Chilas (INP):People in Gilgit-Baltistan have once taken to the streets after failure of the government to resolve the issue of withdrawal of wheat subsidy which resulted in increase of Rs3 per kilogram in the price of wheat flour.
Thousands of people marched to the Karakoram Highway in Chilas and blocked the road on Saturday. There was complete strike in Chilas, Ghizer and other parts of Gilgit-Baltistan where demonstrators raised vociferous slogans against the chief minister.
The GB government had sought time from the leaders of the protest movement till 25th of February at the beginning of this month when people started agitation against withdrawal of subsidy on wheat. The chief minister and the ministers repeatedly stated later that thee was no increase in the price of wheat and the increase of Rs3 per kg was only due to transportation cost but the people refused to agree to this contention.
Addressing the protestors at Chilas, MQM’s Haji Abdul Aziz, Haji Sher Ghazi, Habibur Rehman, PML-N Diamer’s President Haji Abdul Waheed, student leader Umer Farooq and others said they would not accept withdrawal of wheat subsidy to Gilgit-Baltistan. They demanded that the government must check its wasteful expenditure and not put additional burden on the poor people of the region.
Meanwhile Pakistan Muslim League- Nawaz (PML-N) supporters on Saturday protested against vote rigging in NA-148 constituency here. According to the reports, the protest begin when PML-N workers witnessed incomplete voter-lists at polling station no. 98 and also a polling agent forcing voters to cast their votes for PPP at polling station102.
Voting process at both polling stations was brought to halt for a while amid protests. However, PPP candidate Ali Mussa Gilani rejected the rigging allegations. In NA-148, PPP has fielded Ali Musa Gilani against Abdul Ghaffar Dogar of PML-N and the seat was vacated by Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi after he joined PTI.