India Snubbed: Pak-China Initiate CPEC Project in Gilgit-Baltistan
Pakistan Prime Minister, Nawaz Sharif inaugurated the $44 million, 820-kilometre-long cable project stretching from Rawalpindi to Khunjerab in Gilgit-Baltistan, which will be completed by the Special Communication Organisation in two years.
The project, which will provide an alternate telecommunication route between Pakistan and China, will also bring 3G and 4G connectivity to the Gilgit region, Sharif said at the groundbreaking ceremony function in Gilgit.
Sharif also inaugurated the Gilgit-Baltistan CPEC patrolling police headquarters in Gilgit. The patrolling headquarters will serve a force comprising 300 personnel which will help regulate traffic along a 439 km stretch of the CPEC in the area. China has provided 25 vehicles for the patrolling force.
India has already expressed its objection to the proposed corridor as it will pass through Pakistan-administered Kashmir, a region which is disputed between the two south Asian neighbours.
The Pakistan premier also announced the establishment of a technical training institute in the region. “We will initially set aside Rs100 million for this project,” he said.
Sharif stressed the need for preparedness for a newer knowledge-based economy. “These development projects will help reduce extremism,” he said, pointing towards lack of employment as a driver of militancy.
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