Conference in Gilgit demands calamity hit status for disaster affected areas of Hunza

Words: Ghulam Nasir Images: Asghar Khan & Ameen Saif Pamiri

Gilgit, March 9: Speakers at a conference held in Gilgit today said that if the government did not increase pace of the debris removal work at barrier of the lake formed on Hunza River the ensuing threat posed by the lake would inflict heavy losses to life and property from Hunza to Tarbella. The political leaders also threatened to launch a movement across GB if pace of the debris removal work was not enhanced and if the government did not take concrete steps to safeguard life and property of people upstream and downstream of the lake. The speakers included leaders of various political parties and religious groups. The speakers unanimously termed the lake hazard to be of great risk for the entire region and not only Gojal valley.

Conference papers read during the event highlighted the existing and future human, economic and cultural cost of the Gojal lake hazard. The speakers unanimously demanded of the government to declare Gojal valley as calamity hit and develop service delivery mechanism for health, education and economy. The speakers also expressed dissatisfaction with the pace of work and demanded that the debris removal contract shall be given to a consortium of international agencies instead of relying solely on the expertise of FWO.

The conference had been called by the coordination committee of affected people of Gojal valley.

The conference was also attended by representatives of FOCUS Pakistan. Regional program manager of the humanitarian agency said that they have trained communities in 23 vulnerable villages of Hunza – Nagar and Gilgit districts for coping with the challenges that might be caused by a sudden release of water from the artificial lake formed on Hunza river. He also said that FOCUS has installed sms triggered modern sirens at 12 most vulnerable villages along the bank of Hunza River to alert the people during disaster situation. He further said that FOCUS provided three months food for the displaced people of Attabad village and is providing food and other relief material to the displace people of Ayeenabad as well.

Also present at the occasion was the representative of Pakistan Red Crescent Society. He also explained PRCS’ role during the Attabad disaster.

Hafiz Hafeez ur Rehman of PML (N) said that the government has not been able to satisfy the local people’s demands and that his party stands with people of the disaster hit area. Other speakers at the occasion were MLA Mirza Hussain, Nawaz Khan Naji (BNF), Kalb Ali, Ghulam Muhammad (PPP), Ali Qurban, Fazal Amin Baig and Rehan Shah. The speakers expressed solidarity with the people of Gojal and said that they would mobilize support for the cause of Gojal.

Representatives of various government departments were also present during the conference.

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  1. PLEASE READ THIS MESSAGE AND POST IT AT RIGHT PLACE AND PLEASE put all press coverage in full.thanks you

    There was high level conference in Islamabad yesterday to discuss Attabad landslide .The meeting was Chaired by Minister of Environment.
    The Chair person of FOCUS Ms Khadija Shaban presented very well a report of Dr David Petley of International Landslide Center at University of Durham. She also told all of them that Attabad landslide is a national issue and needs urgent help. Dr. Petley was invited in Feburay 2010 by FOCUS to carry out the survey of Attabad landslide and the potential disaster. The minister highly appreciated the work of FOCUS. Cheif Sec G-B and Home Sec of G-B were also present.

    A lot of press coverage has been given to this meeting in press. Please print all of this on your blog. Now this disaster is being taken seriously thanks to FOCUS and Pamir Times

    The Nation

    The News International

    The News International

    The Daily Mail

  2. Our yesterday conference remain very successful, and I am very optimistic that in this crucial time all our friends will join us for future development…without unity it is not possible to achieve our targets…I realy appreciate our leaders Ali Qurban, Khuda Dad, Rehan Shah and others for their great efforts for people of Gojal…Another person who made this conference successfull is Ali Ahmed, who done a very execellent job throug a documentory…

    Remember Gojalies this is the time of unity..we all have to deliver our part..

  3. This was a successful event. Congratulations to Gilgit unit and ali kurban and his dedicated team for sensitizing the elected people and bringing together key stakeholders, upstream and downstream.

    I must say the video documentary was excellent. Congrats to Rehan for his strong narration and script and AA photos and PT for the video clips and editing.

    Great work. the great work lies ahead.

    Amin Beg

  4. The conference organized by the coordination committee is big achievement beside a lack of resources. The conference was fruitful in terms of calculating the risks in the minds of the political figures and civil society of Hunza Nager and Gilgit.

    Leadership for many parties of GB participated in this conference including PPP leader Ghulam Mohd of Ghizer but due to the so called meeting of PPP, Mr.wazir Baig and Mr.Muthabiat shah were unable to attend that conference to share their contribution with the audiences.

    The public are unaware why our representatives are so cautious to criticism

  5. The rabita committe has done great job and so have done the participants. Congratulations

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