By Tara Khan:-

  1. On 31st October 1947, Gilgit, Bunji garrison and adjoining territories started witnessing dramatic events unfolding into a change of regime and a revolution in the offing. The people of Gilgit remained awake on night 31st October/ 1st November and troops moved from Bunji towards Gilgit, from Gilgit cantt towards Minawar and Agency house and the population could not sleep due to extreme excitement. Somewhat, a same situation in a different milieu was repeated after 62 years on 31st October and 1st November 2009.
  2. GBDA engineered a breakthrough after two decades of hard and wise struggle in individual and collective manner but the colonial govt of Pakistan was hell bent upon filling the vacuum with lies, bluffs, orders and packages. The political vacuum was to be filled up by Govt’s pet federal parties and Kashmiri name was made a taboo. GBDA leadership first of all stemmed the artificial tide of package bluffed support and then went onto a counter offensive by preparing the public for 1st November commemorations in a befitting manner. Gilgit proper, suburban towns and Bolor country district areas were hundred percent ready to come and participate at their own expenses, unlike the federal pet parties, who are spending money in millions and billions, the nationalist parties had only few thousand rupees. Some estimated cautiously that the turnout would be atleast ten thousand i.e. equal to one million of Karachi and Punjab in quality and quantity as well as effort in this sparsely populated area. The boys and the old were equally motivated and ready to participate. The non local colonial apparatus got afraid.
  3. GBDA leadership correctly estimated enemey’s designs and in the afternoon started preparing the Garhi bagh space for general public gathering. The government machinery got nervous and they decided at noon of 31st October 2009, not to allow this public gathering to be held at Garhi bagh at all cost. GBDA took advantage of the ensuing confusion and started the Jalsa in the evening with fiery speeches. In the meantime heavy contingents of police, elite force, Punjab rangers, Frontier constabulary and NA scouts started encircling the venue as show off force. Ultimately, GBDA leadership along with eighty colleagues were arrested at nightfall. The news of this stupidity spread like jungle fire. A significantly big protest rally circled Gilgit bazaars and dozens of people were arrested during night. Next day, the protests started simultaneously throughout Gilgit-Baltistan. All the roads leading to Gilgit were blocked by law enforcement agencies. Various rallies coming from Gilgit valley, Hunza-Nagar valley, Chilas, Astore and Baltistan were stopped. Confusion was compounded by intelligence agencies and their touts.
  4. Immediately after the arrest of GBDA leaders, students in Abbotabad blocked the Karakoram highway and ten Gilgiti students were arrested. In Golimar locality of Karachi , the students and others came out in the streets and 12 students were arrested. In Rawalpindi , there was a demonstration infront of press club. The people were annoyed, disturbed and felt insulted. On 1st November, there were atleast four significantly protest rallies in Gilgit city; despite intense election campaign. Throughout the day, there were rallies, protests and addresses at all Gilgit public squares and airport, where the two GBDA leaders were deported by air, escorted by close to hundred of armed law enforcement agency people. The rallies went to Yadgar-e-Shuhda to pay respects and make fiery and point blank speeches hitting the bull. There were press conferences. On 2nd and 3rd November, this phenomenon was repeated. On 3rd November, in Danyore chowk, there was a huge protest Jalsa. In Pakistan occupied Kashmir , there were admirable protest activities. On 3rd November, APNA held a press conference in Islamabad press club.
  5. Now, the eyes are fixed on 12th November, Election Day and thereafter 16th November i.e. the curse day of the arrival of Pakistani representative in Gilgit in 1947, who acted as non local – local authority instead of being a liaison officer.

Disclaimer: It is not necessary that GB TIMES agrees with the views of writer


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