GILGIT: Political parties, students and religious and civil society organisations on Sunday announced starting a joint protest movement for permanent settlement of political status of Gilgit-Baltistan.
Protest demonstrations were organised by GB residents in Skardu, Islamabad and Karachi.
The protesters rejected the Supreme Court of Pakistan’s judgment regarding the GB status and said if the region cannot be declared a part of Pakistan then give it internal autonomy. They wowed to oppose any executive order to govern GB without determining its permanent status.
A large number of activists from various organisations gathered at Yadgar-i-Shuhada in Skardu. The protesters were chanting slogans against the federal and GB governments for depriving the GB people of their constitutional rights.
People taking part in demonstrations in Skardu, Islamabad and Karachi reject SC verdict
GB Youth Alliance leader Sheikh Hasan Johari was arrested on Thursday for allegedly creating hatred in Skardu. The protesters said Sheikh Hasan Johari had been arrested for diverting people’s attention from demanding their rights.
Speaking to the protesters Ghulam Mohammad, Shahzad Agha and Mohammad Ali Dilshad said the local administration was creating the law and order situation. They said the GB people were being portrayed as traitors while they were loyal citizens of Pakistan. A multiparty conference was held in Islamabad to develop consensus to start a joint action.
GB opposition leader retired captain Shafi Khan, former chairman of Awami Action Committee Sultan Raees, Agha Rizvi, former member of the GB Assembly Amina Ansari, retired judge of the Supreme Appellate Court Syed Jaffar Shah, Advocate Ehsan Ali, Ali Mohammad Yar, Mohammad Sami, Karakoram National Movement leader Javed Hussain, GB Supreme Council chairman Dr Ghulam Abbas, political, civil and social activists attended the conference.
In a declaration, the conference resolved that a joint movement would be launched for the rights of GB people. It said the conference unanimously rejected the Supreme Court of Pakistan’s judgement. The declaration said the recent SC decision removed the confusion, now GB is a disputed territory and the rights of its people should be ensured. It said the elected GB assembly should be empowered to deal all subjects except three fundamental matters of the state, including foreign affairs, currency and defence.
The set-up like AJK Supreme Court should be provided for independence of judiciary in GB. Civil officials’ quota in all GB government organisations from other parts of the country should decrease and harassment of political activists under Fourth Schedule and Anti-terrorism Act should end.