Chitral — If the current spell of rains do not cause more damage to our fragile infrastructure we will consider ourselves lucky. But we will not be able to depend on luck in future. Urgent work needs to be done for the following items otherwise the majority of the people of Chitral will suffer even more in 2016:
1. The Garam Chashma road, the roads to Bumboret and Rumboor and many portions of the Chitral -Mastuj roads are in a precarious and pitiable condition. These were extensively damaged in the floods and earthquake five months ago but, apart from temporary measures taken by FWO, no serious effort has been made to build them to any specification.
2. The main pipe of the Angargoon water, which supplies precious drinking water to most of Chitral town, can fall and break any day. After it was damaged in the last floods it lies suspended on dry-stone pillars which had been built hurriedly as a temporary measure and then left there for lady luck to help them hold the pipe.
3. The beautiful villages of Reshun and Greem Lasht (not Green Lasht) are being squeezed by the river on one side and the flood waters and debris from the mountain on the other side. If you care to to go to these two villages any day any time you will need no one to convince you that disaster is looming over the lives of the people who live here.
I have no doubt that in our district there will be many other places where infrastructure needs urgent attention. Chitrali people and friends of Chitral please use forums like Facebook to bring them to the attention of people who are in a position to do something about them.
These are no small matters. None of the items I have mentioned can face another flood. And rest assured another flood with more intensity is coming this year.
In the present scenario it has become incumbent on all our NGO’s to convince their donors to donate all future monies to these items. Infact they should go a step further and convince them to restructure their present commitments in a manner that will divert funds to these requirements. At a time like this it will make no sense to the people of Chitral if money is spent on workshops or embroidery classes.
There is calamity in Chitral. Whether the federal or the KP government does not declare us as a calamity struck district it will not lessen the severe strains under which we are living here. On the other hand if Chitral has been declared a calamity hit district then we are not seeing urgency in the way our government is going about to set things right.
All of us, including our media, must not only play our part to highlight the looming natural and man-made dangers around our beloved district but also play our part, even if it be a small bit, to help to put things right.— Siraj Ul Mulk, Hindukush Heights Chitral, 12 Mar 2016.