Youth empowerment essential for bright future: Ahsan


Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives, Professor Ahsan Iqbal here on Tuesday reiterated that political stability was a must for taking the country towards progress, prosperity, and a bright future.

“If we want to lead the country towards progress, then we need to ensure political stability and continuation of policies,” the minister said while addressing the launching ceremony of PM’s Youth Development Initiatives under the vision of Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif.

Ahsan Iqbal said that youth form two-thirds of the country’s population hence there was a dire need to provide them with opportunities for education, skill development, and employment for a brighter future.

He said being the minister for planning it was his responsibility to lead them to a better future so that they could play a due role in the economic development of the country. Terming the youth as the future of Pakistan, the planning minister urged the young generation not to pay heed to anybody’s propaganda, adding that they should take steps to keep in view their goals and objectives. He said Pakistan was recognized in the world by its youth who have been studying in top educational institutions across the world.

The mister underlined the need for providing sports facilities to young people saying as many as 250 mini-sports complexes would be established in the country to help them harness their talent.

He said under the US-Pakistan Knowledge Corridor Project thousands of Pakistani students would go to top institutions in America for Ph.D. on scholarships. The minister also announced the establishment of 21 sub-campuses of top universities in different districts of the country.

Meanwhile, the minister reminded that Pakistan was facing the scourge of terrorism in 2013 and no foreign investor was ready to invest. However, when the PML government took over, it worked on three Es (Energy, Economy, Education) and rid the country of power shortage and consequently the country was able to stand on its own feet. He said his government had added 11-megawatt of electricity to the national grid system in 2018 and also rid the country of the menace of terrorism. In addition, it also introduced many successful projects under China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

The situation, he added, was so encouraging that even United Kingdom and the United States were seeking investment opportunities for their companies in CPEC. The minister lamented that the journey of progress was intentionally halted in 2018 when one person was being taught how to run the country. He said the situation was so grim that in 2022 the finance ministry announced that there were no funds available for the third quarter. Ahsan Iqbal reiterated his commitment on the 75th birth anniversary of the country to lead the country towards development and include it in top economies. He said there was no dearth of resources however there was a need to ensure stability in politics and policies. He also highlighted the importance of ending polarization, adding, nobody should be allowed to impose his/her ideas on others.He was of the view that only undivided leadership could lead the country towards a better future and questioned that ‘change’ does not mean spreading hatred in the society rather it means doing something positive.