[Editorial] Mother Land of Attabad, Hunza Expired

Attabad, Hunza remained a wonder for many people for various reasons and the most perplexing questioned for outsiders was the living conditions of the people of the area and its high altitude. Often not only outsiders of Hunza rather the people belonging to Hunza were questioning that how people do live in a place which requires extraordinarily extra efforts for survival. As the first decade of 21st century  passed,  the people of the areas were still living in the centuries old traditional circumstances but people of the areas  were very happy and for them Attabad was the best place to live on the earth.

On 4th of January an unfortunate event struck with the happy lives of the people of Attabad and its adjacent village of Sarat which spill over to Salmanabad (Ghamsarat) because of  this almost 21 precious lives are lost, 180 family,(approximately 2500 people have been displaced) scarce and for many the only means of survival the land (fields, orchards and grassing areas) vanished, with it thousands of animals one of the major sources of income and livelihood too has been lost. Now these 2500 people due to the sudden changes of their lives and losing of their ancestral land and lost of their dear and near ones are facing many kinds of traumatizing incidents.

The heads of these 180 family have never ever imagined that one day they would be displaced from the lands and homes which they have build to provide a good living not only for their children rather for their grandchildren and children of their grandchildren too the same manner as they got it inherted from thier own grand parents. The lands which they were cultivating, homes where they were living and orchards from where they were ripping the heavenly fruit were not only the living place of those family member who were alive rather they were also place of the good spirits of their ancestors. Every time when elderly mom (Mamaa) or dad (Tati, Aya or Baboo) were starting their new activities where they were offering prayers for God they were also offering their prayers for the souls of their dead ancestors buried nearer. When these elderly moms and dads were asking for help from God they were also asking the help of the spirit of their dead loved ones and always belived that they are their working with them and supporting them to complete the tasks.

So the land for the people of Attabad and for rest of the people of Hunza is not a place which was only a means of living rather it was a place where they were meeting with the loved ones who died and were having hopes for those who were supposed to come yet to the world from their sons and grandsons. The land was holding for them the prayers of their ancestors for their success and growth in the worldly affairs as well as for spiritual upliftment.

For the imagination of the people of Attabad the land was a long lasting mother, which they have lost today. When mother of only one family in the village dies all family living in the village fell into mourning and sorrow and the impact remains till a generation. How painful and sorrowful  would it be, when mother of everybody dies suddenly, oh, the pain could only be seen in the eyes and at the faces of those who are going through such an unfortunate event.

Today everybody who belongs or friend to  Hunza and Gilgit-Baltistan wherever they are living in the world are sharing the sad and sorrowful movements of the people of Attabad, Sarat and Salmanabad (Gharai-Ghamsarat) and extends their sympathies for  losing of mother land and precious lives.  

It is a movement when the people of Attabad need your support and help for their immediate needs as well as for their long-term settlement programmes. In this regard any contribution in terms of money and ideas would be of tremendous value. Any penny that you would contribute for this cause would give your satisfaction higher than spend for any other means. The Regional Ismaili Council of Hunza has oppend an account number for specificaly this cause, where you could contritbute your donations which is as below:

Attabad Rielf Fund: Account No. 02011712543, Soneri Bank, Aliabad, Hunza, Pakistan.

Photo courtesy: PT

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