RESIGNED -OR – MADE TO RESIGN? Lt Gen R Asim Bajwa QUITS -Khalid Mansoor New Head of CPEC Authority

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Tazeen Akhtar / 03 Aug 2021

Lieutenant General (retired) Asim Saleem Bajwa has resigned from Chairman seat of  China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) Authority. Apparently everything is being presented as green and good but certainly behind the scene is the apprehensions of China regarding vast interests of Mr Bajwa in USA.

That is why the question raises ” He Resigned or Made to Resign “.

Mr. Bajwa was no more than a controversial person after the publication of a story by a reporter in exile few months ago. The journalist Ahmed Noorani broke the story of Mr. Bajwa’s family businesses in USA. This story affected Mr. Bajwa with two respects.

1- Where he got the huge money for setting up such businesses while he was just a government servant.?

2- When USA is against the CPEC and leaving no stone upturned to perturb this effort of China to get connected with the world, how a Chairman who have vast financial interests in USA can work  sincerely on a Chinese project.?

Work on CPEC was already going slow at Pakistani side when the story appeared and became viral. Mr. Bajwa tried his best to get rid of the damage this story done to him but failed. It was only when the Prime Minister Imran Khan accepted his explanation and allowed him to continue that he felt a sigh of relief. Both parties of so called one page miscalculated the the matter and tried to push the dirt under the carpet and carry on.

later, no major development was noticed at the construction of CPEC. Prime Minister inaugurated a special economic zone at Rashkai to shun the impression that CPEC has been put to back burner under the pressure of USA but it could not serve the purpose.

Latest, only two weeks ago, Chinese engineers were attacked at Dasu in Kohistan District of KPK. 9 died and many injured. The response from Pakistani authorities was observed as highly immature.

I was at Tashkent conference covering the event on 15 to 17 July. Here Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi did not meet Pakistani counterpart warmly that was only because of Dasu attack and non serious statements uttered by some Pakistani officials. Then Foreign Minister Qureshy was sent to Beijing to assure China of Pakistani commitment to arrest the culprits and provide fool proof security to Chinese workers. And after that, now Mr. Bajwa is no more the Chairman of CPEC Authority.

Mr. Khalid Mansoor has been appointed as the special assistant to the prime minister on CPEC Affairs. Mr. Bajwa has appreciated the abilities of Khalid Mansoor. He said that Khalid is fully equipped to take CPEC forward.

Mr Bajwa has said in a tweet “I bow my head before Allah Almighty for giving me an opportunity to raise and steer the important institution of CPEC Authority as one window for all CPEC projects, charting the future direction.”

“CPEC is a lifeline for Pakistan; it will transform us into a progressive and fully developed country”. Mr. Bajwa continued.

Federal Minister for Planning, Development, and Special Initiatives Asad Umar has hailed Mr. Bajwa’s services, what he said,  in moving CPEC forward and playing a vital role in broadening the project’s scope. He welcomed Mansoor to the team as SAPM for CPEC Affairs.

Khalid Mansoor is said to have vast corporate experience, with extensive work with Chinese companies, and his direct involvement in leading some of the biggest CPEC projects makes him an ideal person to lead the next phase of CPEC.

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