New province, old motives?

New province, old motives?

With the calls for a new province constantly being echoed, various questions are being raised regarding the motives, prudence and consensus behind this. Where most people seem to agree with the fact that smaller provinces may help bolster efficient administration, confusion starts at how these would be carved out.

For instance, in the case of the Seraiki province, will the geographical boundaries incorporate three divisions of southern Punjab or will the Seraiki-speaking parts of other provinces be included? Forming a consensus and strategies on this issue is far more important than rushing the process before the next polls.

Are the calls for the new province(s) simply led by political convenience and point scoring or could the government actually be sincere in encouraging the devolution of power and improving governance through this process?

If the Seraiki province is carved out, will the government next look at the Hazara belt and its plea for a separate province as well? Or does their interest lie only in the breaking down of Punjab?


Comments Guide: encourages its readers to share their views on our forums. We try to accommodate all users' comments but this is not always possible due to space and other constraints. Please our read our comments guidelines below for more information:

1. Please be aware that the views of our bloggers and commenters do not necessarily reflect's policies.

2. Though comments appear to have been published immediately after posting, they are actually forwarded to a moderation queue before publication.

3. Dawn reserves the right to remove or edit comments that are posted on this blog.

4. Language that is offensive to any race, religion, ethnicity, gender or nationality is not permitted.

5. Avoid posting comments in ALL CAPS. Commenters are also encouraged to avoid text contractions like 'u r.'

6. Do not cross-post comments across multiple blog entries.

7. Any comments posted to a blog entry should be relevant to the topic or discussion.

8. Do not spam the comment section.

69 Responses to “New province, old motives?”

  1. Ibrar Ahmad says:

    It seems that government only pursuing the foreign agenda of disintegrating Pakistan.They have already given their dates agenda of disintegration of our beloved homeland.Beware of enemy’s plan…..

  2. Awais says:

    The creation of new province will only strengthen the corrupt landlords of seraiki belt.our pm,foreign minister,zulifqar khosa (right hand of cm of punjab),governor are seraiki.they are saying that punjabi establishment is against them but they using bureaucracy like tissue paper to save their people.they are just making their people fool.punjab should be divided but not on linguistic basis.there are lot of non seraiki live in southern punjab.this division will create problems for them like punjabis are facing problems in balochistan and some years ago in sindh.

  3. Syed Shah says:

    In principle there is nothing wrong with smaller and more provinces. But some guidelines must be laid down that a Chief Minister will enjoy only so much of a protocal and no more than 2 cars ahead and 2 cars behind shall follow making an entourage of not more than five including CMs. People’s problems are likely to be addressed better. They will live in their own provinces as there will be more development and more jobs. I strongly favour more and small provinces. I would say there can easily be three provinces from Punjab, two from Sindh, five from Baluchistan. There is no harm in more provinces for people’s early prosperity.

  4. Tabesh Baloch says:

    Saraiki State (and not just the province) is the right of the Seraiki people. Historically, Bahawalpur was never part of Punjab or even Pakistan. It is about time that Punjabi people realize the fact that no other ethnic group want to be affiliated with them. Either give other Ethnic groups the autonomy or they will fight for the complete independence from Punjab. Similar mentality from Punjabi establishment caused the loss of Bangladesh and Balochistan is also on the verge of semi-independence.

    • WAJID kHAN says:

      Dear mr. Tabesh Baloch, you should be a Pakistani first and ethnic second. that is the problem with Pakistan.
      what is the common denominator not Sindhi, Balochi Punjabi or Pathan it is Pakistani.

      • m.mirza says:

        wajid khan,

        you have said it very up right and true, i would like to add couple of words, we do not need new provinces , what we need hard working peoples in islamabad , who will take care the needs of all pakistan not serve their personel interest,make pakistan and islamabad more stronger than before ,

        and ensure who ever comes to islamabad ( mna) works hard to improve the life of every pakistanani in a honest way.

        pakistan zindabad and god bless pakistan


    • Raja Farhat Abbas says:

      Tabesh Baloch,do you understand the word Punjabi,then kindly define a Punjabie,do you realise how many diffrent ethinic groups their are in in Punjab you will find a good few million Baloch,Pashtuns,Kashmiries,rajputs,jats,gujjars etc.Please educate youself in history,and stop trying to twist the facts,.

  5. javaid says:

    I think creating more provinces will ne benefit to state of Pakistan
    Lowering nationalism bersagli more provinces it should ne done to Alltel existing provinces not just punjab i think needs subdivision our pm and prisident can have same courage to say we need to more provincs from sindh i think not

  6. Martian says:

    Landlords and tribal leaders of Saraiki belt want to escape from the hold of urban and industrialized northern and central Punjab.

    • Zain ul Abidin says:

      it is not true. people want development, urbanization and industrialization. that ‘s why, they want to escape from hold of central and northern punjab. Does not it bother you, that in past 64 years, how southern punjab was left behind underdeveloped and non industrialized with respect to other parts of punjab. who is responsible for that?

