CHITRAL: Hundreds of people from Muslims and Kailash community organized a peaceful protest rally in Ayun under the auspices of Muslim and Kailash Défence Council Ayun which was presided over by Saleh Nizam Advocate. Addressing the gathering, elders of Muslim and Kailash tribes including women councillors said that Kailash Valley is famous all over the world for its unique culture and natural beauty and the annual festivals of Kailash tribe are discussed all over the world which attract thousands of tourists from all over the world. But unfortunately if once a tourist travels on this narrow and dangerous road, he also advises his future generations not to go to Kailash valley again. They said the valley borders adjacent to Afghanistan’s Nuristan Province, a Taliban stronghold, and that terrorists from Afghanistan have come here several times in the past, killing many Kailash people and taking away hundreds of their livestock.
The speakers said that we are very disappointed from the National Highways Authority (NHA) and we urge the Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Bajwa to take notice of the importance of this road from a security point of view and build the road yourself. “A few years ago, a Greek engineer was abducted by the Taliban from the Kailasha era and his recovery could have been timely, but due to the lack of roads, our forces returned after travelling several hours by foot they added.. On this occasion, the Kailash women also expressed their grievances against the elected MNA and MPA from Chitral who come to our house during the voting, but now that our road is bad, they do not raise this issue in the assembly nor come to us to take part in the protest. They urged that they should to residing from assemblies’ membership.
Elders of the Kailash tribe warned that if work on the road did not begin immediately, they would be forced to boycott their annual religious festival, Chhoms, etc., and this time tourists would be barred from attending the festival.
The meeting also passed a unanimous resolution under which they said that Rs 4.60 billion had been sanctioned for the construction of this road in the previous government but due to unknown reasons work on this road has not started yet. The federal and provincial governments are urged to direct the NHA high ups to start work on this road immediately so as to alleviate the hardships of the locals as well as the tourists. DC Lower Chitral was urged to Immediately apply section 4 and ensure payment to the landowners as compensation whose land come in the opening of this road according to the existing norms. The northern and southern borders of the Kailash Valley which connect the Nuristan province of Afghanistan and in the past many times terrorists from there iintrusion in Kalash valley have caused loss of life and property to the people of Kailash. Now a days the situation in Afghanistan is once again uncertain and serious we demand construction of this road defence strategically point of view to Protect Pakistan from any evil. And Wazirzada Kailash, Special Assistant for Minority Affairs, to Chief Minister Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, should immediately start work on the construction of these roads.
The resolution also thanked the Prime Minister of Pakistan Imran Khan for chosen Wazirzada Kailash as a member of the Provincial Assembly on a minority seat from the Kailash tribe and giving him the portfolive as special assistant to the Chief Minister. It was demanded that Imran Khan should fulfill his promise made in June 2002 that he would visit Kailash after coming to power. He was asked to visit Kailash Valley as soon as possible and put ointment on our wounds so that Assess the poor condition of the roads.
Abdul Majeed Qureshi, Haji Muhammad Yusuf, Wajihuddin, Muhammad Asif, Kailash Khatun Councilor Anta Begum, Habib-ur-Rehman, Saifullah Kailash, Qari Khush Wali Khan and others spoke on the occasion. The meeting was attended by women from the Kailash tribe in particular, expressing solidarity with the Muslim community and demanding immediate widening and construction of the road on which the patient dies before reaching the hospital. A large number of people both from Muslim and Kalash community attended the meeting.