Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan had dismissed his favorite lieutenant-general Asim Salim Bajwa from his post as president of the CPEC to please China. Bajwa faced charges of serious corruption through the CPEC and for the benefit of his family members. Not only that, due to Bajwa’s corruption, Xi Jinping canceled his proposed visit to Pakistan in the last months of 2020. China was also irritated by the continued attacks against Chinese citizens working in the CPEC.
Pak PMO released a statement
According to Pakistani media, Imran’s government on Tuesday replaced Lieutenant Asim Bajwa and appointed Khalid Mansoor as head of the CPEC in order to speed up the completion of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) projects. The Pakistani prime minister’s office issued a statement saying that Khalid Mansoor has been appointed special assistant to the prime minister on the CPEC with immediate effect. Mansoor’s appointment will be honorary.
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Who is Khalid Mansoor?
Khalid Mansoor has over 40 years of experience in the Pakistani business world, particularly in the energy and petrochemicals sectors. Mansoor, who holds a chemical engineering degree, has also worked with international institutions such as the World Bank, IMF and Exim Bank of China. He recently joined the board of directors of Sindh Angro Coal Mining Company (SECMC). Mansoor was Managing Director of Hub Power Company Limited (Hubco) and Chairman of LaRaebe Energy Limited, a subsidiary of Habco.
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China was angry with Pakistan over CPEC
In recent years, there have been tensions in China and Pakistan over CPEC projects. The Pakistani media itself had reported that China had repeatedly expressed concern about the slow pace of construction of the CPEC. At the same time, continued attacks on Chinese citizens working at CPEC fueled China’s anger against Asim Salim Bajwa. A few days ago, terrorists attacked a bus in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and killed 9 Chinese engineers. In Balochistan, too, there are constant attacks against the Pakistani army and Chinese civilians.
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Bajwa committed a scam by becoming president of the CPEC
Asim Salim Bajwa was the first spokesperson for the Pakistani army and later retired, he was appointed president of the CPEC due to his proximity to China. Bajwa’s family established 99 businesses and 133 restaurants during and after his time in the military. According to the Fact Focus report, this economic empire of Bajwa and his family is spread across 4 countries. When the Fact Focus website made this big disclosure, their website was hacked for a while. However, it was corrected later.
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What is the CPEC project
China is building a road to connect its Xinjiang province to the Pakistani port of Gwadar as part of the CPEC project. This road is built as part of Xi Jinping’s ambitious Belt and Road initiative. In which sugar industries will also be located on the side of the road. Apart from that, projects like hydroelectric dam, railway line have also been included in this. The total cost of this project has been estimated at $ 60 billion, while experts believe it is set to increase.
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India registered a protest
India has always opposed the CPEC. The project crosses Pakistan-occupied Kashmir. A few days ago, India asked China to leave PoK and Gilgit Baltistan. India could also face a strategic threat through this project. Under the cover of this project, China and Pakistan are developing places of strategic importance.