By: Zeeshan Nasir
In my recent visit to the federal capital of the country, I had an opportunity to meet different people from diverse parts of the country with varying prospects of ethnicity, background, culture and religion.
During my visit, I approached a person, hailing from Rawalpindi,to name some of the cities of Balochistan. To my surprise,he ended up naming only Quetta which is the capital of the province and Gwadar which couldn’t come into the spotlight if Gwadar Port weren’t constructed.
For some reasons, people in other parts of the country know very little about Balochistan. Part of the reason might be Balochistan’s slow development irrespective of being the economic hub of the country.
The current situation in the Province is the collective failure of the federal and provincial governments as they have hardly invested for the economic development of the province in general and its people in particular.
The lack of media coverage, on the other hand, shows a bleak picture as well. To take an example, when two gas cylinder explosions succumbed the lives of innocent school children in the Turbat city and the other one in Shapok, the news was barely displayed in the national news channels except VSH News whilst, the victims too weren’t administered financial aid by the government in that too defying situation.
However, the China Pakistan Economic Corridor not only in terms of economic and infrastructural development and progress, it may bring up for the people, but it dispensed the much-needed opportunity in the media space and airtime to reveal the situation here in Balochistan. Balochistan can never develop or be on the track of progress be it, hundreds of CPECs or industrial zones be set forth, until there isn’t the development of human capacity as infrastructural works can never develop regions rather it is the people that develop the benefit out of projects.
As far as, development is concerned, the people in Balochistan needs investment in the sector of education, health and so forth. There are only few universities in Balochistan, but the opportunities such as funds, exchange programs, stipend and other educational aids are hard to witness. This doesn’t show an affirmative picture provoking one to question whether the people who are handicapped mentally themselves can work for the progress of the province?
The question isn’t this that the province isn’t blessed with roads, tracks and infrastructure but one can find thousands of brilliant and intelligent minds not getting the opportunities to explore a lot more beyond their thoughts.