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Posts Tagged ‘Punjab government

Punjab boycotts IRSA meeting

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* Punjab member says province being denied rights owing to undue favours to Sindh
* Shafqat suggests govt appoint federal representative from Gilgit-Baltistan

By Zeeshan Javaid

ISLAMABAD: Due to reservations over the nomination of a federal representative in the Indus River System Authority from Sindh for 10 years and demanding his substitution with a member from Gilgit-Baltistan, Punjab boycotted an IRSA meeting on Tuesday that decided to close down the Chashma-Jhelum Link Canal (CJLC) over protest from a Sindh member.

After the meeting, an IRSA spokesman told reporters that the authority had decided to close the CJLC after protest by a member from Sindh. “Punjab has already used its share of water, therefore there is no other option than to close the project,” he said.

He said IRSA had increased Punjab’s water share from 100,000 to 116,000 cusecs, while the authority would provide the province additional water share from the Mangla Dam.

He said water outflow in Mangla Dam has been increased by 10,000 cusecs, while in Tarbela the outflow would be raised from 5,000 to 95,000 cusecs, however the authority has been providing 3,000 cusecs of water to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and 1,000 cusecs to Balochistan.

IRSA’s member from Punjab, Shafqat Masood, told Daily Times the authority has been working with consensus with all members for the last few years, but Punjab’s rights have been denied in the last three to four months owing to undue favours to Sindh.

He said it had been decided during the Musharraf regime that the federal representative in IRSA would be appointed from Sindh, a practice continuing for the last 10 years, which is unfair and unjustified.

Suggestion: Masood said the Punjab government had written to the federal government to resolve the issue of selection of a federal representative. He questioned, “Why doesn’t the government appoint the member from Gilgit-Baltistan to develop a neutral consensus on the water issue?”

It has been learnt that the Punjab government has stopped its representative from attending IRSA’s meetings and has accused the authority of having turned “blatantly pro-Sindh” and harming the federation.

As IRSA official said the issue has been referred to the Punjab CM who is taking it up with Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani. The department is now waiting for instructions from the provincial chief executive, he added.

TTP offers ‘deal’ to Punjab government

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Daily Times Monitor

LAHORE: A Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) spokesman has said that the organisation would stop targeting public and government places in Punjab if the provincial government gave an assurance that the Taliban would be spared from any action, a private TV channel reported on Monday.

Talking to the channel, Mohmand Agency Ameer Abdul Wali alias Umar Khalid, who is also the deputy of TTP chief Hakeemullah Mehsud, offered the Punjab government a conditional end to its activities in the province.

The offer comes after a statement by Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif where he said, “Musharraf planned a bloodbath of innocent Muslims at the behest of others only to prolong his rule, but the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) opposed his policies and rejected dictation from abroad, thus the Taliban are fighting for the same cause and should not carry out acts of terror in Punjab.”

However, the Punjab CM on Monday said his remarks were misinterpreted and taken out of context. He said that it was a matter of record that he had always talked about Pakistan and had stated on numerous occasions in support of all victims of terror, especially the people of NWFP, “who were bearing the brunt of the terrorist attacks”.

The CM also said the Pakistan Army was fighting for the survival of the country and it was necessary for all political parties and politicians to rise above factional and parochial interests to root out terrorism. “Similarly, there is a need for closer contacts between intelligence agencies of the provinces and the centre,” he said.

Written by rohitkumarsviews

March 16, 2010 at 7:28 am