PoK suffers lack of potable water, electricity amid abundance of natural resources

Muzaffarabad Pakistan-occupied Kashmir

A variety of grievances such as high inflation, arbitrary imposition of taxes, soaring electricity bills and many other issues have been continuously troubling the residents of Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK). 

Residents blame government departments serving under Pakistan’s illegal regime in the region for host of issues such as load shedding, unavailability of safe drinking water and heavy taxation on wheat flour among several other concerns. 

Sardar Abdul Razzaq Khan, President of Traders Association in Muzaffarabad said, “Our demands are 100 per cent reasonable. There is no demand that is not possible for them (PoK government). A total of 3000 Megawatts of electricity is produced in PoK, 400 Megawatts of hydel electricity should be provided to the locals of PoK. The issues of Mirpur division like (Rathoa Haryam) bridge should be resolved and other commitments done by (WAPDA) should be fulfilled.” 

He added, “Likewise issues in Poonch division should also be resolved. In Muzaffarabad Division, Neelam- Jehlum Project was constructed amid a lot of corruption. That corruption should be disclosed, and water bodies and treatment plants should be constructed.” 

Although the resource-rich PoK generates more than enough Megawatts of electricity to address power issues of the region, the general public has to look towards Pakistan to fulfil their basic needs.

For more than 70 years Pakistan has been continuously exploiting the resources of PoK and Gilgit Baltistan. In return the illegally occupied territories received not an iota of benefit. 

Sardar Abdul Razzaq said, “The river (Neelam) has turned into a narrow stream of water. And all the local residents, the secretary of WAPDA (The Pakistan Water & Power Development Authority) from Pakistan has admitted that this has been an overexertion on the public”.

“There is no safe drinking water available in this area now. So I appeal to the local administration, all these local issues must be addressed on an immediate basis and the problems that are arising in the region should be resolved promptly”, said Sardar Abdul Razzaq.

The appeals and the requests from the general public from the local administration go unheard – the discontent in the region has grown steadily, leading to many impassioned protests in the past.

However, the Pakistan and PoK administration has not relented, they are up for facing more such protests in the coming times. 

Copyright Greekcitytimes 2024