Thursday, April 28, 2011

Is Parachinar not part of Pakistan, asks NA panel chief

Mumtaz Alvi
Monday, April 25, 2011
ISLAMABAD: Over 100 residents of militant-besieged Parachinar, which is the headquarters of Kurram Agency, have set up a protest camp outside the National Press Club to press the government for ridding them of the armed gangs of Taliban.

Through a memorandum, a copy of which is available with The News, the Youth of Parachinar, a platform of Turi and Bangash tribes, aired some questions: Is Parachinar not a part of Pakistan? Is it really impossible for the government to open and make secure the main Thal Parachinar-Peshawar Road that was closed over four years back?

It continued could a civilised nation justify the crippling embargo on a population of more than 0.5 million people? Is there any humanitarian organisation in Pakistan that could help alleviate deepening sufferings of these people, facing acute shortage of life-saving drugs and other medicines: paucity of daily use items such as rice, atta, tea, sugar and groceries?

"I have met the President at least 20 times and Prime Minister 40 times on different occasions and raised the issue with them but it appears either they are insensitive to our agony or unable to do anything to drive the militants out of Parachinar," said an MNA from the Kurram Agency's headquarters Sajid Hussain Turi while talking to The News at the camp.

Turi, who is chairman of the National Assembly's standing committee on States and Frontier Regions, pointed out as the government functionaries were unable to perform their responsibility in Parachinar there was a breakdown of civil and social services: education and health were the most affected sectors; donors and foreign philanthropists had also stopped visiting the area due to seething insecurity.


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