History of Gilgit-Baltistan is one among few unique histories in thenations of the world we are living. After the courageous people ofthese mountain desserts had won their independence from Dogra Raj inOctober 31, 1947, they voluntarily tried to join the Pakistan of Quid- e – Azam. A Pakistan, which was based on two nation’s theory anddestined to become a democratic republic, according to the wishes ofits great founders. However, unfortunately the founder of Pakistandied under mysterious circumstances. Soon after the Quid-e-Azam,Pakistan’s first Prime Minister was brutally assassinated while he wasaddressing with his nation, at the very same place where very recentlyone of Pakistan’s most revered ex-prime minister Benazir Bhutto washeinously killed. From Liaquat Ali Khan to Benazir Bhutto there aremany hidden and open sinister chapters in the history of Pakistan,including separation of a significantly Muslim dominated EastPakistan, political murder of Z.Bhutto, Zia’s marshal law and all thelatest incidents. All these cases of corruption, murder and breachingconstitution are not big deals in Pakistan, it seems. If people ofGilgit-Baltistan could have perceived such a deceptive trajectory ofPakistan, from the ways of the founding fathers, they would never havemade the mistake of trying to affiliate themselves with Pakistan, onrational grounds.Second important issue is the brutal treatment of Gilgit-Baltistan bythe Pakistani governing bodies. Let’s count what Gilgit-Baltistan hasgained over a long history of six decades. Chronologically the firstone is Karakorum High Way (KKH). But why did Pakistan bothered tobuild KKH? Second is the Diamer Dam. Is it made for the people ofgilgit-baltistan? Ofcourse NOT. Was the karakoram highway for thepeople of Gilgit-Baltistan or for the vested interests of Pakistan,
herself? It does not require lengthy arguments and answer for thisquestion is very simple. Building KKH and Diamer Dam was necessary forPakistan’s survival, because of its dependency on China for all itsstrategic and military support. With all its tall promises USA hasabandoned Pakistan in times of need, such as in its War with Indiankeeping Pakistan with open eyes waiting for Naval Station, followingit Pakistan divided into two. For the survival of the rest, it wasonly China who has graciously extended a helping hand while Pakistanwas facing hostility from its two other immediate neighborsAfghanistan and Indian. Thus, it was a mere compulsion of Pakistan tobuild KKH and people of Gilgit-Baltistan incidentally happened to beon this road. It is all, thanks to be the neighbors of China, thatpeople of Gilgit-Baltistan have got KKH otherwise they may still havebeen suffering, without any link with outer world.Since then it is not possible to count any major projects which havebenefited people of Gilgit-Baltistan. Till recently there was only onedegree college in the area, while knowledge hungry youth ofGilgit-Baltistan were suffering discriminatory approaches in theUniversities of Pakistan. They still do so because the KarakoramInternational University (KIU) is still in its infancy, without anyproper recognition of its academic standards. KIU was making progressunderthe supervision of Dr. Aziz Ali Najam, but due to ridiculous behaviorof some of our immature politicians and business persons, who like tobecome famous by deteriorating the institutions like KIU, he had toleave us. Since the Dr. Najam’s gone, our university is now in thehands of some extremists groups. They want to shape KIU on religiousbasis. Some supporters of Talibanization are now became the caretakers of ouruniversity. The evidence is the expulsion of an Australian Lecturer
Ma’am Jillian Taylor (PhD in Educational Studies) for Speaking Englishthroughout the lecture and wearing trousers. Same case was Dr. Peter,PhD in (International Relations) for asking a grade 1 to getpermission before enter in his room. We demand the governement toappoint a new eligibleVice Chancellor for Karakoram International University Gilgit, sothat this university could make some progress, as our coming generations relyon this.In the entire civilized world there is not a single country where anon-elected person from an alien region controls and heads an electedassembly. But this shameful thing is happening in the Gilgit-Baltistanunder the eyes and noses of the Pakistani governing bodies, where aperson, most often either from Punjab or NWFP heads the electedrepresentatives of Gilgit-Baltistan in the so called Northern AreasLegislative Assembly (NALA). The chairman of NALA (Minister forKashmire and NA affairs) is not answerable at any level to the peopleof Gilgit-Baltistan.There is no lack of resources for the development of Gilgit-Baltistanin the region; one of the abundantly available resources is water thatcould generate much needed electricity not only enough forGilgit-Baltistan rather it could be heavily exported to other regionsas well. But still people of Gilgit-Baltistan consume less than 5Watts Average power per capita. In rest of Pakistan this average is 48and the world average is 297. It is not, in anyways, different fromthe case of Sui gas, which has been used all over Pakistan but not inthe villages closest to Sui. The local Sardars, including Bugti, wereblamed for under development of Baluchistan but what aboutGilgit-Baltistan, there are no Jagirdars (Land Lord) here. Notindividuals but state policies keep the people deprived, alienated andoppressed.Average literacy rate is below 20% in the Gilgit-Baltistan, if we
exclude the 85% literacy rate in Hunza because of AKDN’s initiativethe average literacy rate of Gilgit-Baltistan will further slid down.Female literacy rate is hardly 7%, again a shameful position. The sameworst kind of situation can be seen in all components of the ‘HumanDevelopment Indicators (HID); the standard measurement scale ofdevelopment, introduced by UNDP. People of the area are living in adisgraceful poverty; almost half of 2.5 million inhabitants of Gilgit-Baltistan live below poverty line.Given this state of affairs, after 62 years of its independence andaffiliation with the Islamic Republic, what options are the people ofGilgit-Baltistan left with other than raising voices for independenceand freedom of political, economic and social oppression? Why somepeople want the people of Gilgit-Baltistan suffer humiliation anddisgrace while the world around them is enjoying fruits of prosperity,development and freedom. It would be very much intelligent for peopleof pakistan to think of what Pakistani governing bodies have done withthe people of Gilgit-baltistan over the long 6 decades of its historyother than, humiliating by denying them the basic human rights ofdemocratically elected representatives, honorable food, clothing andhousing, electricity and education. What people of the area have gotin abundance was the sectarian and ethnic bloodshed of their ownpeople, which has brought to the Gilgit-Baltistan by the heinouspowers in order to suppress a united struggle for the rights;otherwise people of Gilgit-Baltistan lived together peacefully andlovingly with each other for centuries. This sectarianism andbloodshed was not transferred fron our forefathers rather this was agift from pakistani establishment and the greatest traitor in thehistory of the world Major Brown to the innocent people ofgilgit-baltistan. The people here are killing each other, they are throwing bombs at each other.
It is nowtime for the third generation of Gilgit-Baltistan to struggle fortheir basic human rights and their freedom. Certainly now thestruggles of the people of Gilgit-Baltistan will never die unheardbecause they have sacrificed a lot to attain the most important powerof pen and ink, which cannot be snatched from them no matter howbrutal, the oppressor might be