Gilgit - Baltistan

Another GLOF in Ghulkin glacier has again struck Chat Ghusth, Ghulkin

by Zulfiqar Ali Khan, Ghulam Nasir & Mir Baz Khan

Hunza, June 14: A team of volunteers of Pamir TImes has reached the spot and they have confirmed the news about extra ordinary volume of water flow caused by the third Glacial Lake Outburst Flood, within the past few weeks. The destruction caused by this recent GLOF is far greater than the previous ones, said one of our correspondents.

In the mean while local people have not shown any enthusiasm for quickly reopening the KKH, as they had been doing during the past. They maintained that the government loses interest in the well being of the local people when the road is cleared for traffic. The local people have demanded sustainable solutions.

Many people argue that this is a result of the global climate change. This would be discussed at a conference in Gilgit, next week, addressing the climate change and its impact on the moutain communities. It is pertinent to note that the entire Gilgit – Baltistan is home to some of the largest glaciers in the world, outside the poles. Siachin Glacier, Batura Glacier, Hisper Glacier, Biafo Glacier and many other smaller glaciers are located within the boundary of the region. The communities living between the glaciers, in scattered valleys, are genuinely feeling unsafe and uncertain about future of the region.

According to reports, another GLOF from Ghulkin glacier has caused release of huge volumes of water near Chat Ghusth, Ghulkin causing huge damages to properties and KKH. The flood has blocked KKH and caused huge damages to agriculture fields, irrigation channels, orchards, cattle sheds and some seasonal houses.   

The Local Administration Hunza and office bearers of Ismaili Local Coucil and FOCUS Humanitarian are present at the site to deal any further emergency situation. However, all organizations, including the government, are either ill equipped to face the situation.

The volunteers of FOCUS have reached the spot and are helping the passengers in crossing the flooded part of KKH. A temporary  and vulnerable bridge has been constructed to help the passenger go through. There was an incident when a senior citizen fell into the water while attempting to cross the shakky bridge. The volunteers helped the senior citizen quickly and took her out, unharmed.


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  1. The situation seems to be very devastating and needs more attention to be paid towards a better solution.
    The impact of global warming has laid down many hopes but it shouldn’t be so in real sense because nature has its own demands and its own way.Well whatever is caused by the anthropogenic activities,that is all understood and all evident before everyone.The human beings have disbalanced the nature’s equilibrium and has led to many problems,a segment of which is being experienced by the poor mountain men who are not more into the destruction of the nature.

    We should hope for the best and should strive for the options to minimize the risk.
    I would once again request the experts to get into the depth of things and suggest something which could minimize the rate of suffering.
    Aslam Ghalib

  2. Did the community, NALC, District , UC reps. and/or government officials popped in with Chairman National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) Lt Gen (Retd) Farooq Ahmed Khan?

  3. The incidence which happened at Chatghust for the third time is something unusual as we never thought about it in our recent history.Now when the damage is done we are still thinking what has happened but not thinking what can be done and how to prevent such one time big losses.The Govt officials are not careful to make any preventative measure through public awareness programme.They never identified the actual problem i e the leakage area even it is not impossible to fill such leakages by using bulldozers. We are just saying it is an environmental issue yes but we must analyze it rationally.It is not enough to distribute edibles to the local community instead we must try some pragmatic and sustainable solutions.Ghulkin glacier is a challege to the geologists and environmentalists but we can minimize the loss to property by making protective barriers to the weak boundry wall OF THE Glacier (GUNGRI).
    Global warming is the biggest problem but the big polluters like USA China and India are not making serious effort to reduce the CO2 emission that is depleting the ozone layer that results in global warming.
    -I suggest the Govt Pakistan with the help of IUCN, WWF and UNEP must conduct a collaborative study about the increased mass movements of glaciers in the Northern Areas. specifically in glaciers where the GLOF emerged.
    -EIA of the affected areas and mitigating solution and guidence to the local population.
    -The local experts must be consulted to get clear understanding about the history and topography as well climatic changes.

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