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Political crisis deepens in PoK’s Gilgit-Baltistan – World News Network

By Amjad Ayub Mirza
Gilgit-Baltistan [PoK], July 7 (ANI): Hundreds of policemen had this Monday (July 3) encircled the assembly building in the Gilgit city in Pakistan-occupied Gilgit-Baltistan (PoGB) and in less than half an hour cordoned it off.
A new chief minister was supposed to be elected on the same day when the police requisitioned the assembly building on the orders of the court, according to Amjad Ayub Mirza, an author and a human rights activist from Mirpur in PoK. He currently lives in exile in the United Kingdom.
In less than half an hour the police had encircled the assembly building and cordoned it off forcing staff members, members of the assembly and the journalists present to leave the premises and then the police sealed the entrance.
Meanwhile, on July 4, the appellate court of PoGB gave its verdict on an ongoing case regarding the nature of the law degree of the chief minister of PoGB. The verdict said that the law degree was fake and therefore Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf member and CM Khalid Khurshid was disqualified as both a member of the house as well as his office.
On April 11, the prime minister of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK), Tanveer Ilyas, was called to attend the high court in the capital city of Muzafarabad.
A full bench was awaiting him and when he arrived at the court he was accused of contempt of court for making a remark during a public meeting in which Tanveer Ilyas had said that (a US 15 million Saudi-funded education project that he had managed to secure from Saudi Arabia), was in limbo because the court had a stay order on it.
The court disqualified him for his remarks and his membership of the house and prime minister office was annulled.
Later through manipulation, horse trading and exertion of pressure on the legislative assembly members by the Pakistan government and military establishment, a PTI forward block was set up under the leadership of Chaudhry Anwar ul Haq.
Haq, with the collaboration of the Kashmir chapter of the Pakistan People’s Party and Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz, formed a new coalition government in PoK and got himself ‘elected’ as the new Prime minister.
The same story is now being repeated in PoGB. A ‘Hum Khayal group’ or the ‘Group of Like-minded’ (read forward block) comprising PTI dissidents has been formed by Javed Manwa who was the finance minister in the previous government.
Manwa claims to have the support of at least 10 members of the assembly and has said that ‘a coalition government (in PoGB) is the need of the hour. He claims that for months he was in consultations with other members of the assembly of PTI. He also claims that more members of the assembly will be joining his ‘group’.
Currently, Imran Khan’s PTI is split into three groups in PoGB. Haji Gulbar Khan is leading one group; the second group is under the command of Javed Manwa while the now defunct CM Khalid Khurshid is leading a third.
In both PoK and PoGB, the mechanism of the judicial coup has been applied. A new Chief Minister for PoGB will now be ‘elected’ on July 13.
There is a strong indication that the PoGB chapter of the Pakistan People’s Party and Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz will be accommodated in the new cabinet with ministries being offered as bribes to seduce them into supporting Manwa.
Pakistan’s interference with the political process in both PoJK and PoGB is nothing new. What is mind-bogging is the shameless manner in which the elected sitting executives of the respective occupied territories have been dismissed from their offices using judicial coups.
History tells us that whichever government comes to power in Pakistan they always get the assistance of the Pakistan military establishment to manipulate the election through the above-mentioned tactics of horse trading and exertion of pressure on the legislative assembly.
Due to a lack of political freedom, every election is contested on the basis of tribe affiliation and boot-licking of the local military commander of various army garrisons in PoK.
As the economic crisis grows by the day, the populations of both occupied territories are looking for alternate ways to address their grievances and put forward their demands.
Therefore, whether it is the pensioners associations, government employees, school teachers and health workers or civil society they have all taken to the streets to protest and observe sit-ins.
The anger of the masses is growing by the day and they seemingly have lost hope in the current political system on PoK and PoGB.
Aware of the consequences of such anger, the Pakistan military has allegedly instructed the Tehreek e Labaik Pakistan (section of PoK), a religious cult group based on its adoration of the prophet of Islam, Muhammad, to hold PoK-wide protests against the desecration of the Quran in Sweden.
Meanwhile, the TLP has planned rallies in PoK for July 7 and another rally is due on July 11, which is being organised by the 30,000-strong Azad Kashmir School Teachers Organisation that aims to conduct a long-march toward Muzafarabad to highlight their demands.
Stakes remain high, both in the arena of politics as well as in the field of public discontent.
Only time will tell if the masses of PoK-GB would be able to by-pass religious demagogy and fanaticism and take their struggle to meet its logical end, which in my opinion, would be to seek liberation from Pakistani occupation and re-join mother India, the largest democracy in the world. (ANI)


Disclaimer: This story is auto-generated from a syndicated feed of ANI; only the image & headline may have been reworked by News Services Division of World News Network Inc Ltd and Palghar News and Pune News and World News


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