Gilgit - Baltistan

[Ishkoman Power Riots] 61 people present themselves for arrest, 30 get bail

Karim Ranjha

Chatorkhand, December 19 (TR): Sixty one people named in power riots that erupted in Ishkoman Valley, Ghizar, presented themselves for arrest today at the Chatorkhand Police Station, in the Tehsil Headquarters. Thirty of the accused were released on bail while Challans for the others would be presented in a court for hearing.

Protesters had damaged public property, beaten up a magistrate and burnt a vehicle of the police department, while protesting against prolonged power outages in the otherwise peaceful Ishkoman Valley. The nine-day long protests ended yesterday after MLA Nawaz Khan Naji was successful in striking a deal with the government, on behalf of the protesters, who had nominated the nationalist leader as their representative for dialogues.

The government had accepted majority of the demands of the protesters, minus the demand for complete exemption from load-shedding.

Before presenting themselves for arrest, the accused attended a public gathering in which speeches were made in favour of the demands of the local people.

Speaking at the occasion Naji said that the ugly incident in Ishkoman happened due to corruption by the officials of PWD who, he said, preferred their own comfort over that of the people.

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