All tunnel users already

in 'emergency'


CHITRAL, 04 Nov 09.  Chitralis have taken exception to the term 'emergency usage' of tunnel in winters as

attributed to Governor NWFP.  According to press reports, the governor has said that the tunnel would be made available for usage in emergency cases once the road was closed.


Wg Cdr (r) Fardad Ali Shah said that he had suggested in the recent seminar chaired by the Federal Minister for Communications, that the tunnel should be made available for at least two to three hours daily for all travelers on first come first serve basis without any discrimination which was agreed to by him and the Chairman NHA. There was no mention of the term 'emergency' then he said.


 Now the phrase 'on emergency basis' is worrying as it gives discretionary powers to the NHA authorities there to decide who is in an emergency, which is a recipe for discord and discontent as experienced last year.  He said, as soon as the Lowari pass closes for traffic every Chitrali is in an emergency and there is no need to further qualify the word emergency. 


 He demanded that after necessary security checks, all passengers should be allowed to pass through the tunnel,  as any one travelling there is in an emergency and has not come for a picnic.  He said this point should be clarified well before the pass closes to avoid inconveniences at that time.   --(GH Farooqi)