The Darra Adamkhel Taliban, led by Tariq Afridi, claimed responsibility for the attack.Tariq said the killings were in retaliation for what he termed excesses committed by Shias against Sunnis in Gilgit-Baltistan. He said more such attacks would be carried out in other parts of
Name of victims, who were killed in Lolo Sar area of Jhalkhat, Naran/Kaghan area on 16 August.
Yaqoob Ali from Astore
Sajid Hussain from Astore
Ijlal Hussain from Astore
Ghulam Mustafa from Astore
Mohammad Hanif from Astore
Mazhar Ali from Astore
Ghulam Nabi from Astore
Nisar from Astore
Ishtiaq from Astore
Musharraf Alam from Bagrote
Fida Ali from Bagrote
Mansoor Khan from Bagrote
Haider Zaman from Gujranwala
Tahir Mehmood from Gujranwala
Mohammad Hussain of Karachi’s Shah Faisal Colony.
A police official said two of the victims were Sunnis.
The G-B chief minister has spent about 70% of his time in Islamabad in the past year, according to sources close to him.
Moreover, since the beginning of the winter season most lawmakers, including G-B Governor Pir Karam Ali Shah, Deputy Speaker Jamil Ahmed, Senior Minister Wazir Jaffer, adviser to chief minister and several other officials have stayed in Islamabad and other cities.
“The capital city is bleeding while the chief minister and his cabinet members are living in luxury in Islamabad,” said Imtiaz Khan, a local resident while referring to the recent attack on JUI-F information secretary.
In addition to that, the capital city of G-B has also witnessed the worst power crisis in its history, bringing life to a complete standstill.
Jehanzeb Hussain, a resident of Jutial, said, “With every case of target killing, the feeling of alienation gets multiplied among residents, who blame the government for ignoring the gravity of the issue.”
Taking note of the growing criticism from the people, the chief minister recently ordered the lawmakers to ensure their presence in the region and play their part in addressing people’s issues.
“If lawmakers have to go out of town for personal reasons, they should avail their leaves,” he said. Even though Gilgit has a long history of target killings, the situation has aggravated since 2005, when a religious scholar was targeted.
Most of the residents believe the situation has become out of control for the government, which has simply failed to arrest the culprits behind the violence.
Astore District in the eastern side of Nanga Parbat (8,126 m), is about 120 km long and 5,092 sq. km in area. The entrance of the valley is located about 60 km southeast of Gilgit with four side-valleys. The valley has more than 100 villages with a total population of 71,666 (Census Report 1998). The majority of people practice subsistence agriculture and livestock is the main source of livelihood complemented by seasonal work in down districts of the country.
Due to its diverse landscape and climatic conditions the valley provides excellent habitat for a variety of commercially important medicinal plants.
This paper quotes various studies on medicinal plant surveys and these are as follows:
A detailed medicinal plants’ survey in Astore, Shigar and Khaplu valleys reported 39 medicinally important plants out of which 21 were found in Astore. Similarly another survey found 34 medicinal plants in Bulashbar nallah, Astore whereas 77 medicinal plants were reported from Chilim, Burzil, Minimarg and Deosai in Astore valley in a separate study.
Chillam Choki, Astore
Since the British era until to-date, Astore valley has been the largest exporting area of medicinal plants in Gilgit Baltistan. Over-exploitation, free grazing, deforestation, conversion of forest and pastures to other land uses and lack of proper management system are major issues in the conservation of medicinal plants. Compared with forests and wildlife, most medicinal plants are able to give economic return in a shorter term, future prospects to make them sustainable income generators are good through the introduction of suitable participatory management system including marketing.
This paper by Ibrahim Khan seeks to explore the potential of the valley in terms of medicinal plants and identify NGOs willing to work for their promotion and to bring the attention of various stakeholders including herbal industries to the conservation of these valuable but fast deteriorating natural resources.
Rama Valley, which is home to Rama Lake, with basic facilities for visitors. It has a hotel called the PTDC, constructed by the government of Pakistan. Astore valley is a unique area for tourists to visit, surrounded by the high peaks of the far western Himalaya. Nearby the two river junction the village Louze, popular for apples,apricot, cherry and other fruits especially the wild almond oil. Louze a small village with literacy rate of about 95%, the only biggest power house for electricity supply up to 1000 kW to whole district approx since 1987, nearby Louze a peaks include Nanga Parbat, Shaigiri, Rupal Peak, Chongra Peak and Laila Peak (Rupal Valley). Astore Valley ascends from the Indus River Valley near Jaglot, Pakistan. Deosai plains are the highest plateau in himalayas and are most picturesque with a bowl shapped lake ,wild flowers,and a habitat of brown bear.The easiest route from Astore is via, Gorikot, Gudai,Chilum and then a track leads to this area with little steep hike.Its been declared a Natural park ,a special status to preserve its fora and fauna.
Astore valley has a moderate climate during summer. In winter it can snow up to 6 inches (15 cm) in the main valleys and up to 2–3 feet (60–90 cm) in the mountains. In Mirmalik valley it snows up to 6 feet (1.8 m) in February.
The main language spoken in the valley is Shina (also known as Tshina). Urdu, which is the National language of Pakistan, is the second most frequentlyz spoken language.There are different dialect of Shina spoken in the region. Since Astore has a history of modest tourist traffic in the summer months, local guides and police in Tarashing or Astore may speak some English.
Source (Tribune) The Gilgit police Sunday arrested a medical officer for conducting a fake autopsy of a nurse found dead in her room couple of months ago. Another doctor, wanted on same charges, was out of town and not arrested till last reports came in.
“The medical officer at the District Headquarter Hospital, Dr Yaqoob, has been arrested on court orders,” said a police official. Hospital sources, however, said that soon after his arrest, Yaqoob pretended to be a heart patient and had himself admitted in a hospital.
Shabana Akhtar, a young nurse from Astore valley, was found hanging from a ceiling fan in her room at the Gilgit Nursing Hostel in May. Initially police closed the case after a panel of doctors, headed by the medical officer Dr Yaqoob, examined the body and declared it a suicide.
However, after local media highlighted the issue, G-B’s Supreme Appellate Court took suo motu notice of the murder. The police launched a fresh investigation into the incident which eventually led them to Jamila, the hostel’s warden, and Nadeem Abbas, a male nurse. The two confessed to killing the 20-year-old nurse and staging her suicide. The murder’s motive, police said, was an “indecent” video of Jamila that Shabana had in her phone and was refusing to delete.
“A team of experts from Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences in Islamabad excavated the body and had it re-examined, which revealed that an autopsy had not been done before,” said an investigation officer.
Following the report, police issued arrest warrants for Dr Yaqoob and Dr Dilshad, he added. The male doctor was arrested; Dr Dilshad, however, was not arrested because she was reportedly out of the town.
A power project of 1.5 Mega Watt has been approved for upper region of Pareshing Mushke village, Gilgit Baltistan (GB) to meet the increasing energy requirements of thearea.
Executive Engineer Water & Power Fayyaz Alam while talking to APP on Tuesday said the location of Mushke village has been approved by the Planning and Development department and the project will be started by an open tender soon.
He said the estimated cost of this project is Rs. 20 million and it will take three to four years to complete.
Fayyaz Alam said that Assistant Chief Planning & Development department Israr Ahmed has approved the location and asked thecompetent authorities to further proceed.
He further said another power project of two Mega Watt in Shogora will be launched next month.