CHITRAL: With the advent of September along with widespread rains in the districts, Chitral is seeing off summers with a difference this year. The summer in Chitral has almost been a mosquito free summer unlike other years when ‘Kugunu’ (mosquitoes) and their junior partners ‘Shugunu’ and ‘Shunuku’ were hardly seen, at least in Chitral town. The reason could be any from the weird weather phenomenon to maybe corona restrictions indirectly inhibiting the production of mosquitoes, or whatever but the fact is that it was a relief for many to not hear the annoying buzz of mosquitoes while trying to get to sleep at night, or get up with mosquito bites all over the face and bare hands.
Chitral News & Views
CHITRAL: The district administration on Monday razed a newly-constructed building of a multi-storey hotel in Krakal village of Bumburate valley as part of its drive against illegal and unapproved buildings.
Lower Chitral deputy commissioner Naveed Ahmed told Dawn that the huge building had been erected opposite to the ‘bashaleni’ (the home of Kalash women where they stay during menstruation), overseeing the latter’s inner portion, thus infringing on their privacy and seclusion.
He said the Kalash people had been expressing strong reservations since the construction had started. He said he had ordered the building’s demolition after fulfilling all the formalities and giving ample time to the owner.
Mr Ahmed said to preserve the natural beauty and cultural heritage of the world-fame Kalash people, the buildings of modern designs were being discouraged by the government.
He said owners of scores of other buildings in the valley had also been served with notices.
Yaqub Khan, a local resident, said the hotel was owned by a person hailing from Punjab who had married a woman from the Krakal village and had taken the piece of land on lease for 30 years.
FLASH FLOODS: Flash floods hit a number of villages in southern belt of Chitral, including the Drosh town, and damaged the infrastructure of road and water supply and headwork of irrigation channels on Sunday night.
The road to Damil village bordering Upper Dir had been washed away, with flood water inundating crops of maize and rice.
The flash flood in Drosh stream left the people without drinking water as pipes of water supply schemes were swept away.
Chitral River was in high flood due to rains and melting of glaciers in Upper Chitral, and causing erosion of agricultural land in different villages in the upstream, including Reshun, Shogram, Junali Koch, Parkusap, Samagol, Werkup and Terich. .. Source
While in London, I went to visit, one of the exhibition entitled: “Introduction to Islam”. This exhibition was attended by a Da’ee, who was already living there. He told us the following story :
A Scottish man came and wandered around the exhibition. He greeted me and we spoke for a while. I then asked him if there was anything he wanted to know about Islam.
He said: ‘no, no thanks. I don’t like the theory that we are used to hearing. You see, I have lived among you in several Arab ‘Muslim’ countries for many years, and I read a lot about Islam; I know a great deal about Islam!
So I asked him: “what do you know about Islam?”
He said: “Islam is a beautiful, fascinating religion that organises relationships with others, Muslim or non-muslim alike. Islam is a religion that teaches you how to worship your lord in a clear manner, how to treat your parents, your wife, your children, your neighbours, and the community in general, etc. UNFORTUNATELY your actions do the exact opposite of what you claim, because:
@you swear falsely;
@you don’t respect time;
@you slander each other;
@ you are chaotic, you don’t like organisation;
@ you belittle each other;
@ you are racist;
@ you wrongly take each others wealth;
@ you are not concerned with cleanliness;
@ you respect the rich and humiliate the poor;
@you are envious of each other;
@you take laws into your hands hiding under religion;
@you slander one another;
@you are good in concocting stories to slander whoever you hate and vice versa;
@ show me one of you here who will not rejoice at the travail of the other;
@majority of you don’t even understand the religion you claim to belong;
@those you blindly follow in your sect you take them as next to God and those of other sects are seen as worse than satan;
@ the laws in your lands are applicable to some, but not to others!
Then he said: “oh I’m sorry, you look disturbed? ”
I said to him: “take what is in the book, forget the conduct of the individuals”.
He shook his head and said:
“You’re wasting your time and money by running these exhibitions, for perhaps we know you better than you know yourselves!! When most of you don’t go by the books, of what use are the books to me?
“Go back to your magnificent book (Holy Quran) implement the principles and manners contained therein, and when you perfect the implementation, you will find the nations entering your religion in droves, without the need for exhibitions like this. We are people who are more interested in visible results, in reality as opposed to what is read in a book.”
I became dumb founded!!! A non Muslim has said it all in just a few words!!!
Share it to all. MUSLIMS
May we become the Islam we preach and that is in the Qur’an and Sunnah.
