QUETTA -  At least 202 militants, including 75 Ferraris from Afghanistan, yesterday laid down arms in a ceremony before Balochistan Chief Minister Nawab Sanaullah Khan Zehri at the CM Secretariat.

Addressing the ceremony, the chief minister termed it a turning point in the history of Balochistan as such a large number of militants joined the national mainstream circle. He extended heartfelt congratulations to them on behalf of the masses of Balochistan, the government and security forces.

The chief minister said, “It is a good omen that more than 200 Ferraris have surrendered and we welcome them.”

He clarified those sitting in Switzerland, Afghanistan or any other country that they could not achieve their nefarious designs through disseminating fear and terrorist activities in Balochistan and Pakistan.

He asked those on mountains in Balochistan to come back and join the national mainstream,” Nawab Zehri again extended an offer of peace.

The chief minister categorically reiterated that those sitting abroad would not be spared to continue playing with lives of innocent people on the pretext of liberty, adding the anti-state elements were using the people as fuel for their personal interests.

“Your decision of joining the national mainstream will leave an encouraging impact on law and order situation in Balochistan, opined Sanauallah Khan Zehri. He added compensation will be accorded to those renouncing anti-state pathway under the ‘Peaceful Balochistan Policy’.

The Balochistan civil-military leadership welcomes those giving up arms and entering the national mainstream, he said.

“Those misguiding youth on the pretext of liberty have devastated our entire generation,” regretted Nawab Sanaullah Khan Zehri, and warned these miscreants would not be allowed to continue this bloody pathway. He went on to say that some elements were killing people and hoodwinking them for personal gains.

The militants laying down arms belong to Jalawan, Dera Bugti, Merri and other areas.

Meanwhile, Commander Southern Command Lt. General Aamir Riaz, addressing the ceremony, said the Baloch Ferraris joining the national mainstream are most welcome, adding now it is the topmost responsibility of the state and the government to ensure security to their lives and quality education to their children.

The Southern Command commander noted the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) would usher in a new era of progress and prosperity in Pakistan and Balochistan, adding the Balochistan people, political parties and youth would rid the country of terrorism.

“We all will have to work with coexistence to make Pakistan an Islamic welfare state,” Lt-Gen Aamir Riaz urged the participants.

Those who attended the ceremony also included provincial ministers, MPAs, Chief Secretary Saifullah Chatta, spokesman for Balochistan government Anwarul Haq and other political and tribal elites of the province.

INP adds: An unprecedented number of Feraris laid down their arms before Balochistan Chief Minister Nawab Sanaullah Zehri and vowed to work for the integrity of the country and wellbeing of people of Balochistan.

A special ceremony was held at the Chief Minister House where 202 Feraris handed over their arms to the chief minister. The chief minister met each and every ferari and appreciated their decision. He congratulated them for joining the national mainstream and gave them cash compensation to enable them to start their life afresh. Small children presented bouquets and miniature national flags to the Feraris.

Southern Command Commander Lt-Gen Aamer Riaz, speaking on the occasion, said that Balochistan would benefit the most from CPEC. He said some organisations had misguided the innocent people to raise arms against the country and created an atmosphere of crisis.

The corps commander said some people were conspiring against the country with the backing of Indian Prime Minister Modi, but they would not succeed as people of Balochistan were well aware of their nefarious designs.

He congratulated those who laid down their arms and advised them to get their children educated so that they could earn an honourable living for their families.

It is worth mentioning here that on Sunday about 20 feraris laid down their arms in Dera Bugti.

They had been involved in terrorist activities in Dera Bugti, including damaging gas pipelines.