NWFP name: PML-N agrees on Afghania

Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) has agreed over the name of Afghania for NWFP.

Talking to a private TV channel, PML-N leader Pir Sabir Shah said that that ANP had proposed three names for the province that of Pakhtoonkhwa, Pakhtoonistan and Afghania.

He said that PML-N accepted the name of Afghani and now the ball is in ANP’s court, adding N-League cannot show flexibility anymore.

Meanwhile, the secret talks between ANP and Pakistan PML-N continued on Saturday over changing the name of NWFP at the residence of Opposition Leader, Chaudhary Nisar Ali Khan.

According to sources of PML-N, both parties in secret parleys are trying to reach consensus over the new name for NWFP and the party is trying to remove reservations of members Parliament of NWFP.

Sources further revealed that main leaders of both the parties are taking part in the talks and Chairman Parliamentary Committee on Reconciliation Reforms (PCRR) Raza Rabbani postponed the meeting of the committee till Wednesday on the request of PML-N and ANP.

Sources said that members Parliament hailing from Hazara and Abbotabad opined that the changing of name of the province to Pakhtoonkhwa would eliminate their identity and any name to be acceptable for all should be adopted.

Punjab Chief Minister, Mian Shahbaz Sharif while talking to media men here said that PML-N did not take any U-Turn on the issue of 18th Amendment

He said that PML-N is not backtracking from its principled stance, adding solution to be acceptable for all would be found.

Meanwhile, PML-Q has convened a high level meeting on Tuesday regarding changing the name of the province.

According to spokesperson of PML-Q, the reservations of people living in Hazara and Dera Ismail Khan should also be taken into account.

Information Secretary PML-N, Ahsan Iqbal while talking to a private TV channel has held the statement of a minister responsible for the entire situation.

He said that complications are not usual in the finalization of constitutional matters as deadlock had emerged several times in the preparation of the constitution of Pakistan.

Ahsan Iqbal said that the name of NWFP would be changed with the consensus of all parties.

ANP leader Senator Zahid Khan has expressed his optimism of positive response from Quaid PML-N, Mian Nawaz Sharif till Wednesday.

Talking to a private TV channel, Senator Zahid Khan said that Nawaz Sharif has positive attitude and is supporting the provincial autonomy.

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3 comments on “NWFP name: PML-N agrees on Afghania

  1. I never saw such an illogical and confused personality like Mian Nawaz Sharif. He even does not know what he is presenting and what his aims are? Definitely a person whose strings are pulled from some suspect able corner, does not think from his own mind as he just takes dictations and acts like a dummy, the same thing Mian Sahib is practicing. However to some extent he is quite cunning also, as PML-N has petty issue of vote bank in Hazara belt and it does not want to lose that vote bank by agreeing to Phuktunkhwa. This was the testing time for Mian Sahib,but he preferred his personal interests. One important phenomenon, that Pakistan witnessing since its birth is, that Punjab always considered itself superior and all other provinces were treated as step brothers. It is discretion of elective representative of province, what they chose best for them. By hindering NWFP, Mian Sahib simply proved that he is totally against provincial autonomy and wants hegemony of Punjab. This act of PML-N would do nothing except, driving country towards disintegration. Feel the difference, between PML-N’s strategy and PPP’s strategy of Pakistan Khappay.

