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Villagers in North Eastern Pakistan Protest About the Poor State of Repair of an Important Local Road
2008-05-21

On Sunday 4th May 2008, hundreds of villagers in the Province of Punjab, North Eastern Pakistan, held a peaceful demonstration to demand the reconstruction and repair of the Kahuta-Karot Road.

Protestors, including women and school children, gathered at the villages of Karot, Jhandi and Dupri; they carried placards demanding that the Provincial and Federal Governments release the necessary funds to complete the reconstruction, widening and repair work that is urgently needed to the dilapidated Kahuta-Karot Road.

The Kahuta-Karot Road was first constructed twenty years ago and since then no repair work has been carried out to it.  It is estimated that four thousand vehicles use the road each day and also that it is used by around half the population of both Rwalpindi District, Punjab Province and the independent state of Azad Jammu Kashmir.

Local people claim that it has become very dangerous to travel on the road in recent years and that sick people, being transferred to Kahuta or Rwalpindi for treatment, are particularly at risk due to the state of the road.  It is also claimed that heavy congestion experienced on the road impacts on other members of the community, for example students, whose study time is eroded due to unnecessarily long journeys to college.

Widening and improvement work to the Kahuta-Karot Road was approved in December 2007 by the Punjab’s Caretaker Minister for Communication and Works, Mubasher Lugmen.  However, work that was started, was halted when elections took place in February 2008, leading to allegations that commencement of improvement works was merely a political move to gain votes.

Protestors warned that if their demand for reconstruction works to recommence are not met within one month, they will protest in front of Parliament House, Islamabad.

Source Article:  http://www.thenews.com.pk/daily_detail.asp?id=110769

c/o Shehersaaz http://ifrtd.gn.apc.org/new/nfgs/p_stan01.php 

 


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