Photo Credit: Rehmat Jabbar
Dozens of people in Gojal Valley protested against what they said was “government negligence” in payments of compensation to the people affected by the KKH improvement project.
The protestors blocked the KKH in Gulmit for several hours, demanding immediate payment of compensation for their land used for expansion, and realignment of the highway and properties damaged during the highway improvement project.
The protestors also blasted the NHA for damages to properties around the KKH and not taking concerns of locals into account during the project’s work. Angry protestors said their pleas for reconstructing the damaged water channels were ignored and link roads to their properties were permanently cut off as a result of the project.
It is worth mentioning here that the National Highway Authority has failed so far in compensating the people of the disaster-hit Gojal Valley despite the passage of more than eight years since the project’s start.
Earlier, the Deputy Commissioner Hunza-Nagar Mr. Imran Ali Sultan said that the NHA was in the process of passing land compensation for the KKH affectees of Gojal Valley.
It is pertinent to mention here that an amount of Rs. 3,20,98,736 was passed in January as land compensation to be distributed among the KKH improvement project affectees of Nasirabad, Hunza, while the affectees of Aliabad and surrounding areas recently received compensation cheques.
The protestors said the NHA has ignored Gojal in compensation payments despite their being most deserving as the valley was severely affected by the Attabad landslide disaster.