Hopes and Apprehensions: Seminar held to discuss Kashgar-Gawadar Corridor

Habibur Rehman 

Peshawar: An academic seminar on the topic of “Kashgar-Gawadar Corridor: Hopes and Apprehensions” was arranged jointly by the Pakistan studies department and Chitral Association for Education and Health (CAEH) on March 08, 2015, in Peshawar University’s regional campus. A large number of academicians, students and notables from Chitral participated in seminar.

Prof. Dr. Fakhrul Islam, chairman Pakistan Studies Dept. welcomed the participants and the strategic importance of Lawari in the perspective of Pak-China economic corridor cannot be ignored as Chitral is the gateway to Central Asian States. The geo-economic importance sometimes brings loss to the inhabitants just like a fruitful tree receives stoning from different sides. The geography of Chitral proved to be a bone of contention throughout the history. He said our Pakistani nation stood fast in severe attack of psychological warfare and repulsed the great war of its kind in history.

Explaining his vast experiences during the economic corridor field surveys of 1993,  Mr. Inayatullah Aseer, poet and prominent social worker of Chitral said the original survey is the most suitable and feasible both socially and economically for the tri-partite of China, Pakistan and Tajikistan. The highway linked between Hangu and Chitral via Lawari tunnel will open vistas of economic prosperity to the region.

Prof. Dr. Israruddin, ex-vice chancellor and chairman of geography dept termed Chitral as the junction point of great empires which connects north to the south and it is defense centre of gravity as elaborated by historians. Chitral, since the 8th century has never lost his strategic and geo-political importance and 21st century has highlighted it amongst its neighbors of China, India and Afghanistan viz a viz a trade route for Central Asia.

A famous Economist and thinker Prof Dr.Abdul Mateen, Ex-Vice Chancellor Peshawar University, who was the chief guest, delivered his key note address in a very eloquent and can did form based on thorough research. He was of the opinion that the war on terror unleashed in the Islamic world especially in the South Asia is actually the phenomenon of “New Imperialism” having a larger perspective of ideology, cultural invasion and economic exploitation to reshape the order of the world. He academically explained the challenges confronted to Pakistan and Muslim Ummah. He said that economic corridor plans between China and Pakistan will reshape the economic history of infrastructural development.

The Chief Guest explained that the American led corporate culture is designed to change our mindset according to their own civilization which is not acceptable for the Muslims. Even Western Nations themselves deny the imperialistic approach of the western states. Independent countries will never accept and should deny the hegemonic long term plans chalked out for the region. He highlighted the importance of Chitral to reshape the economical and strategic freedom of the region in the larger perspective of the Pak China economic corridor. He added that Pakistan will prosper in the coming years as a Giant Leader of the progress based on the approved values attached to the ideology of Islam.

The Chairman IR department landed the seminar under the leadership of the high level academicians bound to be successful in approaching Central Asia via Chitral through Pak-China corridor.

The Chairman of CAEH, Mr.Habib-ur-Rehman , who presided over the seminar delivered his concluding address stressing that sustainable progress can only be achieved by adhering to our religious and cultural values. Loving Chitralis can never ignore it as it is a part of our Quranic faith. Peace and progress are interconnected with values, long from the history of Arabian Peninsula to the corridor of Central Asia. Chitral will be a base camp for the economic and values revival for the Islamic Republic of Pakistan and for the Ummah. The immediate connection of Lawari with the Pak-China economic corridor will open the broad energy and mineral gains along with Central Asian market approaches. This academician’s seminar will prove a torch bearer for the policy makers of Federal and Provincial level, as the China has approved additional investment for inter connectivity of viable roads of Silk Route civilization. The politician should seize the opportunities leaving behind their “Dharna Politics”.

The speakers landed the role of CAEH and Pakistan Studies department for arranging the successful seminar.

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