Sun. May 16th, 2021

Third anniversary of Attabad landslide disaster today

The father and son who were killed by police officials in Aliabad Hunza while they were demonstrating peacefully
The father and son who were killed by police officials in Aliabad Hunza while they were demonstrating peacefully

Our Correspondent 

Gilgit, January 4: Three years have passed since the fatal landslide at Attabad village of Hunza Valley, which led to the death of 19 people and rendered hundreds homeless and landless. The debris of the landslide filled the Hunza gorge and caused destruction of five upstream villages, rendering thousands more homeless and landless.

The Hunza River is dammed even today, disconnecting China and Pakistan, despite of failed efforts by the Frontier Works Organization (FWO). Those who lost their land and shops, markets are waiting for compensation. Health facilities in the region are negligible despite of thousands of promises by officials and leaders of all ranks.

Renowned Peace activist, Ali Asghar, artistically symbolizes the current state of affairs related to January 4
Moorkhoon: Renowned peace activist, Asghar Ali Rumi, artistically symbolizes the silence regarding the  January 4 incident and its aftermath

Several dozens of people are suffering after being indicted in politically motivated cases while at least two members of the Progressive Youth Front (PYF) are still languishing in prison. The murderers of Sher Afzal and his father, Sher Ullah Baig are free, while the affected families wait for justice.

The people whose houses were destroyed by the surging water have been compensated significantly by the government in monetary terms. Ample relief items have also been provided to the people during the last two years.

Efforts of the FWO to lower the water level have not had much impact in the past
Efforts of the FWO to lower the water level have not had much impact in the past

Overall, a lot needs to be done to fully compensate the affected people, mostly because the complex disaster situation has affected the communities in multiple ways.

The local people are complaining that the media has forgotten the story of Attabad and the people of Gojal Valley who continue to suffer even after the lapse of three years.

8 thoughts on “Third anniversary of Attabad landslide disaster today

  1. Is the FWO doing anything or has it simply given up?

    One would think that the FWO would have by now come to the conclusion that it lacks the engineering capability to lower the lake and seek definitive assistance from those with engineers (Swiss, Chinese, whoever) capable of fixing the problem.

    Eventually there will be an earthquake powerful enough to dislodge the blockage and the resulting flood will claim large numbers of victims downstream.

  2. January 4, will always remind the people of Atta Abad and Gojal for its distractions, deaths and its heinous effects on their lives, Economics, Education, Health and livelihood. Thousands of people lost their houses, land, gardens and properties, in the results five villages are submerged.It deprived 25000 people of Gojal in safe traveling, business their children’s education and medication.More then 400 families migrated from Gojal and they are in a very difficult situation.To Day is January 4, 2013 we are going to celebrate black day of the failures of administration and FWO that they failed to release the dammed water properly.
    The most barbarous action was Killing of father and son of the soil. How the people will forget this day. it will be part of the history of Hunza Gojal and great learning to the people of the area that how to face such miseries and preparation to face the situations. we need strong unity to fight for genuine rights. Not need to loss hear Keep continue straggle.

  3. The disaster of January 4, 2010 between Hunza and upper Hunza (Gojal) reminds us each year the lack of political sense. The worth of their billions of property perished. People are completely upset due to dislocation from their habitual life. There is hue and cry of IDPs but no one hear them. Where do they go from here? Three years have gone and more 4 to 5 years will go but the present government and its hand-puppet stalwart (Jiyally)are celebrating their lords death and birth ceremony who sacrificed for nothing. They made the people of the areas just numbering them like goats and sheep for their votes.
    Each and every one of us should think how much we suffered and furthermore we will suffer economically, socially, educationally and culturally. Several times we submitted request to this ridiculous government (PPP) and it’s allied to drain water by Chinese engineers, but the deaf and dumb representatives of Gilgit Baltistan did not take it serious and left the people of Gojal rudderless. There are some greedy and opportunists in Gojal who opposed our momentum and favored their crumble eaters of feudal lords who gave them a unique democracy that does not exist in the world except in Pakistan. We the victims are really very unfortunate for facing this critical condition with our hypocrite and non conscientious representatives and greedy local friends. Why do they not realize that Attabad disaster gave not only the10th January catastrophe but also tor down economy and gave birth of character disaster?

