PESHAWAR, July 1: Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Minister for Information and Culture
Mian Iftikhar Hussain has termed the provincial autonomy granted under the 18th
Constitutional Amendment a silent revolution.

Addressing a function organised here at Nishtar Hall on Friday in connection
with the `Provincial Autonomy Day`, he said that it was the dream of our leaders
Bacha Khan and Rehbar-i-Tehrik, Khan Abdul Wali Khan that had come true under
the leadership of Asfandyar Wali Khan.

Others who addressed the function included ANP central vice-president Senator
Haji Mohammad Adeel, Vice president MNA Bushra Gohar, provincial president
Senator Afrasiab Khattak, Federal Minister for Railways Haji Ghulam Ahmad Bilour,
Senior Minister Bashir Ahmad Bilour, provincial general secretary Tajuddin Khan,
district president Mian Mushtaq and city president Malik Mustafa.


Mian Iftikhar said that July 1 was a very important and historic day on which
decades` long struggle of ANP leadership paid off in the shape of provincial
autonomy. He said that July 1 would be remembered as the holy day for the
political forces who had struggled for the provincial autonomy.

He paid tributes to President Asif Ali Zardari, Prime Minister Yousuf Raza
Gilani, Senator Raza Rabbani and his whole team for accomplishment of this
remarkable achievement. He said that the struggle and sacrifices of our party
for provincial autonomy were not hidden from anyone, adding that their
leadership had faced the hardships of prison in this regard and they had lost
their property and their children were deprived of education. This, he said, was
the reason that the day had special importance for them.

Mian Iftikhar, who is also the official spokesman of the provincial government,
said that the passage of 18th Amendment and its implementation was a big
challenge.

He said that from today the environment of lack of confidence between federation
and provinces has removed for ever and Pakistan has emerged as strong country on
the map of the world. He said that the resolution of the problems of the people
is now the responsibility of the provinces.

However, he said that the provincial autonomy is initial stage and feared that
in initial stage they can face some problems. But, he was confident in coming
days the people will take benefit of the achievement.

Senior vice-president of ANP Senator Haji Mohammad Adeel while speaking on the
occasion said that corruption was rampant in the country, including Khyber
Pakhtunkhwa.

“No one can get a job on merit in the country,” he said. Corruption was in every
department of the country including army and judiciary, he said, adding that
even if it was curbed only by 10 per cent, Rs300 billion could be saved in the
country and Rs16 billion in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

Other speakers said that with the provincial autonomy, the province would be put
on the track of development and the fruitful result of the autonomy would
surface very soon. They said that their elders had taken the initiative for
Pakhtuns` rights which were achieved at last.

Now, the federal government couldn`t be blamed for the backwardness of the
provinces if they failed to develop, they said and added that if ANP was given
another chance for another term, KP would be more developed and prosperous than
Punjab.

They said that peace would be restored very soon in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Fata.
Talks would be held with those Taliban who accept writ of the government and
shun violence while those who refuse to do so would be dealt with an iron fist,
they said.