To proactively undertake socio-economic progress, development projects in FATA: Ali Zafar

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ISLAMABAD : Minister for Law and Justice Barrister Syed Ali Zafar has said that the socio-economic progress and development projects needed to be efficiently and proactively carried out in FATA, besides the legal and administrative reforms underway after the merger of tribal areas in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP).

Chairing a meeting of the committee constituted by the Prime Minister for facilitating FATA’s and PATA’s merger with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa here on Wednesday, Syed Ali Zafar emphasized the need for achieving five targets including turning tribal areas into cradle of peace and making them free of war, giving people congenial environment so that they could move ahead and have productive lives and providing them sense of security along with social services and fundamental rights as available to the people in other areas of the country.

He said, “We have to work on war footing for completion of the process of merger of FATA areas in the province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.”

The Minister Law and Justice said it was a source of pleasure and satisfaction that the tribal areas had become part of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. “But more hard work is sine qua non for ensuring rights to the people of tribal areas. We have to do work of years in days,” he added.

The committee recommended promulgation of all relevant laws and rules to remove any difficulty in the transition and implementation phases of merger of ex-FATA in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. For this purpose Minister for Law and Justice has himself commenced the work of drafting laws along with concerned authorities.

The committee also decided to take all legal, administrative and financial measures required to uplift the standard of living of people of tribal areas and bring them at par with rest of the country.

Barrister Syed Ali Zafar said that all immediate steps including administrative, financial and judicial must be undertaken for long term guidelines as the merger implementation process must be made smooth and successful at all costs. The committee also observed that provision of funds should be ensured for the development of the areas that constituted FATA.

The committee further directed FBR to come up with workable and comprehensive proposals in the next meeting as far as the system of taxation related to ex-FATA is concerned.

In view of urgency of the matter another meeting of the committee will be held this Saturday (June 23) to review progress on the decisions made in the last meeting.

The meeting was attended by Secretary SAFRON, Secretary Planning, Representative GHQ MO Directorate, ACS FATA, AS PM office, Secretary Finance KPK, Secretary Home KPK and other officials from Ministry of Law & Justice, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Ministry of SAFRON, Ministry of Finance and FBR.

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