Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi on Tuesday directed the Water Resource Division to plan water storage projects on fast-track while reiterating commitment of the government to end loadshedding of electricity and strive for a bright future of Pakistan.
Chairing a meeting on energy sector here at the PM Office, he said that there was no room for non-optimal solution in the energy framework. The prime minister also directed the Power and Petroleum Divisions to formulate roadmap to reduce usage of thermal power sources and asked them to focus on natural gas and domestic coal for energy production.
“Our government is striving to achieve a balanced mix for the country’s energy requirements. Maximum utilization of the Thar coal reserves should be ensured to provide affordable energy for consumers,” he said. The meeting was attended by State Minister for Power Abid Sher Ali, State Minister for Petroleum Jam Kamal and senior officials.
The Power Division and the Petroleum Division secretaries briefed the prime minister on energy sector projects and load management plan. Elaborating the rationale of distribution of work among the ministries, Prime Minister Abbasi said that water security was an important concern for the government and people.
WATER RESOURCES MINISTRY: He said that a dedicated ministry for water resources was required to handle these issues and to cater for improved management of water resources, a separate ministry was essential. Regarding the creation of the new Ministry of Energy, the prime minister stated that it was necessary to remove firewall between the Petroleum and Power sectors which were otherwise linked for a common objective of energy security in the country.
KASHMIR ISSUE: Talking to Azad Jammu Kashmir President Masood Khan, who called on him at the PM Office, Prime Minister Abbasi said that the international community should play its due role in asking India to immediately end human rights violations in the Indian-held Kashmir (IHK).
He reiterated Pakistan’s resolve to extend moral, political and diplomatic support to the just struggle of Kashmiri people for their right to self-determination. Matters of political significance and ongoing development initiatives in Azad Kashmir were discussed during the meeting.
President Masood apprised Prime Minister Abbasi of his recent foreign visits wherein he highlighted the grave human rights violations by Indian forces in the disputed state. He briefed the prime minister about his interaction with the European lawmakers.
Abbasi appreciated the role of the Kashmiri president and said that India could not resolve the Kashmir issue by the state terrorism being practiced by its forces that were silencing the voices of the innocent and unarmed civilians who were demanding freedom and the right to self-determination.