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Rally held against power outages, tunnel closure

CHITRAL, Jan 29: The Jamaat-i-Islami Chitral on Tuesday held a protest rally against power outages and ‘unnecessary’ closure of the Lowari Tunnel. ji copyLed by former MNA Abdul Akbar, the rally started from Bazaar Masjid and ended at the polo ground gate, where it converted into a public meeting presided over by Maulana Ghulam Mohammad, the chief of JI Chitral and a former MPA. Speaking on the occasion, the LI leaders said PESCO Chitral was resorting to 12 to 20 hours loadshedding.  According to WAPDA rules, there would be no loadshedding where consumers pay 100 per cent utility bills. However, in Chitral this rule was not being implemented. The speakers while referring to the rules, however, did not mention why similar outages were being experienced in urban areas of the country where the consumers also paid their bills regularly. The speakers also criticized the government over the Lowari Tunnel. They said though the under-construction tunnel was closed for four days a week, there was no work inside the tunnel. They also passed a unanimous resolution demanding an end to the prolonged power outages and upgradation of local power house from 600 KV to two megawatt. They also demanded opening of Lowari Tunnel for traffic on a daily basis. If the Korean company staff wants to continue work they should assume work on the small tunnel because its blacktopping was still pending. They alleged that there is no work inside the tunnel but NHA paid Rs1 billion to the Korean company annually only to cheat the people of Chitral and get votes in the coming election.—GH Farooqui]]>

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