CHITRAL: Three Airbus passenger planes laden with tourists have landed at Skardu airport as a first time.
The government’s boost to tourism coupled with the PIA starting direct flights from Karachi to Skardu has brought about the change. Domestic tourism has taken off with after burners after the Covid lockdown. The KP govt has issued figures which are encouraging. According to them, 627995 tourists visited the province of which 356400 reached Swat, 65350 visited Mansehra, 9800 tourists reached lower Chitral and 3460 visited tourist points in Lower Dir.
Although Chitral has the unique advantage of being home to the ancient Kalash tribe in three beautiful valleys and it has the highest polo ground hosting the ancient free style game of polo, beside having a hospitable people, but visitors to Chitral are often turned off due to the pathetic condition of roads and the holding up of of travelers at the Lowari tunnel without any reason. Chitral also needs more organised tourist facilities so that domestic tourists choose it as as their first priority when deciding to take a tour of Pakistan. .. Courtesy: seepakistantours.com
CHITRAL: The Kalash community wants a law/agreement between the two communities that makes it mandatory for a Kalash girl to get the consent of her parents before she decides to marry a muslim boy. The community is wary of increasing number of young underage Kalash girls getting tied in wedlock with Muslim partners after relinquishing their faith and adopting their would be husband’s religion, without the consent of their parents. The demand was put forward by the Kalash elders during the visit of Provincial ministers for Labour, Mineral development, Prisons and CM’s advisor on minority affairs, who had come to the valley to witness the Kalash festival ‘Uchal’. .. Muhkamuddin, Chitral 23 Aug 2020
CHITRAL: The N-14 which is running all the way from Nowshehra district to Chitral via Dir.It is operated and maintained by the NHA. Before the Lawari tunnel project the people of Chitral were at the mercy of the weather for most part of the year.This tunnel nowadays provides us all weather time access to the rest of the country.Due to the strategic position of Chitral this route has all the potentials to be the future energy corridor of the region.It can uplift the economy of Pakistan. It offers the most shortest and safest access to the rich oil and gas minerals CARs sates if there will be stability and peace in Afghanistan because the corridor of Wakhan is in there Territory which connects Chitral to the Tajik capital.Nowadays the Chakdara Chitral expressway is the talk of the town.All the mainstream opposition parties are trying to exploit this issue to gain some political mileage. The federal minister for communication Murad Saeed catagorically admitted in the NA in the presence of MHA Chitral that this project will be initiated next year in march 2021.Similarly the KP CM also announced that Chitral Chakdara expressway will be inaugurated by the prime minister Imran Khan.
Since ages despite the demand of the people of Chitral this N-14 Chitral portion was the most neglected route of Pakistan. There was lack of ownership and keen interest on the part of NHA to provide better road facilities to the public.The people of the area and the tourists were subjected to NHA torture for a very long period of time.
Nowadays with no surprise NHA has started a large scale repair work starting from the TMO chowk Jughour Chitral.After the announcement of Chakdara Chitral expressway it is very meaningful and there is a big question mark on the part of NHA decision making.What they will do with this large scale repairment work when the expressway way will be started? Once again they will uproot this work wasting millions of rupees??Similarly i have some reservations with the approach and procedure of this repair work.During execution of plans there should be proper planning and working. Each locality has its own dynamics and requirements which should we meet to ensure proper spending of public money without wasting it.As a local i can tell there is a system of culvert( total 6 culverts for irrigation purpose) starting from Denin road to the judicial complex).
Without changing and altering the faulty designs of these culverts this repair work shall not last very long and it will be deteriorated very soon as a result wastage of public money. Similarly the major culvert on the Denin road is almost blocked due to the debris of flash floods for the last 4 years.During each fall due to the fallen leaves these Culverts are completely blocked. Due to water retention the water spills over the chamber sides as a resulting flooding and accumulating on the main road in form of ponds. Secondly the repair work is unsatisfactory because they are applying and spreading the crush stone and the khakka on the old main hard road.They should either starch or uproot the old top layer to ensure firm and strong base as a result it will long last.I hope someone sitting on the due responsible positions will take notices of my these suggestions and reservation t0 ensure proper utilization of public money. .. Sarwar Kamal Jughour, Chitral 22 Aug
CHITRAL: The residents of Chitral have complained against phenomenal increase in the number of children and women beggars in the district.
They said that certain families from Sheshi Koh and other southern areas of the district settled in the city of Chitral and Drosh and started deriving their sustenance from beggary for which they used their women and children.
