Flood, quake-hit people of Kosht block Chitral-Mastuj road

Gul Hamaad Farooqi

Charun—Hundreds of flood, quake-hit people from Kosht, Charun, Kuragh, Booni and Reshun blocked Chitral-Booni Mastuj road at the lower bridge in Charun village.
The angry protesters gathered at Charoon bridge and blocked the road saying they would continue the protest till there three demands are met.
Addressing to the protest sit-in speakers said they had three main and genuine demands and wanted the government to fulfil without any further delay and making hollow promises.
The first demand was the reconstruction of the Bumbagh water channel from the Mastuj river which was washed away during the July-August 2015 floods and has not been repaired. Protesters said, fruit trees and agricultural crops in the Bumbagh village were at the verge of destruction without water.
The second demand was the reconstruction of the only bridge of Kosht in front of Charun that was also washed away in the flood. A temporary bridge arranged by the army would be washed away when the water level in the river increases in a few weeks, disconnecting the whole area. The government has so far done nothing to reconstruct the only bridge, he added.
The third demand was the payment of compensation to the owners of houses damaged in the October 26, 2016, earthquake. They said the local administration had carried out verifications of the damages several times but the affected people were yet to be paid the compensation announced by the federal government. They said this was the issue being faced by the people of whole subdivision Mastuj.
They also alleged that Benazir Income Support Program fund also giving to influential persons and most of poor and deserving widows and oppressed people were deprived from this financial support.
Later, addressing the protesters, Sardar Hussain Shah of Green Lasht said Rs50 million donation given by PPP central leader Syed Khursheed Shah for the earthquake-hit people of Chitral were distributed by MPAs Sardar Hussain and Salim Khan among their own cronies.
Rahmat Salam Lal, Parvez Lal, A/C retired Sardar Muhammad, some female students of the area also spoke on the occasion.

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