Protestors demand shifting of Baghlan capital
PUL-I-KHUMRI (Pajhwok): Residents on Wednesday staged a protest demonstration, asking the government to shift the provincial capital from Pul-i-Khumri to Baghlan-i-Markazi.
Hundreds of protesters gathered in the district’s stadium and warned if the government did not consider their request, they would close the Baghlan-Kunduz highway.
Arbab Ghulam, one of the protestors, said Baghlan-i-Markazi was the provincial capital in the past and they wanted it to be restored. He added the government had promised shifting the capital many times.
“Baghlan-i-Markazi is also a better place for industry,” he argued, accusing the authorities of repeatedly breaching promises. Some 25 years back, during the administration of Najibullah, Pul-i-Khumri replaced Baghlan-i-Markazi as capital of Baghlan.
Mohammad Laiq, a local elder, told Pajhwok Afghan News the government had neglected the district’s development and security. “Our demand,” he said, “is the district’s development.”
Ferozuddin Aimaq, deputy head of the provincial council, said lack of security was a major challenge to residents of the district. Over the last 14 years, the government had built 36 department buildings in Pul-i-Khumri.
“But I don’t think the government has the capacity of shifting the capital,” the public representative believed.
Deputy Governor Abdul Qadeem Niazi said only the central government could take a decision on the issue, which the provincial administration was not empowered to deal with.
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