PESHAWAR - Expressing concerns over suspension of peace talks, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Pervez Khattak has urged the federal government to immediately start peace negotiations with Taliban, as dialogue is the only way to restore durable peace in the country.

He expressed these views while addressing a function of the newly-elected District Bar Nowshera. The function was attended by Provincial Minister for Excise and Taxation Mian Jamshiduddin, MPA Idrees Khattak, Deputy Commissioner Zakaullah Khattak, DPO Rabnawaz Khan and large number of lawyers’ community. While Provincial President Insaf Lawyers’ Forum (ISF) Qazi Mohammad Anwar, President District Bar Association Ejaz Mohammad Advocate and General Secretary Haji Mohammad Riaz advocate also addressed the function.

The chief minister said that the continuous useless war is severely affecting our province. He said the protest of the PTI is not for overthrowing the federal government but for bringing reforms in the Election Commission aimed at abolishing chances of rigging in the polls.

He said that Accountability Commission (AC) Act has already been passed from the provincial assembly and process for the establishment of commission and appointment of officials was in progress. He said that in next 20 to 25 days an independent and autonomous commission would formally start work.

Pervez Khattak said that the PTI-led coalition government besides quality education would also promote technical education to make youth capable for finding the employment of their choice. He said that a technical university is being established at Azakhel, Nowshera, which will be first-ever technical university of the country.

He said that due to its good standard it instead of job seeker would be the job giver. Similarly, he said, the establishment of Air University will open the new doors of technical and higher education in the area.

He said the PTI government from its first day in office wanted resolution of problems through negotiations. He said we are facing economic problems while the issues of price hike and unemployment are also soaring and perturbing our people.

He said the Ehtesab Commission will conduct indiscriminate accountability of all and sundry even the chief minister will be answerable to it. He revealed that the provincial government has received several applications of corruption along with proofs but they were not handed over to the National Accountability Bureau (NAB), as how an Accountability Bureau, whose DG is posted in consultation between the Prime Minister and Leader of Opposition will conduct free accountability.

He said that was the reason that till today no clean and fair accountability was held and corruption increased with each passing day. He said that the accountability commission is being established under a specified procedure and there is no interference of the chief minister or any bureaucrat in it. Therefore, it will conduct across the board accountability.

The chief minister said that largest change is the reformation of system, saying situation in the province was deteriorated and corruption was at peak in past. Therefore, he said, the people in general and youth in particular gave a clear mandate to PTI to abolish the outdated system and put full stop to corruption, commission and injustices.

He said that soon after assuming the reign of power,  he introduced basic reforms and worked day and night for the restoration of institutions and elimination of corruption. He said today clear change is witnessed in this regard. He said that the government has also given legal cover to its reforms and record legislation has been made in the province and further is in the offing.

He said that they have given the date of April 30 for holding local bodies’ polls in the province but the verdict of Supreme regarding delimitations delayed it.

He said that they had passed an Act from provincial assembly and now the National Assembly will also pass an Act and then Election Commission will carry delimitations and elections will be held by November this year.

He said that they are making efforts for holding local bodies’ polls before the month of November. He said the provincial government wanted to hold the elections under biometric system to pave way for holding allegation-free fair and transparent polls.

Pervez Khattak said that his government has transferred all powers to gross root level and a provincial developmental budget of Rs30 billion to Rs35 billion will be spent through village councils and people will utilise funds on the basis of their will. He announced the acceptance of all demands made in the welcome address, which spread a wave of joy among the lawyers.

He said that the standard of development projects would be maintained at every cost and now instead of two-room and two-teacher, the primary schools will have six rooms and six teachers. He said that they under Tameer-e-School Programme are collecting donations for construction of 13,000 rooms, 9,000 boundary walls and 8,000 bathrooms in schools and in this connection they had received a donation of Rs30 million only in three hours of inauguration of this programme by PTI head Imran Khan.