SAARC should work for strength­en­ing of democ­racy, stresses Raja

Par­lia­ment rep­re­sents will of peo­ple: PM

The Pak Banker - - Front Page -

IS­LAM­ABAD

Prime Min­is­ter Raja Pervez Ashraf has called upon the SAARC coun­tries to join hands for strength­en­ing of democ­racy in the re­gion.

Ad­dress­ing the SAARC par­lia­men­tar­i­ans at a lun­cheon in Is­lam­abad on Tues­day, the Prime Min­is­ter said the eigh­teenth‚ nine­teenth and twen­ti­eth amend­ments in the con­sti­tu­tion of Pak­istan have not only re­stored the orig­i­nal struc­ture but also ad­dressed the is­sues of au­ton­omy of prov­inces by grant­ing them more ad­min­is­tra­tive‚ le­gal and fi­nan­cial pow­ers.

He said that Par­lia­ment rep­re­sents the will and as­pi­ra­tions of the peo­ple. Raja Pervez Ashraf said Par­lia­ment’s role is crit­i­cal for any democ­racy to take deep roots and for­mu­late poli­cies for peo­ple’s wel­fare. He said the SAARC coun­tries should de­velop a com­pre­hen­sive and holis­tic strat­egy to ad­dress the chal­lenges faced by the re­gion.

The Prime Min­is­ter said at a time when re­gional eco­nomic and po­lit­i­cal group­ings are fast emerg­ing on the map of the world SAARC can il­laf­ford to lag be­hind. He said Food se­cu­rity has be­come a fun­da­men­tal com­po­nent of na­tional se­cu­rity par­a­digm.

The Prime Min­is­ter said the re­gional coun­tries should share in­for­ma­tion and ex­per­tise in agri­cul­tural sec­tor‚ tech­nol­ogy trans­fer and ef­fi­cient ir­ri­ga­tion sys­tem to ef­fec­tively pre­empt any food crises in fu­ture.

The Prime Min­is­ter said Pak­istan is firmly com­mit­ted to the prin­ci­ples of SAARC and at­taches great im­por­tance to its ideals.

“It is time for us to lever­age our po­ten­tial to over­come these chal­lenges,” the Prime Min­is­ter said. He said Pak­istan was firmly com­mit­ted to the prin­ci­ples of SAARC and at­taches great im­por­tance to its ideals and pro­cesses.

He said Pak­istan strongly be­lieves that re­gional co­op­er­a­tion was an im­por­tant engine of pros­per­ity for the peo­ple of the re­gion and called for fo­cussing on in­creas­ing re­gional trade. “We are com­mit­ted to go an ex­tra mile to make SAARC an ef­fec­tive and pro­duc­tive or­ga­ni­za­tion that is ben­e­fi­cial to all South Asian cit­i­zens.”

The Prime Min­is­ter in this re­gard said the peo­ple need to be made part­ners in de­vel­op­ment and their wel­fare be the fo­cus of pub­lic pol­icy.

Prime Min­is­ter Raja Pervez Ashraf said Pak­istan en­vi­sions SAARC as a thriv­ing or­ga­ni­za­tion, pro­mot­ing not only re­gional de­vel­op­ment but ad­vanc­ing the global agenda for peace and pros­per­ity. He said one of the ob­jec­tives of SAARC was to pro­mote the wel­fare of the peo­ples of South Asia and im­prove their qual­ity of life.

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