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Baloch Dissident Leader Opposes Construction of China-Pakistan Economic Corridor

The China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) the 51.5 billion dollar project aims to connect Xinjiang with Balochistan

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Gilgit. Wikimedia

Balochistan, Mar 15, 2017: The China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), the 51.5 billion dollar project which aims to connect Kashgar, in China’s western province of Xinjiang, with the port of Gwadar in the Pakistani province of Balochistan is being opposed by the “Khan of Kalat” – the Baloch dissident leader Mir Suleiman Ahmedzai.

He has asserted that there is no development value in this project and the locals would not be benefited. He has also welcomed India’s assistance in stopping this project.

Similarly, Munir Mengal, President of Baloch Voice Foundation said that the project is a “strategic design” to loot Balochistan’s resources and destroy their culture and identity, mentioned ANI report.

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All roads and pipelines crossing into China from Pakistan as part of the CPEC project will run through this mountainous region, and yet there are no plans for any special economic packages to support the people of Gilgit which is an ecologically delicate area.

The locals who would be affected have been demanding that the details of the project be shared with them, failing which they would consider the area as illegal.

The area of Gilgit-Baltistan is an area contested by India, as it has been occupied since 1947, when a British-supported military coup led to Pakistani occupation of the area.

– Prepared by Upama Bhattacharya. Twitter @Upama_myself

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First Hindu Temple Lays Foundation Stone in Abu Dhabi

The temple will be built in phases with all the pink stones and marble being transported from Rajasthan to the UAE capital, the Khaleej Times said

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abu dhabi, hindu temple
The temple is being built on 13.5 acres (55,000 square metres) of land gifted by Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Al Nahyan to the Indian community. Wikimedia

The historic foundation stone-laying ceremony of the first traditional Hindu temple in Abu Dhabi was performed on Saturday in the presence of officials from India and the United Arab Emirates as well as thousands of members of the community.

The ceremony was presided over by Mahant Swami Maharaj — the spiritual leader of BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha — the organisation building the temple, along with other priests. Indian Ambassador Navdeep Suri attended the event in the presence of over 2,500 Indians from the UAE and across the world, according to Gulf News.

Suri and BAPS Hindu Mandir committee head and community leader B.R. Shetty were among those who laid foundation stones. Some 50 priests from India were part of the ceremony, the Khaleej Times reported.

Crown Prince, abu dhabi, hindu temple
Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan. Wikimedia

UAE’s Minister of Climate Change Thani Al Zoyoudi and Ahmad Bilhoul Al Falasi, Minister of State for Higher Education and Advanced Sciences, were among the attendees.  The temple will be built in phases with all the pink stones and marble being transported from Rajasthan to the UAE capital, the Khaleej Times said.

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The stones of the temple will be hand-carved by artisans in India and then transported to Abu Dhabi. Once completed, this will be the first traditional Hindu stone temple in the Middle East.

The temple is being built on 13.5 acres (55,000 square metres) of land gifted by Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Al Nahyan to the Indian community. (IANS)