By Didar Ali
Work on the new passport office for Diamer district that was planned to become operational in Chilas continues to remain frozen despite the procurement and delivery of office equipments and necessary items, reports said Saturday. The issue has prompted concerns among locals and the business community of Diamer district.
According to reports, concerned authorities have stalled the matter for unknown reasons. Sources said neither have authorities made enough efforts to arrange a building for the passport office, nor have they hired staff members.
The locals and business community of Chilas have demanded that the concerned government officials speed up the process to arrange building for the office and hire staff members.
It’s pertinent to note that the people of Diamer have been traveling to Gilgit and Islamabad to get their Passports; therefore, it’s high time to expedite the work on establishment of a passport center in Chilas city.
Normally, it takes 4 to 5 hours journey to reach Gilgit and almost 17 hours to reach Islamabad to get their work done. Moreover, the poor condition of Karakorum Highway has made travelling miserable, adding to the anxiety of the people.
A handsome percentage of Chilas locals belong to the business community and many of them have to travel to countries like China for affairs pertaining to import and export of goods, and to the Western countries for the businesses like tourism, gems and jewelry.