Prime Minister Imran Khan on Tuesday announced the government’s decision of a 15% increase in the salaries of Frontier Corps and Rangers personnel during his visit.
“I pay tribute to the heroes who neutralized the terrorists. I was told that the terrorists were going towards the families. I want to give a message to our army that the entire nation is behind you,” he said while addressing army troops in the Nushki area of Balochistan.
PM Imran, who is on a day-long visit to the region, spoke to soldiers who repulsed a coordinated terrorist attack on security bases in Panjgur and Nuski last week.
On the incident, in which nine soldiers were martyred, he said that he found out about it while in China, where he was attending the opening ceremony of the Beijing Winter Olympics.
“I had decided there and then to come to Nushki upon my return to the country to tell the forces that the entire country is with them,” he said, adding that terrorists were not “indigenous but instead had foreign backing.”
On Balochistan prevailing situation, the premier said that “more money has been invested” in the province during the PTI-led government than any other government. “Fruits of that investment would be visible soon. We have collected record tax from the province,” he added.
PM Imran said that there was “record-breaking” inflation across the world and the incumbent government was trying to improve the country’s economic situation.
Earlier, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf reported that PM Imran had arrived in Quetta. Balochistan Chief Minister Mir Abdul Quddus Bizenjo had welcomed the premier upon his arrival in Quetta.**
The ruling party -- PTI -- official Twitter handle shared the development.
Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi and Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid are also accompanying the premier. PM Imran will also visit Nushki where he will be given an operational briefing, sources told Aaj News.
The premier is expected to meet Balochistan Chief Minister Mir Abdul Quddus Bizenjo and Governor Syed Zahoor Ahmed Agha. He will also preside over a meeting on security matters. He is likely to review the progress of the development package announced for the resource-rich but poverty-stricken province.
Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry, in a tweet, on Tuesday said the federal cabinet meeting has been postponed. "The COAS and the PM will spend the whole day with the security personnel," it read.
In related news, Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa reached Nushki, according to a statement issued by the Inter-Services Public Relations.
“COAS will spend a complete day with troops. COAS will be given a detailed update on the security situation in the area and operational preparedness of the formation to counter terrorist activities,” it read.
COAS Qamar would also meet troops who participated in repulsing a terrorist attack on February 2. Later, the COAS and the PM would be given a "comprehensive briefing" and would also interact with local tribal elders, the military’s media wing said.
On February 6, a suicide bomber was killed in an intelligence-based operation near Dial Road, Tank district of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. The operation was conducted on confirmed intelligence reports of the presence of banned Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan terrorists,” the military’s media wing had said in a statement.
The development had come a day after the ISPR shared an update that “a total of 20 terrorists were killed during operations in Panjgur and Nushki areas of Balochistan. The military completed the clearance operation in the areas on Saturday.