  2. Changing name of NWFP: A political drama towards disintegration.
    For decades ANP used the issue of renaming the province as a political agenda, and now when they are in absolute power, they have no option, but to address the issue they once created. I am wondering how the changed name of the province will bring a favorable change in the life of those who are living in this province:
    • Will the intensity of bomb blasts decreases or the suicide bombers will stop exploding?
    • Will the masses get better health and education facilities within a clean environment to live?
    • Will there be no more load shedding of electricity, gas, sugar and ‘atta’?
    • Will the lawlessness and cases of kidnapping for ransom will decrease?
    If the answer to these questions is yes, then I am the first to swear that I will fight till death for this noble cause. However, if this is not the case, then what is the logic of making a bigger crisis out of this ill-advised and poorly perceived issue?
    If the ANP is successful in changing the name, what can be the consequences? To address this critical question, we have to accept the hard reality that Pashto is not the primary language of majority in Chitral, Kohistan (both Swat-Kohistan and Indus-Kohistan of Manshera), Abbottabad, Manshera, Haripur, Kohat, and Dera Ismail Khan. These will be the aggrieved districts, if the name is changed to Pashtoon-Khwaa or Paktoon-Khwaa or Afghania etc. Similarly, the majority in these districts will resist to varying degree against this unpopular decision. Once, the Pandora box is opened, then we should not forget that our hidden and apparent enemies will help the locals in these aggrieved districts to claim some autonomy, merge with others, stay independent or whatever. If the ANP is under the impression that they will control the future mob and resistance, they have an open choice now to test their muscles in FATA, even with the full support of Para Military and Armed Forces of Pakistan.
    The actual strengths of the NWFP are its unique resources like water, forests, natural gas and vast agricultural lands of the south. Regarding water resources of Pakistan, we have to admit that most of the water ways and water storages are more in the control of those potential aggrieved districts mentioned above. Once the resistance due to changed name is started, the control of water will be no more be in the hands of those, who are controlling the things now. Thus, if ANP by virtue of its stance as the local party working for the welfare of people of NWFP; will lose its strength of being custodians of water resources of Pakistan, then what will be their say in the national politics.
    Similarly, most of our productive and valuable forests and associated wildlife are in Chitral, Kohistan and Manshera. Again all these are the potential aggrieved districts. We cannot neither find the valuable Diar nor the globally recognized and most expensive trophy animal of the world – Markhor in Charsadda and its surrounding districts. These forested areas are also a great source of tourist revenues for NWFP. Most of the national and international tourists are interested in visiting Chitral, Swat Kohistan and Hill tracts of Hazara. Except for Lower Swat all the areas are again the potential aggrieved districts. We also have to take into consideration that whether any tourist will ever bother to visit lower Swat, when they are aware of the fact that Green Chowk, the business centre of lower Swat was the favorite site of certain hidden forces for hanging the beheaded bodies of the residents of Swat.
    Natural gas in Karak district is another great resource of the province. The Khattaks of this area are smart enough to understand that they will never be like the residents of Sui, who are still without gas, where as the gas of Sui is distributed from North to South and East to West corners of the country. The Khattaks are already agitating whenever they feel discriminated in matters related to gas. Moreover, ANP is present in papers once we cross the Kotal pass or the Kohat tunnel. So, leaders of ANP should stop daydreaming that they will ever negotiate on the basis of the natural gas resources of Southern NWFP.
    Another big resource of the NWFP is its vast potential agricultural lands of Karak, Lakki Marwat and Dera Ismail Khan. In the past, these areas were kept intentionally backward by the political forces of NWFP, so that the dominance of Charsadda and its surroundings should stay intact. However, who so ever is a regular visitor of these areas for last few decades would have noticed that now these areas are turning ‘green’. Thanks to the Chasma Right Bank Canal, as it improved the water table in the southern districts of NWFP. Now with the cheaper but technologically improved water pumps (tube wells), the virgin lands of these southern districts are turning into more productive agricultural lands. Again, the masses of these districts have no sympathizes with ANP, their leaders and their political agendas. They still remember the words of the then leader of ANP, Abdul Wali Khan, who during the cold war era, declared the people of these districts as the potential “labour class” of independent Pakhtoonistan.
    FATA always enjoyed the independent status, so, if ANP leaders will try to merge the tribal agencies with their Paktoon-Khwaa or Afghania, they will only face resistance. Same will be the case of the PATA, as they will definitely keep their separate identity and will be more comfortable with FATA, as against some other alternative arrangements.
    When ANP and their Paktoon-Khwaa or Afghania, will be without the water resources, forests, natural gas and vast agricultural lands, on what basis will they take part in the national or local politics? Their remaining strongholds of Charsadda, Mardan and Nowshera will produce nothing except a few ‘Khans’ and lot of their enemies.
    If we as Pakistanis want our separate identity, it is high time that we come together, join hands against our hidden and apparent enemies and talk about integration. For that to happen, we have to forget our differences and political agendas and it is an excellent opportunity for ANP in NWFP to come with the suggestion that we will definitely change the name of our province, but the name of that province will be “Amnistan” – a place of ‘Amn’ or in other words ‘a place of peace, serenity and tranquility’. First, they will swear and promise that this province will never be a battle field for others to fight their war over here, and then we will promise that we will never allow anyone to use our lands as battle fields for others. If such words will come from the souls and bodies of all of us, our future is bright, InshaAllah.
    Seema Saeed

  3. although now selected name is khyber pakhtoonkahawa, but PML-N failed to represent all ethnic groups of NWFP. khyber do not represent identity of any ethnic group and pakhtoonkhawa is clearly only for pakhtoons who speak pushto. where is identity of Hazara? hazara people are 2% of Pakistan’s popuplation then why they are neglected. Pakhtoon people have lot of prejudices with hazara people. they do not give them equal employment opportunities. in universities pushto speaking people create lots of problems for hazara students. they create problems in various steps of researches in universities. they willfully involve hazara students in evil acts. hazara people face lot of difficulties by pakhtoon and now pakhtoon got the name of whole province according to their identity. PML-N lose all votes from hazara.

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