Home > Uncategorized > Debate on Giligit-Baltistan in the UK House of Lords questions the GBLA Package

Debate on Giligit-Baltistan in the UK House of Lords questions the GBLA Package


(London) April 8: Baroness Emma Nicholson of Winterburne and member of the EU Parliament, who has long been championing the issues of Gilgit-Baltistan, organised a debate to take a fresh view and assess the recent political changes in the region. Abdul Hamid Khan of Balwaristan National Front who lives in exile in Brussels, was one of the three speakers, the other two being Dr Shabir Chaudery representing Kashmir National Party, and Muhammed Sarwar Chief Editor of The Nation.
The debate focused on issues of political legitimacy of the current political set up, challenges of development including lack of public health, education, foreign direct investment and the construction of Diamer Bhasah dam. All the three speakers out-rightly rejected the current political package that aims to integrate the region into the Pakistani federal system.
Talking to the media afterwards Abudl Hamid Said, ”For the last 63 years, no single person has given any statement that we are happy with what Pakistan is doing with us, no. Even Jamat-e- Islami did not agree with what Pakistan is doing there, Jamaat- ula -Islami, being a conservative pro-Pakistan party. That is the situation of our area, that people don’t have any representation. What are the elections, you see, the elections are fraud. Those who were pro-Pakistan, who are in Pakistani parties, they participated in the elections and they were allowed to win. And those nationalists, including our alliance of seven parties, we were not allowed to participate in the elections,”
The other two speakers also expressed their dissatisfaction of over the introduction of the new GBLA package, they termed this kind of lukewarm political reforms as part of the wider political strategy to manoeuvre local public opinion without changing the fundamental status of human rights, and issues of devolving governance powers.
Baroness Nicholson expressed her concern over the chronic denial of human rights in this disputed region, and she pointed out the lack of conditions for human development that negatively impacts quality of the life of the people.
Focusing on the pathetic health service conditions in Gilgit-Baltistan she maintained that ”What do people want? Everybody absolutely everywhere, they have, to survive, access to basic health care. They have to have private health, public health. They have to have food, they have to have shelter, they have to have some education. The people of Gilgit -Baltistan have been deprived of everything I just stated.”

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  1. Nadeem
    April 10, 2010 at 6:20 pm

    The proposed change of status of Pakistan Occupied Gilgit Baltistan
    By Nadeem on 7th April 2010 in a meeting at British House of Lords London (UK)

    The proposed change of status of Pakistan Occupied Gilgit Baltistan and the wider implications for the region and internationally .

    I would like to thank Baroness Emma Nicholson for providing me with the opportunity to elaborate on the De-facto annexation of Gilgit Baltistan done by the government of Pakistan on 29 August 2009,via Gilgit-Baltistan Empowerment and Self Governance Order 2009’ which replaced the earlier ‘Northern Areas’ Legal Framework Order 1994’.

    It is not the first time that the government of Pakistan has imposed unilaterally self governance order 2009 ,and withdrawn from its international, bilateral ,regional and national obligations which she made in united nations security council (UNSC) and bilateral treaties between India-Pakistan and her own constitution of 1973.

    There is only one article 257 of constitution of 1973 Islamic Republic of Pakistan`s related to Jammu Kashmir.

    Article 257 relating to the State of Jammu Kashmir provides as follows:

    “When the people of the State of Jammu and Kashmir decide to accede to Pakistan, the relationship between Pakistan and that State shall be determined in accordance with the wishes of the people of that State.”

    The result of ceasefire between India and Pakistan on 1st January 1949 .The 29′ 814 square miles area of Gilgit Baltistan came under control of Pakistan.

    In October 1962 there was a war between India and China. The peoples Republic of China occupied the area of 8′ 616 square miles in the North Eastern parts of Ladakh, and area of 5’55 square miles South Eastern area of Dam Choke in Ladakh which are the integral parts of state of Jammu Kashmir.

    On 3rd March 1963 Sino- Pakistan Frontier Agreement,The Trans – Karakoram Tract is an area of nearly 2′ 239 square miles that was transferred by a border agreement from the (Ch.M.Aslam) Pakistani administered Northern Areas to Peoples republic of China in 1963 with the proviso (section-6) that the settlement was subject to the final solution of the state of Jammu Kashmir dispute.

