Contrary to the tall claims of the centre and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) to accelerate development in the erstwhile Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), there is little progress in the merged areas. The shortage of funds is holding up the development projects that are necessary for the socio-economic uplift of the merged districts.

There are other reasons as well that are hampering the development process in the former tribal belt. However, the main reason that no substantial project has been completed is the lack of financial resources. Funds disbursal is key to securing any development anywhere, in general, and in the merged districts, in particular. If the government is serious in bringing the previously neglected FATA at par with the rest of the country, it must complete all the necessary uplift plans. Otherwise, moving on to the next stage of the merger will be impossible.

The government must take notice of the issues that are becoming obstacles in the development of erstwhile FATA. The officials must also prioritise the socio-economic uplift of the region. The centre and the KP government must sit together and remove all the bureaucratic hurdles that are marring the Tribal Decade Strategy (2020-30).

It is essential to note that building infrastructure is the first and fundamental requirement for putting a region on the path of prosperity. Therefore, all the infrastructural plans in the region must be carried out immediately. None of the initiated projects will not generate instant results. They will take time to reveal the positive impacts they are supposed to bring. Hence, the sooner these schemes are completed, the better. Otherwise, the gains made so far will inevitably be reversed.