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PTI Criticizes Government for Excluding KP CM Gandapur from SIFC Meeting

The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) on Thursday criticized the government for allegedly excluding Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) Chief Minister Ali Amin Gandapur from an upcoming meeting of the Special Investment Facilitation Council (SIFC).

Established in June 2023, the SIFC aims to unite provincial and federal government representatives, as well as military officials, to drive economic revival and increase foreign direct investment (FDI). The council is managed by an apex committee that includes the prime minister, the chief of army staff, chief ministers, and other senior government officials.

During a SIFC meeting in March, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif praised the civil-military leadership for their collective efforts towards the country’s development. He emphasized the importance of provincial government support in successfully implementing macroeconomic agendas, a sentiment echoed by the presence of CM Gandapur at that meeting.

Today, PTI alleged via a post on X that the decision to exclude CM Gandapur from the forthcoming SIFC meeting was driven by “clear malice.” The party called the SIFC “unconstitutional and illegal,” accusing the government of attempting to conceal plans for further military control over KP’s resources. PTI referenced a controversial February decision by the caretaker KP government to lease 17 motels of the Pakistan Tourism Development Corporation to a military entity for 30 years, expressing fears of additional military encroachment.

PTI strongly condemned this alleged exclusion and demanded transparency regarding the SIFC’s activities and performance. The party insisted that the council’s operations be publicly disclosed to ensure accountability.

This controversy comes at a time when CM Gandapur is already in conflict with the current government. Last week, he announced an investigation into the financial and administrative actions of the caretaker government in KP. He criticized political parties that had supported the caretaker government’s delay of the February 8 elections, urging them to reconsider their actions. CM Gandapur pledged to continue fighting for KP’s rights, vowing to oppose Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif’s administration if the province’s rights were denied.

Additionally, CM Gandapur recently threatened KP Governor Faisal Karim Kundi with serious consequences if he did not cease political interference. He also warned of taking control of the entire Peshawar Electric Supply Company system if the issue of excessive and unannounced load shedding in the province was not resolved.

The PTI’s allegations and CM Gandapur’s defiant stance highlight the ongoing political tensions and the challenges facing the government in balancing provincial and federal interests.

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