ZAIT (Upper Chitral), April 21: The inhabitants of Upper Chitral have said their agricultural lands and houses are at the risk of being swept away by the Yarkhun river but the government is doing nothing to help them.
They expressed their anger over the situation in a meeting at Reshun. They said two residents of Reshun became homeless in 2010 due to a glacier burst in Gohkeer which blocked the river for several hours and then completely swept their lands.
The senior residents said it should not be forgotten by the local authorities that Reshun plays an important role in generating revenue to the government through its power station as well as to the employees, adding it is also providing water to its adjacent villages like Greenlasht, Showgram and Zait for both irrigating and drinking purposes. They also said that we get seven to 10 bags of wheat every year from an acre so some real step need to be taken. The residents said the following hamlets were at the risk of being wiped out.
Besides, residents said no step has been taken to mitigate the sufferings or compensates these beleaguered families and aids given by some of the NGOs were not distributed to the actual deprived. Some families became entirely homeless in Muli Junalikoch and their houses beams are still in the open air. The river is getting closer to the populous area in Mastuj, Chinar by cutting their lands and is a few metres from their homes. Our leaders should realize the value of human lives.
The house of knowledge, I mean the Government College for Women Junalikoch, also stands alongside the River Yarkhun. People of the area said that this was the senselessness of the authorities concerned to build such a costly building beside the river and one side of the wall was smashed by the mighty river tides two years back.
The residents also complained that our elected leaders always focusing on some particular areas and it is excruciating to pay no attention on other villages such as Chinar, Sarghuz, Awi, Junalikoch, Bumbagh, Reshun and Green Lasht etc, which are ready to be sweep. Only coming to survey by some of the geologists and other organizations are not enough according to the people of the area.
It is ill-fated that concerned authorities have not taken any kind of step yet. Kindly, save these precious soils through proper tactics and build strong water returning walls alongside the badly exaggerated areas before the torrential rainy season starts.– Munir Hussyn Fatimi