MASTUJ: People of Mastuj, including social workers and political activists, started a hunger strike against non-repair of Chitral-Mastuj road despite repeated demands and protests by the locals and government’s promises.
The hunger strike camp has been set up at Kruideri where a Chitral Scouts double cabin fell into a ravine killing three personnel on Dec 20.
The main road connecting Upper and Lower Chitral has been in a dilapidated condition creating not only hardships for the commuters but also causing frequent accidents.
In June 2019, people of Mastuj, Laspur and Yarkhun started a protest drive demanding the government launch work on the road. Thousands of people took part in the protest. Later, ruling party (PTI) MPA Wazirzada visited the protest camp in Mastuj and assured the people that work on the construction of the road would be started in December 2019.
He had also said the federal government had allocated Rs1 billion in the fiscal budget 2019-20. On his assurance, the people of the area had ended their protest.
But so far the government failed to make any progress on the launching of the construction work on the road.
In September, when ChitralToday contacted the MPA and asked him about the progress on Mastuj road project, he had said tenders for the project would soon be floated soon after completion of formalities.
The participants of the hunger strike on Sunday told ChitralToday that despite pathetic condition of the road and sufferings of the people, the government remained a silent spectator.
They said in case of further delay in launching of work on the road, the hunger strike would be extended to other areas as well.–Akhtar Shad