By Our Reporter
GILGIT: The increasing and unprecedented popularity of Gilgit-Baltistan National Alliance (GBDA) has not only sent a shock wave among the rulers but also perturbed the political parties in Pakistan.
These views were expressed by GBDA leaders including Ehsan Ali Advocate, Iqbal Advocate, Wazir Shafi, Mohammad Rafiq and Burhanullah while speaking at a press conference in Gilgit.
They said the recent statements of members of the so-called legislative assembly showed that they have totally lost public support and confidence and were trying to win support of the people under the garb of nationalism. They have also indicated formation of a nationalist party seeing the popularity of the nationalist forces in the region, they added. However, the people are now mature enough and will not play at the hands of such opportunists, the GBA leaders said.
They said as government of Pakistan, its secret agencies and administration officials posted in Gilgit-Baltistan were responsible for the over 61-yrear-long deprivation of the people of the region, the local so-called politicians were equally to blame for the situation. The recent political summersault of the legislative assembly members would on the one hand increase the sense of deprivation and give benefit to the exploitative forces and on the other cause embarrassment to the two million people of Gilgit-Baltistan at the national and international levels.
The GBDA also condemned a statement of the Force Commander Northern Areas in which he had termed Gilgit-Baltistan a part of Pakistan. They also criticized his allegations that the nationalist parties were involved in creating law and order in the region by using money and alleged that the government’s secret agencies had in the past spent billions of rupees to spoil peace in Gilgit-Baltistan. They said they were also aware of those elements who were ever ready to work against the people for money and therefore the Force Commander should not try to conceal the facts and point finger at the nationalist parties.
They said the State Subject Rule was being violated at will in order to turn the local population into a minority in the region. For the last a few years, people from Sindh, Punjab and NWFP have been allotted land in the region and leases of mines have also been given to outsiders. When people of Yasen-Gindayi protested against leasing out of mines in their area to a Chinese company, a number of innocent residents were arrested and put behind bars and were tortured without any reason, they regretted.
They also alleged that nationalist leaders were being harassed and they were receiving life threats. The secret agencies are also taping phones of the nationalists, they alleged.
They said efforts were also under way to create suspicions among the public about the nationalists.
They said nationalist parties were neither against Pakistan nor any other country but were struggling to win freedom for the people of the region.
They called upon the international human rights agencies to take notice of the injustices done with the region for the last 61 years and threats being issued to the nationalist leaders.
They also demanded unconditional and immediate release of those arrested in connection with the Gindayi protest.
By Our Reporter