The Minister for Planning, Development, and Special Initiatives, Asad Umar, recently spoke about the government’s plans to spend Rs. 600 billion on development projects in nine districts of southern Balochistan during the next three years.
The federal government will provide Rs. 540 billion and the Government of Balochistan will contribute the remaining Rs. 60 billion.
He made this announcement on Thursday while addressing a press briefing with the Minister for Information and Broadcasting, Shibli Faraz; the Minister for Defense Production, Zubaida Jalal; and the Minister for Communication, Murad Saeed.
Minister Asad Umar said that the government will focus on improving the living standard of the locals and that it would also engage the private sector in development projects in the area. He added that this package was prepared under the special direction of Prime Minister Imran Khan.
Umar said that agriculture in southern Balochistan is the most important source of income for locals for which they need water, and that dams would have to be built for this.
“Once the water is also available, people start producing grains, fruits, and other products. But they did not have the resources to sell them in big cities. So, the government will establish industries in those areas to enable them to preserve and add value to their products,” he said.
The government will also build sixteen new dams that will irrigate about 150,000 acre of land. Additionally, approximately 640,000 children will receive distance education. The Waseela Taleem Programme will give 83,000 children free education with a stipend of Rs. 1,500 to boys’ parents and Rs. 2,000 to girls’ parents on a monthly basis.
Regarding the health sector, the minister added that two hundred centers will be upgraded and 35,000 young people in the area will be trained in freelancing.
Furthermore, under the Sehat Nashonuma program, pregnant women and newborn babies will be provided with food to prevent the stunted growth of children. Billions of rupees will be spent on road projects as well under the program.