PESHAWAR - Expressing grave concern over prolonged ban on mining licences for exploration of mines in district Chitral, a Chinese investor has asked the Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf central leadership and chief minister Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to take notice of the alleged corruption of the ministry concerned.
While addressing a news conference here at the Peshawar Press Club, head of the Tuny-Pak Mineral Private Limited Jhon Fu Qiufeng alleged that Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Minister for Mineral Development Ziaulllah Afridi was creating hurdles in issuance of mining licence due to which they were thinking to shift investment from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to Balochistan. He informed that the Chinese investors have made huge investment by carrying out various projects in mines and mineral sectors in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
He, however, said that they could not further continue mining in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa because of licence problem created by the officials on the behest of Zia Afridi, who issued directives on July 23 last year and imposed ban on granting PL and ML reconnaissance and exploration licences on the pretext of formulating new mining policy.
According to rule, Jhon Fu said, it was mandatory to issue licences within two months but the company applications has been pending for last three-month and the department is following delaying tactics in issuance the licences to them.
In the press conference, besides others the company officials Wen Jie, Ma Anmin, Misses Luo Xiao Li, and Wang Ying, Frontier Mine Owner Association (FMOA) Khyber Pakhtunkhwa President Sherbandi Marwat and General Secretary Haji Abdul Jalil were also present.
Jhon Fu said that they conveyed reservations to Pakistan Tehrik-i-Insaf Chairman Imran Khan and also held meetings with the chief minister and former governor Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to appraise them about the current situation. Jhon Fu said that the chief minister asked his advisor Rifatullah to resolve the issue by meeting with Ziaullah Afridi but he refused to meet them and even threatened to cancel the previous lease.
Earlier, speaking on the occasion, Frontier Mine Owner Association President Sherbandi said that the department had completely banned the issuance of licences to mine owners on pretext of formulating new policies.
He further said that the government formed a special committee to look into the matter that cancelled about 80 per cent leases while cases were registered against legal mine owners and started harassing them instead of taking stern legal action against illegal lease holders.
Sherbandi said that due to reservations and concerns of Chinese investors, the Chinese government did not issue NOC to its investors to work in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, whereas allowing them only to make investment in rest parts of the country.
He demanded of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government to end political interference in the mines and minerals development department and allow the officials of the department concerned to work independently as per rules.