by Ghulam Nasir, Farhat Ullah Baig & Noor
Gulmit & Sost, January 12: While the government authorities are shamelessly lying about the presence of thousands of sacks of flour and other food items in the depots of Gulmit and Sost, an inspection by our team members and discussions with relevant people present a completely different story.
According to Mr Ali Yar Khan, a volunteer responsible for the emergency food supplied to Gojal, there are 2000 KGs of flour, 500 KGs of rice and 320 KGs of sugar available at the relief camp established in Gulmit. “We have not issued even a single kilogram of the goods available here to the local people”, he told PT talking on phone. “Most of the food is being used by the government machinery, including police officials, members of the Tehsil administration and the team of health department present in the village”, he revealed.
“The remaining food is being given to around seventy (70) truck drivers stranded in Gulmit due to KKH blockade and around fifty laborers stuck in the valley”, he further said. “Only a few sacks of flour have been given to some families displaced from Attabad village”, he further said.
According to Mr Ali Yar Khan in-charge of the relief camp, additional DC of Diamir, Rasheed Ali, is responsible for issuing the food supplies, along with an assistant commissioner deputed in the region.
According to Farhat Ullah Baig, our correspondent, 1000 bags of wheat are available at the government depot established in Sost. “The utility store has been emptied by anxious buyers”, he said. 40 KG bag of flour is being sold for 1800 rupees in Sost.
According to a survey conducted in Sost market, the sale of food items has increased by 15 % during the past week.
“Yesterday around eighty community members of Ghulkin village carried food items on their back, walking over a distance of 10 kilometers”, Mr Ali Yar Khan told Pamir Times. “A team of volunteers from Gulmit is also preparing to walk all the way to Aliabad and bring back food items available in Aliabad”, he further said.
It is pertinent to note that reports from all parts of Gojal valley are not available due to lack of access. The few thousand kilograms of some items are not going to suffice for more than 22, 000 people of Gojal valley.
It is also important for the government to not base its assumptions on the population data of 1998 census. 11 years have passed since then and the population has increased above 22, 000 people.
The local communities have demanded immediate import of food from China through Khunjrav Pass.