  7. Syed says:

    Punjab is the best governed province among the five. The only reason for its division is because PPP and MQM cannot stand the PMLN. Insead of fixing their own ineptitude in governace of other provinces and the Center, they want to create a new one dreaming of ruling it. PPP/MQM are hell bent on destroying Sind/Karachi and Pakistan.

    Four parties are mainly responsible for the current situation of the country and they have been in power durig the at least the part of last forteen years. MQM, PPP, ANP, and PML-Q. Check it out and vote accordingly in the next elections.

  8. Cheebz says:

    Smaller province will acheive nothing but more corruption and greater debt. If texas (almost size 3/4 of pakistan size) can be run by one govt, then pakistan can run by one govt. this province making just increases inefficinencies and breaucrecy. There should be no province as it divides country into races which only causes more inter racial issues. This is all political motivation and more corruption. Has gilgit baltitan acheived wht they set out to do? There should be loacl govt based on cities and regions.

    • Feroz says:

      Small provinces will improve the administration. Look at India, when they can have so many states and still prosper why cant we ?

    • Zeeshan Shamsi says:

      The population of Texas is 25 Million people, not counting the illegals, which is another 5 million. Pakistan is a country of 180 Million people, so your comparison based on geographic area may not be relevant. It is not just about race, it is about under-developed areas that would get better attention if the administration was local and not remote. What is a province but an arbitrary line on the map?

    • Jamal says:

      Texas’s population is tiny compared to Pakistan, seriously, and they’re is a large majority. Punjab has 56% of the population of Pakistan living inside it’s current borders, and not all of those are Punjabi.

  9. Rehan says:

    Creating new provices is the only way to take care of the four existing provinces. When our family grow up, don’t we split the family by moving into new houses or do we rather stick to live in the same house ?

  10. Azhar Hussain says:

    No doubt smaller units will bring much need infrastructure improvement in other parts of Pakistan. But as always our visionless leaders are playing politics and playing with fire. Why do we have to reinvent the wheel? We already have divisions and districts, why not caste vote in the parliment, and do away with provinces and establish divisions as States. This way these States will have resonable land mass as well as population to sustain them. I appeal to our intellectuls and media to put unrelenting pressure on these leaders to move forward and do something good for the country and its beautiful people.

    • Jamal says:

      This is the best thought out solution to the current situation. In the long term as population grows I think we’ll need to go further, down to city states. We shouldn’t worry about fragmentation, at the end of the day Pakistan has the 4th largest army in the world, and it’s an all volunteer force, Pakistan is not going to break up just because the political units are made smaller.

    • NMA says:

      This is definately the way forward…. what is the point of provincial assemblies anyways…. all it does is employ the friends and families of our already corrupt politicians…..

      • Syed says:

        I think the Punjab govt. is different than others, it has done a great deal for the province from education to economy to transportation. Nobody has said one word about discrimination in the yellow cab or the laptop schemes.

        • Zain ul Abidin says:

          Truth is they got 51% majority in Punjab province, and only that enabled them to control 60% resources of Pakistan and blackmail the whole country. People of Southern Punjab do not require free laptops and yellow taxis, they want nondiscriminatory behavior and equal funding in development schemes, industrialization, universities and public Institutions

        • Syed Shah says:

          A government is not judged by small populist schemes. Yellow cab and laptop schemes or even that roti scheme are just vote catching schemes, no schemes that will change the lives of many people. A good policy affects people by millions not a few thousands. This is micro activity. A government is judged by the macro contribuion Sir. Where is the vision and where are the policies. So far the biggest policy statement made by Nawaz Sharif is to get Musharraf. His announced policy is revenge and vendetta Sir. Where is good governance? Are things moving faster or better in Lahore or outlying areas please? No. On the contrary.

          • Jamal says:

            Examples of good governance in Punjab, maybe you should visit the barrier town development in Lahore, it is magnificent. An example that benefits the whole country is the city of Faisalabad, it’s continuing growth, aided ably by the provincial government, the only thing holding it back from overtaking Lahore one day is the crippling power cuts!

        • Kaiser says:

          Syed punjab may be the “best” governed province. We are basically concerned about its influence on the federal state and that other provinces do not get their fair share of the resources. Balochistan as a perfect example of that. Are you saying that PML-N is not responsible for anything. Have you forgotten the desecration of the supreme court by Nawaz group?

          • Jamal says:

            Influence, as the opposition? As for Baluchistan there is no denying that Quetta is a Pathan city, with a clear Pathan majority, so maybe Quetta should become a federal province in it’s own right, as should Karachi which should have remained the capital, and never have been amalgamated with Interior Sindh.

  11. Sarah says:

    Interest of the government only lies in the breaking down of Punjab! No better governance motive behind the creation of new provinces!

  12. Syed Imran Ali says:

    first take care of four provinces then think about the 5th

    • Zain ul Abidin says:

      its not like we are expanding. Taking care of 4 provinces is difficult and causing suspicions and hatred among people. We want to create 5 out of four to do good governance.. on Facebook on Facebook