ISLAMABAD: Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) Prime Minister Raja Farooq Haider has expressed the hope that the territory will be included in the National Finance Commission (NFC) Award as promised by the federal government.
Speaking on the floor of AJK Legislative Assembly on Saturday, Haider said Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had assured that AJK would be included in the NFC Award along with the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) and Gilgit-Baltistan, during a meeting of the Council of Common Interests last month.
The AJK PM said that former Sindh chief minister Qaim Ali Shah had deferred AJK’s demand for provision of drinking water of 614 cusecs from the Mangla Lake for the people of Mirpur, arguing that the status of AJK was different from the four provinces of the country.
“Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has promised to increase water usage charges to Rs1.10, and the matter is lying with the Water and Power Development Authority and the Finance Division of Pakistan,” he said, adding that Federal Minister Khawaja Asif had promised to resolve the matter very soon and a meeting was all set to take it up.
Haider urged the opposition parties, including the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf and the Pakistan Peoples Party, to support AJK inclusion in the NFC Award as the Centre and the governments in Punjab and Balochistan were already supporting the issue.
“We should cooperate on this matter for the betterment of our people regardless of our political differences,” said the AJK PM.