QUETTA: While the army chief gave a ‘gift to Balochistan’ in his second visit to the province within two weeks, the military cantonment in Quetta was attacked, leaving one person dead on Friday night.
Chief of Army Staff General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, while inaugurating Musakhail Mineral Development Project on Friday, said the Pakistan Army has no interest in developing such projects except that natural resources are utilised for the benefit of the local population.
Musakhail, one of the most backward districts on the Balochistan-Punjab border, has an estimated two to five million tons of coal deposits that could last 15 years. The amount of marble deposits is yet to be determined.
Besides government royalty, the military will be given Rs400 per ton for providing security to the field. Some 20 trucks (each carrying 30 to 35 tons of coal) will be transported to Punjab.
“The project is a gift for the people of Balochistan on the eve of Independence Day,” said General Kayani. “The army has no vested interest in developing and managing natural resource projects in Balochistan, but
wants to exploit the reserves for the benefit of residents and to provide them education, health and employment.”