They also demanded of the government to implement KP Vagrancy Restraint Act, 2020 enacted in January to prevent the obnoxious practice leading to myriad social issues and restlessness.
Bashir Hussain Azad, a shopkeeper in Shahi Bazaar, said that beggars from down country had started arriving in the city earlier in the year but they were sent back by the police and district administration on the demand of the people. “However, the local beggars are still here,” he added.
He said previoudly beggars from Punjab and other areas used to come to Chitral in the summer season, but now locals were also adopting it as a profession.
Abdul Hafeez, another shopkeeper at Polo Ground Chowk, said that beggary through children and women was getting more and more prevalence in the area that went unchecked and unbridled although beggary was a social taboo till the recent past and it was practiced by the non-locals in the summer season.
He said that he often observed people dropping children at certain thoroughfares in the morning time and collecting them in the evening time which meant that beggary was being promoted in Chitral.
He feared that young women seeking alms from the people at public places was likely to create social problems.
Chitral Lower Deputy Commissioner Naveed Ahmed, when contacted, said that social welfare was the department concerned to implement the law enacted by the provincial assembly while the district administration would extend all-out support and help to the steering committee, mentioned in the Act.
The district officer of social welfare could not be contacted despite repeated efforts to know his version.
SUICIDE: Two persons including a married woman and a teenage boy committed suicide by jumping into the river here the other day.
Police told Dawn that a 16-year-old boy jumped into the river in Koghuzi village.
The second incident took place in Zaini village of Upper Chitral where a woman, mother of a five-month-old child, believed to have jumped into the river in Warijun.
Police said she had gone missing three days ago while her shoes were found at the riverbank implying that she jumped into the river as some villagers had seen her going towards the river. .. Source
CHITRAL: Hundreds of people of Mastuj Tehsil of Upper Chitral District under the leadership of Prof. Dr. Muhammad Ismail Wali started construction of 30 km road of Mastuj on their self help basis. . Earlier that , a briefing ceremony was held near Mastuja Bridge in which Prof. Dr. Muhammad Ismail said that since not a single kilometer of (blacktop) road was paved in the entire Upper Chitral district, there was a risk of frustration and revolt among the youth. I want to divert the emotions of these frustrated youth towards positive work so that conditions like Balochistan and Bangladesh do not arise here. This campaign was started with prayers words. .
Hundreds of people from Mastuj marched towards the road with their spades, shovels, tractors, trolleys and other equipment to blacktop the road on self-help basis. , the volunteers began repairing and constructing the 30-kilometer road themselves.
Talking to our correspondent, Prof. Ismail said that we do not challenge the government’s writ nor do we revolt against the government’s allies but our objective is that Pakistan has given us a lot and now Pakistan’s economic situation is weak. That’s why we want to help the government. In the first phase, the road will be repaired, leveled and then it will be blacktopped. So far we have not solicited donations from no body but if anyone wants to donate voluntarily they will be welcomed.
Former Tehsil Nazim Shahzada Sikandar-ul-Mulk said that we had built this road 25 years ago and we were looking forward to the government agencies that maybe they will come and help us but in the last 20 years no government has paid attention to this road. we are forced to build this road with our help and take it to Bani Gala and will invite Prime Minister Imran Khan to come and inaugurate the road after completion.
Hasil Murad is a social worker who says that the government has not built this road in last twenty five years. This road is very narrow and there are a lot of pitches in its middle and many vehicles have faced accidents, fallen into a deep ravine In which many precious lives have been lost.
Another social activist, Subedar Rahmat Zar said that Chitral was formerly an independent state and we aspired to join Pakistan but unfortunately we are being treated like stepmothers.
Prof. Ismail says that all the places of tourism are located in Mustuj Tehsil. In this area there are beautiful valleys like Shandor, Brugal where thousands of tourists come every year but they face many difficulties due to earthen and poor condition of road. The people of the area decided to build this road on self-help basis.
He said that many people have paid their full salary for the construction of this road and pensioners have donated two months pension, as well as women have decided to donate by selling their jewelry and we have to organize a donor conference very soon to collect charity for the construction of this road he added.
Saima Ayub, a local woman from the area, said not even a single kilometer of road beyond Booni was paved. There have been many accidents while crossing this narrow and dangerous road and most of the women die before reaching the hospital. It is very dangerous to take these women to the hospital on this road during maternity.