  4. Another year of grief and misery. It is hard to imagine that the political reps of GB are very much busy, visiting Nodero the whole year expanding graveyards into shrines and constructing new cathedrals on shrines and spending millions on the advertisement on bursees, salgirahs of their lords. The serious issues of the public is not anywhere on their priorities. The Jialas of Gojal are unhappy with the political leadership of central Hunza and have announced to support Mohd Ali Akhter. It is very strange that these people are disintegrating Hunza and supporting a person who is very much responsible for our miseries. Ghulam Mohd, Qurban Mohd and Hajat Mohd occupied positions in the central committee of PPP Hunza but what was their role in the disaster. We must prepare ourselves for the worse time as it is ahead and God knows how we will coop with this chain disaster with such political anarchy and visionless public.

  5. As a Muslim it is believed that God assesses his followers through many ways like, natural disasters, earthquakes, land sliding, and epidemic diseases etc. This assessment affects locally as well as globally. That is why the 4th January also left many its un removal prints on GB history. The whole GBIANS can not forget this fatal and tragic incident that kept deprived for ever many people from their dearest ones.

    We appreciate all those organizations and individuals who participated in relieving the pain of affectees. We also pray for departed souls for their eternal peace.

    At the same times many questions arise here are also needs to answered.

    1. To what extent we were ready to accept this natural assessment and what was our (leadership, management and public) role or preparation or strategy to deal it or overcome this situation? Are we still sensitized enough or ready to face such situation.
    2. During situation, were we transparent and honest in providing information or making announcement for relief or conducting surveys?
    3. As a leader or manager how far we honoured and implied our commitment to address the issues of affectees?
    4. Are we still not too late to drain the water from lake? Was this our inefficiency or dishonesty or lack of accountability from all relevant responsible camps?

    Besides these questions the certain circumstances made the situation more worsen and vulnerable.

    Not having a strong coordinating body ( Govt, Civil Societies, Affectees) to resolve the emerging issues or reducing the frustration of IDPS. The affectees had to come on road and this accident also suffered the region and distorted the image of Govt. as well. We lost two lives beside the huge resources. Cases were registered against the youth that is still continuing. People are still in prisons. This man made hazard adversely suffered the people of Hunza/ Nagar. This was not natural and the result of our inefficiency, lack of rule of law, lack of professionalism, lack of accountability from all sides.

    After analyzing the situation still needs to reflect on actions to address the emerging issues.

    • Is there any body or platform that can guarantee or ensure that within time frame the water would be drainage?
    • Does the administration of Hunza /Nagar meet with GBDMA and GBLAs bi – monthly or quarterly to review the progress or up dates regarding addressing issues of all affectees?
    • Has GB top leadership and management developed any mechanism of follow up to resolve the issues regarding the Atta Abad lake and its affectees? Do they meet quarterly or need bases to address the emerging issues of GB or specific disaster hit villages whether these are in Baltistan Dahghoni or in Gilgit Saltro or in Hunza Atta Abad or Hussain abad , Mayoon and in Nagar sayan etc.
    • It is said that many issues are still needs to be resolved on priority bases in disaster hit areas i.e water for villages, land compensations, Medical facilities, and payment of declared amounts to IDPS.

    We expect with top leadership and management to develop long term strategies to overcome these issues and be pro- active and held responsible and strengthened to DDMA and GBDMA to overcome such unforeseen disasters.

  6. jub tak hum idpz khud apna haq k lia koshish nhi karanga koi b humara madad nhi kara ga.sub idarun ne humara sath game kia ha faryad ali from atta abad

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