Stoppage of PMDC leases in Gilgit Baltistan demanded

Weekly Bang-e-Sahar Karachi Saturday, July 5—July 11, 2008

GILGIT: The rulers should desist from grabbing Balawaristan through Pakistan Mineral Development Corporation (PMDC) leases because if the region is constitutionally not a part of Pakistan, then how Pakistani rulers can can become owners of the resources of this region.Wazir Shafi advocate, a central leader of Balawaristan National Front (BNF) and information secretary of Gilgit Baltistan Democratic Alliance, stated this in an exclusive chat with ‘Bang-e-Sahar’. He said the PMDC has no constitutional and legal right but people of the region have right on the natural resources.The BNF leader said that the government had divided lands owned by locals among the non-locals in violating of the state subject rule. He said the government was responsible to stop the PMDC from plundering the resources of the poor and oppressed local people and expel all the lease holders from the region.Wazir Shafi warned that if the government resorted to usurping the resources by threatening and enticing locals, the step would be strongly condemned. He said the BNF would shortly launch a public contact campaign against unchecked exploitation of the natural resources of the region. He said that if efforts were made to muzzle their voice, they would turn towards the international community.

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