SRSP RUSHES TO THE RESCUE OF SONOGHURITES
CHITRAL: Sarhad Rural Support Programme (SRSP) has allocated 3 million rupees for the rehabilitation of irrigation channels and drinking water supply scheme of Sonoghur village which was hit by the outburst of glacier in July last. The flood caused by the erosion of the glacier had washed away about one half of the village rendering 120 families homeless. The chief executive officer of SRSP Shahzada Masoodul Mulk paid visit to the affected village where the people apprised him of the problems faced by them. He was told that the foremost problem was that of the supply of drinking water and the rehabilitation of small irrigation channels to irrigate their fields. The community members will utilize the amount of money to rehabilitate the facilities. The woman organization was also provided with 0.2 million rupees by the chief executive for rehabilitation purposes. It is worth mentioning here that the Sonoghur village is the most beautiful tourist spot of the district known for its scenic beauty and it is mentioned abundantly in all the folk songs and tales of Chitral. More than 120 families of the village are residing in tents since July last and are screaming for aid but not heard by any quarter.
Many denied ‘Haj’ permission this year
CHITRAL: Only 45 intending Hajis from Chitral aspiring to go to Saudi Arabia to perform the annual pilgrimage will be able to do so this year. One regular and well informed Haji informed Chitral News that although many times more had applied for the government permission to proceed for Haj, only few could get it. The reason the source quoted was overall reduction in the quota of Hajis this year. It may be noted that every year scores of Chitralis apply for going to Saudi Arabia to perform Haj despite the increasing cost of the same. Most applicants are usually those who have retired recently and have ready cash from their pension give out, available with them for the purpose. Some are regular with a record of having performed Haj over a dozen times, whereas the religious obligation is only of a one time performance of the holy ritual.
Pre-Poll rigging in Chitral alleged
CHITRAL: Election commission should take notice of blatant pre-poll rigging being carried out aggressively by the PML(Q) candidate in Chitral for the last one month. This was stated by Wg Cdr (r) Fardad Ali Shah a PPP leader and expected candidate for the National Assembly seat, while talking to newsmen in Chitral. He said the PML (Q) candidate for National Assembly, Shahzada Mohiuddin is going around distributing electric poles and water pipes given to him by the Govt for the purpose of buying the mandate of the people. He said though the Chitralis are more aware now of such tricks but still abject poverty prevailing in the area makes them vulnerable to falling for such bribes. He said the Pakistan Peoples Party did not believe in such mean tactics, instead it would work for the collective welfare of the people from day one and not leave the people poor to be ‘bought out’ at the time of elections, which has been the patent policy of the PML(Q).
He asked the NGOs, particularly the SRSP to fear God and not become a tool in the hands of the PML candidate who is posing as if the ‘Khushhal Pakistan’ funds being dished out by the SRSP at this sensitive juncture were under his command.
The PPP leader said no cheap methods to corrupt the mandate of the people would succeed this time and the Chitrali people would do good to themselves and their motherland by electing the well deserving PPP candidates with over whelming majority in the coming elections
Islamabad-Chitral flights halted
CHITRAL: A dark day for Chitralis on 19 Nov when air service linking the district directly to the federal capital was terminated. PIA flights would now on operate to Chitral only from Peshawar as was the status 40 years ago. The direct air service from the capital was installed after much efforts from well meaning individuals but it received no support from politicians who were worried the credit was not going to them. Politicians who are in the run for office in the national elections were tacitly working against it behind the scenes. The PIA had not wanted the service to succeed from the first day for reasons best known to them. Seats were denied to intending passengers at Islamabad and the plane was made to fly almost empty to make a case for it’s cessation. The cessation of the service just at the time when Lowari pass is about to get blocked and the service most needed speaks of a conspiracy too. If the PIA records are checked from the time the flight started operating on 15 May to it’s cessation on 19 November it would be clear where lay the problem. Only a handful of passengers were flying from Islamabad and those too on chance tickets as confirmed tickets were not being issued, while on the other hand the return flight from Chitral to Islamabad was always full, even more in demand than the Chitral-Peshawar flight. This fact itself is enough to prove that the service was being strangled at Islamabad right from the first day. Wg Cdr (r) Fardad Ali Shah a PPP leader from Chitral has said that it would be his first priority that the air service for which he had worked so hard, be restored, improved upon and Chitralis be given more facilities instead of withdrawing the already existing ones. He said this has a typical similarity to the Lowari tunnel dream of 30 years ago which faced hurdles created by influential vested interests all these years, but eventualy did see materialisation.
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