The fate of ex-NWFP and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa of today

In our childhood we used to hunt birds with catapults with small stones as missiles. Later when we grew older our elders taught us how to shoot a gun and make aim.

In our district Chitral long range .22 rifles and shotguns were generally used for minor hunting and some heavier calibre rifles like .303 and 7mm rifles for big hunt and target shooting. By then the area was exempted from fire arms license restriction for it was named as PATA (provincially administered tribal area) with some specific regulations of its own.

Three main districts made of the states of the past were included in this formation and they were Dir, Swat and Chitral. Some privileges were given to these districts as ‘exemption from taxation in trade and electricity utilization and concession in possession of light arms’.

Our government system is based on deceit and slow based alteration so that no one is alarmed of a sudden imposing of restrictions. Thus with the course of time the PATA regulations were gradually started abandoning and general regulations were brought in, in a slow process.

When some people were arrested with shotguns under the act of illegal possession of arms for the first time, then it was known that some change had been brought.

Now when the tribal areas (FATA) have also to be brought under the government jurisdiction, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa is becoming a bigger province and the will of the people will also need to be cared more about. We do not say that FATA or PATA regulations be revived but at least some privileges be given to the remote regions of the province.

The government should not try to snatch their guns and make them as sitting ducks. Each citizen of Israel is given two to three years battle training only to introduce them to weaponry while in our country men are made to cease remain real men. Quaid-e-Azam once said the north-west is our fighting arm. That is to be kept in mind beside this, that an army of a nation alone will never be able to keep a nation stand.

An army of a disturbed and discontent nation will be as disturbed and ill as itself.

Aman ul Mulk was the last sovereign ruler of Chitral state in mid nineteenth century. Bashgal or Kafiristan now Nuristan is the adjacent valley of Chitral that was ruled by Kafirs who were dreaded for their ruthlessness and unruly sabotage activities but they were in loose alliance with Chitral state government. Once Aman ul Mulk was asked by some adviser for why not subdue the Kafiristan in a proper manner for ever.

Aman ul Mulk said, Kafirs are not against us and we are surrounded in enemies from all around. So, let the Kafirs in loose state so that our enemies dread them and we do not remain under their direct threat.


Mohammad Ilyas Khwaja
Village Goldoor, Chitral.

One Reply to “The fate of ex-NWFP and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa of today”

  1. The learned writer must be knowing that the Border Police force which is commanded by the DC Chitral recruuts locals in the border regions of Chitral whom are given with arms and ammunition to be used only for the purpose of protecting the borders. Practically this has become a redundant force now and it calls for radical changes in the structure. Secondly, when we grew up there was a system in place wherein elders from selected villages were given rifles by the govt. to protect their villages from foreign invaders. This seems silly now but imagine those times before 70s when arms and ammunitions were scarcely available; even one gun in a village would give hope of protection to the locals.

    Gun violance, pro and against gun lobbying is a burning issue in America these days. According to their laws every citizen has the right to carry a licensed gun for their own protection except for some states which have banned this practice altogether.Both lobbysts have compelling arguments in their favour. One must have the right to protect themselves and their families so guns should be provided; on the other hand those people who principally are against keeping arms in their possession or cannot afford to have a gun, are at the receiving end. They live in constant fear in places where guns are freely available. The point is; Is it wise to carry/keep a gun in the name of centuries old tradition of hunting-in 2018? because I don’t see any other valid reason for us Chitralies to keep a gun.OR is it still a matter of false pride of having a Winchester, Birmingham, American, Rusi or Spanish repeater 12bore gun? If its hunting, that is absurd because what we have done to the migratory birds,high mountain patridges and mountain goats and markhors with these guns in the past 40 years-is unforgiveable!

    So the big question is “Should we still be wanting to keep a gun?” Is it morally correct for a human population in Chitral which grows its own kind each year by 1.8% to diminsh the hugely decreased number of migratory birds, sparrows, patridges, and mountain goats?? It is high time that we should think about our future, do we want our homeland full of guns but birds? or there is an easy alternative out there? STOP HUNTING AND STOP GUN LOBBYING.

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