Prime Minister, Shehbaz Sharif speaking on the occasion of inauguration of solarization process of tube wells in Balochistan: Photo provided by the CM Secretariat

Syed Ali Shah:

QUETTA: In a landmark initiative, Prime Minister Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif has unveiled a project to solarize nearly 28,000 agricultural tube wells in Balochistan. This groundbreaking effort, carried out by the federal government in partnership with the Balochistan government, aims to transition electric tube wells to solar power, guaranteeing a consistent and sustainable water supply for farmers.

The Prime Minister arrived in Quetta for a one-day visit, where he was welcomed by Chief Minister Balochistan and provincial ministers at the Quetta International Airport.

The 55 billion rupee project will be financed 70% by the federal government and 30% by the Balochistan government. Prime Minister Sharif has given the Balochistan Chief Minister a three-month deadline to complete the solarization process. Solar-powered tube wells will offer continuous water supply throughout the day, enhancing agricultural productivity and expanding arable land. This transformation will also resolve the long-standing issue of limited electricity availability, which had previously been restricted to just 2 to 6 hours per day despite significant federal subsidies.

During the signing ceremony in Quetta, Prime Minister Sharif underscored the environmental and economic benefits of solar energy. He reiterated the government’s commitment to expanding solar energy usage nationwide and affirmed the federal government’s support for Balochistan’s development in collaboration with the provincial government.

In addition to the solarization project, Prime Minister Sharif announced further initiatives, including substantial quotas for Balochistan students in vocational training programs in China and the establishment of Danish schools in the province, with plans to extend these schools to the divisional level.

Addressing Balochistan’s provincial cabinet, including Governor Sheikh Jafar Khan Mandukhel and Chief Minister Mir Sarfraz Bugti, Prime Minister Sharif assured the federal government’s dedication to tackling the province’s challenges. He called for collective efforts to alleviate deprivations and promote Balochistan’s growth and prosperity.

The solarization project represents a significant advancement towards sustainable agricultural practices and economic development in Balochistan, promising a brighter future for the province’s farmers and youth.

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Quetta Voice is an English Daily covering all unfolding political, economic and social issues relating to Balochistan, Pakistan's largest province in terms of area. QV's main focus is on stories related to education, promotion of quality education and publishing reports about out of school children in the province. QV has also a vigilant eye on health, climate change and other key sectors.