CHITRAL: Renowned economist Prof. Toufiq Jan has lamented the apathy of successive governments towards the worst condition of roads in the two districts of Chitral.
In a press statement, Prof. Jan said Chitral was the first princely state to join Pakistan in 1947. Our national and provincial leadership failed to address basic needs of people in Chitral during the last 74 years. Our close neighbour Dir Upper has 8,000 kilometers metalled roads whereas the two districts of Chitral covering 14,850 sq km area have only 185 kilometers of metalled roads.
Each government boasts that Chitral will be promoted as a tourist hub but no government ever paid attention towards the dilapidated condition of narrow and shingle roads connecting 32 valleys of Chitral with the rest of the country.
He pointed out that Kalash valleys, Garum Chashma and Shandur are among the spots of tourist attraction. But none of these places is accessible through metalled roads. The government machinery is busy in the rhetorics of economic zone, marble city and tourist hub. The fact is without 1,200 km metalled roads in the two districts of Chitral, none of these claims could ever be materialized.
He demanded that Chitral Lower and Chitral Upper make 20pc of KP’s area, therefore, the two districts of Chitral should be allocated 20pc of reassures in every year’s budget.
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Prof Jan has pointed out an important problem facing the people of upper and lower Chitral. “Roads our demand ” is popular slogan in the twin districts and prof Jan was the most vocal supporter of this demand in our first meeting in Lower Chitral.
True reflection of the agony and deprivation of the two districts of Chitral. This issue is based on logic and reality on ground. All partirs forum should come forward in support of this demand.