People of Federally-Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) are about to get their long stand demand for equal rights and status like people of the rest of the country are enjoying as equal citizens as the incumbent federal government appears all determined to do the needful in this regard before stepping down on May 31, 2018, brushing aside all opposition from ruling party’s allies Maulana Fazlur Rahman and Mahmud Khan Achakzai. 

Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi has quite rightly described the merger of FATA with Khyber Pukhtoonkhwah province (KPK) as a revolutionary steps which will not only benefit the people of tribal belt but also further strengthen the country. 

According to the reports in the media, the prime minister said this while addressing the inauguration ceremony of 132 KV Grid Station in Tehsil Jamrud of Khyber Agency. This may appear to be small event for the status of the PM but every little development like this is important and welcome as such development activities reflect restoration of peace and stability in the most troubled and hit areas of Pakistan. 

He quite emphatically said though there different opinions on this subject but the ultimate decision is going to be taken keeping in the country’s interest as well as the aspirations of the people of FATA, consultation process is going on for the last three and half month almost on daily basis and the National Assembly and the Senate will take the decision in the interest of the people of the tribal areas. The process is long indeed involving financial and administrative measures. 

It is also good to note that the parliamentary leaders representing almost all opposition parties have also endorsed the federal government move regarding FATA merger with KPK and all these developments augur well for the people of tribal areas who are going to constitutionally become the equal citizens of Pakistan like rest of the people of the country. 

M.Z.RIFAT,  

Lahore, May 24.