People in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, Gilgit-Baltistan, are protesting in the streets, demanding wheat flour, pulses, and power supply. They are protesting against the sharply rising inflation and unemployment, The Times of Israel reported.
This comes as Pakistan faces an economic crisis. Citizens hit by floods and the country’s food crisis have long remained silent witnesses to the failure of leadership at all levels. But the worst for the people of occupied Kashmir has been the flight of their so-called President Barrister Sultan Mehmood Chaudhry who flew out, amidst angry street protests, on a two-week visit to Turkey, the United Kingdom and Belgium. No one knows the urgency of such a flight but public anger has only sharpened at this abandonment, according to The Times of Israel.
This isn’t the first time that Pakistan’s leaders have chosen to escape rather than face the truth.
People have for the past several months, been protesting against the high-handedness of the army which controls the region like its colony. The army is responsible for large-scale land grabbing and usurping of mineral mines in the region.
China and Pakistan business houses, in the name of China Pakistan Economic Corridor, have been looting the region’s local resources.
According to The Times of Israel, in the nearby Gilgit Baltistan, people have been up in arms against the local administration and federal government for open land grabbing by the army. In December, a small town, Manawar, witnessed a raging public protest at the detention of youngsters for protesting against the army. The army has been quick to clamp down on the protesters by charging them as terrorists.
The region is being converted into a religious hotbed by the army and political parties. Clashes over small matters have become common.
According to the Times of Israel, people believe such sectarian conflicts are being created to camouflage the failure of governance and fear of public revolt.
Voice of Vienna recently reported that the deteriorating condition of Gilgit-Baltistan is a matter of great concern as the region has lost its political and constitutional identity in the past seven decades.
Gilgit-Baltistan is currently in a serious financial crisis and seeking the release of funds from the federal government.
Gilgit-Baltistan Governor Syed Mehdi Shah highlighted the region’s financial crisis and asked for financial aid from the federal government, reported Dawn.
Sources told Dawn that the federal government had not released the annual financial development grant of the GB as the region depends on the financial grant of the federal government.
Meanwhile, the region is facing a serious shortage of wheat. However, due to an increase in the wheat price across the country and GB, the GB government had to purchase less wheat which resulted in the wheat shortage in the area as additional funds from the federal government are required to purchase the required quantity of wheat for the area people.