PESHAWAR – Qaumi Watan Party (QWP) Chairman Aftab Sherpao on Saturday said that his party would continue making efforts to ensure rights to the Pakhtuns irrespective of their political affiliations.

“All the Pakhtuns living in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Fata, Balochistan and other parts of the country are equal to us and we make allout efforts to remove the growing sense of deprivation among them,” he said while talking to a delegation of prominent tribal elders and youth hailing from Darra Adamkhel.

The elders, including Malik Zareen Shah, Malik Sheraz Khan, Malik Ezzat Khan, Malik Raham Gul, Malik Obaidullah and others announced joining the QWP on the occasion. They were previously associated with the Awami National Party and Jamaat-e-Islami.

Aftab Sherpao asked the government to set up a trust to help all the families affected by militancy. “The government should establish the trust to provide education and health facilities to children of the displaced people as they have been going through tough time and desperately need help,” he maintained.

To the demands of the tribal elders about the provision of health and education facilities, he said that the QWP’s manifesto, which would soon be made public, also called for the provision of all the amenities of life to the general public and they would spare no effort to materialise it if voted to power.

The QWP leader said that over 800 schools were destroyed in acts of subversion, but no step has been taken to reconstruct them. He said the government should have announced a special package to revive the damaged infrastructure. He said that the Pakhtuns in general and the tribal people in particular had been dubbed as terrorists, which was unfair. He said his party was striving to give the Pakhtuns their due rights.

“We want to see peace in Fata and the rest of the country because it is the prerequisite for undertaking uplift activities and bringing the tribal areas into the mainstream of life,” he said, adding the QWP had a comprehensive plan to establish peace. 

Sherpao said it was up to the tribal people to make a decision about the future status of Fata. “We will support whatever decision the tribal people make about their future whether they want a separate province or are willing to absorbe Fata into KP,” he maintained.