ISLAMABAD - Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said on Wednesday that they would not allow militants to make Karachi hostage and expressed his commitment to weed out terrorism from the restive port city.
He was talking to Chief Minister Sindh Syed Qaim Ali Shah here.
The Prime Minister said that the ongoing operation would continue in Karachi till the elimination of last terrorist. The government wanted peace across the country, he said, and added that Karachi is the country’s economic capital and they would let a bunch of militants to play with the fate of the country. During the meeting, Qaim Ali Shah apprised the Premier about the targets so far achieved through the ongoing targeted-operation against militants.
The operation has entered the third phase, he said, adding that effective action was being taken against the terrorists. The chief minister said accomplices of terrorists killed in the operation were carrying out retaliatory attacks.
Shah said that law enforcement agencies had broken the back of terrorists and that operation would be successful. Earlier, chairing the meeting on Thar Coal project, the Premier said that Pakistan urgently needs to utilize the natural resources its been blessed with and this is among the top most priorities of the government.
The meeting was attended by Chief Minister Sindh Syed Qaim Ali Shah, Federal Minister for Information Senator Parvaiz Rashid, Federal Minister for Petroleum & Natural Resources Shahid Khaqan Abassi, Federal Minister for Planning Ahsan Iqbal, Sindh Provincial Minister for Population Welfare Syed Ali Mardan Shah, Sindh Provincial Minister for Women Development Ms. Rubina Saadat Qaimkhani, Sindh Provincial Minister for Zakat & Usher Dost Muhammad Rahimoon, Advisor to CM Sindh on Finance & Energy Murad Ali Shah and senior officers of the Federal and Sindh government.
The Prime Minister said that Thar Coal Project would usher in a new era of energy security for the country and prosperity for the people of Pakistan. It is heartening to know that this project is being carried out as Public - Private partnership project between Government of Sindh and M/s ENGRO Corporation, said the PM. “Interest of private sector to enter into partnership with the Government shows the confidence of the private sector on government policies,” said the PM.
Muhammad Nawaz Sharif said that the government considers Thar Coal development as a flagship project and considers it as a means to Energy Security for the country. The Government of Pakistan appreciates the efforts of Government of Sindh and its partners in making Thar mining and power project a success and assures Federal Government’s support in resolving the issues like early provision of transmission line and ancillary matters.
Earlier during the briefing, Prime Minister was apprised that Pakistan’s coal resource potential is estimated to be around 186 billion tons out of which 175 billion tons are found in Thar alone; one of the largest Lignite deposit in the world.
The project aims to develop a coalmine in Thar with the production capacity of 6.5 million ton per year and construct a 660 MW Power Plant, in the first Phase (by 2017) while in the second phase another 660 MW power plant will be in place by 2019. Total cost of the project including mining and power generation is USD 1.6 billion and it will be completed in 3.5 years. It was also disclosed that the price of the electricity will reduce with the passage of time. The PM was briefed that Thar has been divided into 12 blocks, out of which 4 blocks have been awarded to different investors.
Thar Coal resources have an estimated potential of generating more than 100,000 MW of electricity over a period of 300 years.