Bisma Aziz is a college student. She says that when she goes to college on this road, she is very scared because we have had many accidents and the car fell hundreds of feet down into a deep ditch and fell into the river and lost many precious lives. Our lives are in danger on this road. She appealed to the provincial and federal government as well as international donors organizations and philanthropists to help them in the construction of this road.. she also demand from the government agencies C&W or NHA to come and build this road immediately so as to save them from more accidents and miserable life. .. GH Farooqui, 20 Aug 2020
A large number of workers, traders and social activists held a demonstration in the Khar Bazaar, the district headquarters of Bajaur.
JI Bajaur chief Maulana Waheed Gul, PPP district president Aurangzeb, ANP leader Sayed Sadiq Akbar, JUI-F’s Said Badshah, PML-N’s Gul Kareem Khan, Qaumi Watan Party’s Mohammad Hayian, Bajaur Youth Jirga president Waji Ali Khan, former MNA Sahibzada Haroon Rasheed and others addressed the protest.
The speakers, who had worn black armbands, expressed grave concern over the exclusion of Bajaur from the CPEC’s western route.
They pointed out that the then federal government had promised to include Bajaur in the CPEC after merger of former Fata with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
However, they said according to the reports Bajaur had been excluded from the CPEC’s western route due to unknown reasons.
The speakers termed the step a bid to keep the region backward. They slammed the local lawmakers for not raising the issue in the assembly.
They warned to hold protest demonstrations outside the residences of lawmakers in Bajaur if they did not play their due role in that regard. They also warned to observe a complete shutter down strike across the district during the upcoming visit of Chief Minister Mahmood Khan to the region if their demand was not addressed before his visit.
In Lower Dir, the opposition parties observed a black day to record protest against the alleged dropping of Chackdara-Dir-Chitral route from the CPEC.
Jamaat-i-Islami’s Lower Dir chapter had arranged the protest, which was attended by workers and leaders of all opposition parties, traders, lawyers and civil society members.
JI Lower Dir chief Aizazul Mulk Afkari, former MNA and chief of Dir Qaumi Jirga Sahibzada Mohammad Yaqoob Khan, PPP district president Nawabzada Mehmood Zeb Khan, former provincial minister Bakht Baidar Khan, JUI-F emir Maulana Sirajuddin, ANP’s Malik Mohammad Zeb, president Timergara traders union Haji Anwaaruddin, PML-N’s Malik Jehanzeb, former district bar president Jehan Bahader and others spoke on the occasion.
They said the previous PML-N government had approved Chackdara-Dir-Chitral CPEC route and even funds for it had been allocated in the PSDP, but the incumbent PTI government had dropped the project, depriving the people of Chitral, Dir and Bajur districts of its benefits.
The speakers said restoration of the CPEC route was a matter of life and death for millions of people of the said districts.
In Chitral, civil society and political parties’ activists took out protest processions from different bazaars of the Chitral city against the exclusion of Chakdara-Chitral route from the CPEC. The processions converged into a big meeting at Atalique Chowk.
The heads of various political parties and civil society organisations, including former district nazim Maghfirat Shah, Maulana Abdur Rahman, Saleem Khan, Niaz A Niazi Advocate, Shabbir Ahmed, Eidul Hussain and others, addressed the meeting, and warned the government of widespread protests in Dir and Chitral if the road was not included in the CPEC.
They said exclusion of the project from CPEC had shocked the people of Chitral and Dir as they had pinned high hopes on it since it was approved during the JCC meeting of Pakistan and China three years ago. .. Source
CHITRAL: The past five months have been very challenging for the country. It is only now when the Covid threat is receding that life is returning to normalcy. While the Covid restrictions were on and the few playgrounds like the historic polo ground and parade ground of Chitral town were closed for repairs etc, many young people who would be spending the evenings on these grounds indulging in healthy sports or at least watching others play, have turned to smoking cigarettes and cannabis. A youngster from Zargarandeh talking to CN said many frustrated young men whom he personally knew had started smoking chars (hashish) during the restrictions on sports and lack of play fields.
Chitralis by nature are outdoor people, lover of sports and possess lot of natural expertise in various games. The lack of opportunity for the young ones to exercise their healthy interests is pathetic. An evening walk along the bank of the river in Chitral town would witness groups of young men cuddled together at different selected scenic points enjoying the ‘puff’ à la ‘dum maro dum, mit jaye ghum’ style.
Also read: A Gymnasium in Chitral town
The government should lay special emphasis on providing healthy sports and health building opportunities to the youth. The sole gymnasium in Chitral town is a witness to frenzied body builders and health freaks coming in large numbers showing how much is the potential interest and the need of healthy sports outlets for the youth, both outdoors and indoors. .. CN report, 15 Aug 2020