LAHORE: Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif has said that students of Balochistan studying in Punjab will play a role of a bridge not only to remove misunderstandings between the two provinces but also enhance mutual love and understanding.
He said that the students of Balochistan studying in various institutions of Punjab were ambassadors of Punjab and Pakistan and should take with them the message of peace and love and inform the people and students of Balochistan about the love and affection they received from Punjab.
The chief minister also announced doubling the quota of students of Balochistan studying in various educational institutions of Punjab from the Punjab Educational Endowment Fund and Cheema Long Scheme.
He was addressing a function held in the honour of students of Balochistan studying in various educational institutions of Punjab. Balochistan Chief Minister Nawab Muhammad Aslam Khan Raeesani, Punjab Senior Advisor Zulfiqar Ali Khosa, provincial ministers of Balochistan and Punjab, leaders of Balochistan PML-N Sardar Yaqub Khan Nasir, Nawabzada Changez Mari, MPAs, MNAs, intellectuals, columnists, teachers and a large number of students attended the function.
Addressing the function, Shahbaz Sharif said that he was thankful to the Balochistan chief minister who came to Lahore for this function and it was a pleasant to see that this function was being held in the same hall where four provinces had agreed upon the NFC Award a few months ago and the Lahore and Punjab had the honour of achieving unanimity on this historic award.
He said that Balochistan was a big province and its resources were limited. He said, “We are proud of the sacrifice of nine crore people of Punjab and the government given in NFC Award for meeting the needs of their Baloch brethren. This step improved the image and unity of Pakistan, and disappointed those enemies of Pakistan who were of the view that the provinces will not achieve consensus on this award.”
He said this was also a good omen that Baloch, Pakhtoon, Barohi and Punjabi students were getting education together in the best institutions of Punjab which had provided them with an opportunity to remove the doubts and misunderstandings by sitting together like brothers and this was a great victory. He said, “We sent the position holder students on study tour of Europe, which included students of four provinces and Azad Kashmir and it was a milestone in improving the image and solidarity of Pakistan.”
He said the Punjab Educational Endowment Fund had been playing a historic role in providing educational opportunities to the talented students and the efforts of vice chairman of this fund, Dr Amjad Saqib, were commendable.
He said the number of male and female students of Balochistan studying in various institutions of Punjab was being doubled through this fund whereas the number of children studying under Cheema Long Scheme was also being increased from 104 to 208.
Shahbaz Sharif said that the Punjabis living in Balochistan were brothers of their Baloch countrymen. He said the Balochistan chief minister himself was disturbed over the loss of lives of innocent people in Balochistan. He said that the students studying in Punjab would play an important role in promotion of love and harmony between the two provinces and these relations of love would further strengthen between the two provinces through education from educational institutions of Punjab.
He said the Balochistan chief minister had informed him that the situation in Balochistan was improving. He said that some complaints of Baloch youth were genuine. He said, “Our party has announced that we will sit together and listen to these complaints patiently and also address the complaints.” He said, “We were shocked over the murder of Baloch leader Nawab Muhammad Akbar Bugti and our party raised this issue that the murderers of Bugti should be exposed and be given punishment as per law.”
He said that Punjab was establishing a modern hospital of cardiology in Quetta and Rs1 billion had been allocated this year for this purpose. Addressing the function, the Balochistan chief minister said that it was imperative to inform the younger generation about latest knowledge and changing trends for moulding Pakistan in accordance with the ideals of Allama Muhammad Iqbal and Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah. He said that effective steps were being taken for promotion of education in Balochistan and recruitment of 4,000 Baloch youth in Pak Army was a matter of pride.