemes in Balochistan by the previous government, Raisani said that no big development projects had been carried out in the province, adding that if such was the situation the province would have not crying for help from the federal government.

Raisani said that the province needed an over-draft amount of Rs 22 billion out of which Prime Minister Syed Yousaf Raza Gilani has given Rs three billion from his discretionary funds and Rs three billion as gas royalty.

Besides Deputy Chairman Senate Jan Muhammad Jamali, Federal Minister for Housing and Works Rehmatullah Kakar, Senators, MNAs, Speaker Balochistan Assembly Muhammad Aslam Bhootani, Senior Minister Maulana Abdul Wasy and other members of Balochistan cabinet also attended the lunch.