The Terrorland Report
Sadia Danish is the new face of Gilgit-Baltistan – The
Ms Sadia Danish, a new hope for the oppressed female population of G-B.
Orphaned Land of Pakistan. She is the Tourism, Sports, Culture and Youth Affairs Adviser to the unconstitutionally elected Chief Minister.
She is also President of the women-wing of the ruling Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) in the region, which has no constitutional rights and no representation in the Pakistani Parliament since 1947.
Yes! Gilgit-Baltistan is really the Orphaned Land of Pakistan!
But, now, it seems that the Orphaned region has got a graceful mother out of the blue! That is what the youth of the region thinks today as the Cyber Generation is fed-up with their uneducated and uncivilized traditional leaders who are actually agents of the secret agencies… the real rulers in the region.
Sadia is young, educated and charismatic. She is changing the image of the region rapidly, and the helpless people of the mountainous region are happy to find a leader-in-the-making! The frustrated people see a ray of hope at the end of the tunnel that after 64 years of independence, finally they may get all constitutional rights and their voice may reach other regions of Pakistan.
Ms Danish is said to be a brave lady. She married a man from a different sect and faced criticism from her community and relatives. Unfortunately, her husband, a political activist, was assassinated. A friend of Sadia’s husband writes about him on the Facebook:
“I knew this man personally, he was a man of courage, zeal and ambitions. we had a very good time a few months before his dreadful assassination. he was a promising leader for this long ignored nation. i often miss him when I look around for a courageous leader in the region. may God bless him thereafter with His utmost kindness. Ameen.”
The murder of her husband was a great tragedy for Ms Danish and her young children. But this iron-lady decided to fight back against biases, hatred and crimes in a democratic way so that there is peace and prosperity in the terrorized region especially the capital city, Gilgit.
Thus she joined practical politics and now the over 2 million people of Gilgit-Baltistan consider her the Cyber Generation leader. Men, women, youth and children everyone is fascinated by this graceful lady. Locals say that when she speaks, uncontrollable crowds become dumb silent!
“Besides the Sunnis, Shias, Ismailis and Noorbakhshias, Ahmedis and Christians also consider a friendly Sadia as a leader of their own, rather a family member,” says an educationist from the region.
Shina, Balti, Burushaski, Wakhi, Khowar, Domaki, Punjabi, Pashtu, Kashmiri and other ethnic groups settled in the region say that a new era of pluralism has started in Gilgit-Baltistan. “It’s according to the demands of the new globalized age!”
Besides her personal leadership qualities, Sadia comes from a very learned family-background of Gilgit. Her father Amin Zia is known as Shakespeare of Shina, one of the main local languages. He is author of many books. So are many other family members.
Therefore, instead of wearing a veil and hesitating to talk to men, Sadia gracefully dresses and leads crowds of men in the society, considered male-dominated, conservative and tribal in nature. This is a great change. “But her confidence should be transferred to every girl from the region,” says a girl student.
Recently, during a polo tournament in a far-flung village of the region, for the first time, women were reportedly allowed to see the matches. However, when a photograph of the event was posted on the internet, it had been blurred so that no participant becomes victim of domestic violence.
A comment on the photo said: “Never had seen this before, great step towards women-empowerment… yes women are also human beings, they also need entertainment.”
“When Sadia Danish walks,” says a political analyst while talking about the changed behavior of men in Gilgit-Baltistan, “men silently and respectfully follow her. This has increased her confidence immensely. She has got the status of a rock-star.
“Despite being compared with Benazir Bhutto (BB), some people call her Margaret Thatcher (former British Prime Minister) and the only Man in the current regional cabinet. However, she herself may like to compare herself with the modern-day Jawari (a legendary woman who ruled Gilgit-Baltistan centuries ago).”
Sadia is said to be an avid user of the internet. Her favorite quotations on her Facebook page reads: “I am convinced that dealing intelligently with the press is of the greatest importance to the success and effectiveness of a humanitarian mission–Alvin Adams.”
Another quotation reads: “The Aim of an Argument … should not be victory, but progress–Joseph Joubert”
She considers herself a “social worker” and her status says: “Social worker busy working to provide basic health care, educational facilities and safe guarding women’s rights in Gilgit-Baltistan. Popularizing BB’s visions among people in general and women in particular.
“Sectarian harmony in GB is atop my priorities and working to my best level to create a conducive socio-politico environment based on re-conciliatory terms. Represent womenfolk of Gilgit-Baltistan on national and international forums and seminars.”
That is why she has been declared a “Ray of Hope” and people believe that she will turn the dreams of the people in reality one day. However, local journalists say that until there are many Sadia Danish-like women in every village and city of the region, development will just remain a dream of the educated lot! “From Khaplu to Ishkoman, and Gojal to Chilas, Sadia Danish should develop a network of young women and men so that the change in the region is real not cosmetic.”
Some people, who have seen all weathers in the region, say that the military establishment is not ready to give Gilgit-Baltistan a Constitutional status as they still consider the region a part of Kashmir. “Johar Ali was an Aligarh-educated national-level leader,” says a retired bureaucrat, “but the secret agencies accused him of incest and there were overnight wall-chalking all over the city (Gilgit) as a result he couldn’t make the region a province despite promises from Z.A. Bhutto. Another promising leader was Saif-ur-Rehman but he was killed in cold-blood.”
A retired officer of the Pakistan Army says that the secret agencies want leaders of their choice from all sides including the Sunnis, Shias, Ismailis and Norbakhsis. “Their bosses use these so-called leaders to create sectarian rift as a part of their divide-and-rule strategy. This is what is happening for the last 64 years.”