    On 29 August 2009,Via ‘Gilgit-Baltistan Empowerment and Self Governance Order 2009 ,the government of Pakistan unilaterally annexed Pakistan occupied Gilgit Baltistan (POGB) as its de-facto fifth province. Pakistan has withdrawn from her international and regional, obligations which she made to comply with the free will of the people of the Pakistan occupied (POK) areas and for the regional peace and security.

    Gilgit-Baltistan Empowerment and Self Governance Order 2009 only proved by the federal cabinet of government of Pakistan and announced by the by the Prime minister and signed by the president of Pakistan as a final authority.

    Proposed de-facto Pakistani fifth province of Pakistan occupied Gilgit Baltistan has no constitutional cover from its own constitution of 1973 and neither does it comply with article 257.

    GB legislative assembly and council have 55 subjects for making laws out of 61.

    The territory of (POGB) shall be proposed under Article 2(f) described territory of Pakistan which is still not approved by Pakistani Parliament (Assembly and Senate) with two third majority.

    The rest of the articles are imposed on POGB are part of 1973 constitution of Pakistan and POGB is historically a part of Jammu Kashmir .

    These are the other articles of 1973 from constitution of Pakistan which do not apply to POGB.

    Article-

    20-Governor shall be appointed by the President of Pakistan.

    54. Summoning and prorogation of Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament).

    55. Voting in Assembly and quorum.

    56. Address by President of Pakistan

    80. Annual Budget Statement.
    81. Expenditure charged upon Federal Consolidated Fund.
    82. Procedure relating to Annual Budget Statement.

    83. Authentication of schedule of authorised expenditure.

    87. Secretariats of Majlis-e-Shoora (Parliament).

    Mr Qumar Zaman Kaira a Punjabi MNA and KANA minister turned into an ad hoc Governor of POGB with all authority and administrative powers and recent appointment of a new Governor of Gilgit Baltistan ( POGB), Dr,Shama Khalid ,both do not comply with the Jammu Kashmir state subject definition of 20th April 1927.

    According to the self governance order 2009 Legislative assembly have directly elected 24 members, besides six women and three technocrats seats.

    Under this so-called Self Governance Order 2009 a drama was staged in the name of the Legislative Assembly election to misguide the international community, whereas the indigenous political groups and state subject holders are banned freely to move and participate in these elections.

    All of Pakistani political parties show their strength to the local population with the help of Pakistani military and civilian administration and defeated them with their colonial attitude.

    The only political alliance of Indigenous local people is Gilgit Baltistan Democratic Alliance (GBDA) who were ousted from the election by force,registered forge cases against its leadership,deported them and put them behind the bars. Every ruling party in Islamabad is always the winner in POGB, because of its control on all administrative and financial sources from Islamabad Pakistan. The inter services intelligence ( ISI) and other secret military agencies have a final authority on all state affairs, and their authority is above the law in the name of national security.

    To understand the massive rigging in the election ,Opposition leader Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan while speaking on a point of order said PPP had won but Pakistan and democracy had been defeated in Gilgit-Baltistan polls. Government indulged in massive rigging in the elections, Government made a mockery of charter of democracy and people of Gilgit and Baltistan, he added. Baitul Mal was misused mercilessly during the polls,he charged. Opposition has staged token walk out from National Assembly.

    Marvi Memon a PML,MNA and election in-charge of POGB. Issued a report on November 14, 2009 ,Title-GB elections rigging.

    A- Pre-poll rigging, issued a 10 point pre-poll rigging evidence.

    B- Poll day rigging,issued a 23 point poll day rigging evidence.

    C- 23 observations of The Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN). Exposed the credibility of a free and fair election in 2009.

    The areas of POGB are full of wealth and natural resources and Pakistani military and civil authorities don’t want to empower local people because of its rich resources.

    As an example Pakistan is one of the fourth largest gemstone exporters in the world, apart from Swat valley the remaining areas of gemstone mining are all in the POGB & POK.

    Pakistan is building a Diameer Basha Dam to cover her electricity shortfall in POGB even local people are opposing it and it has capacity to generate electricity approximately 4,500 MW.

    According to the Newspaper The Nation 22th October 1991,The Pakistani federal minister of water and power Jam Yousaf stated on the floor of the Pakistan national assembly that, apart from Basha Dam Government of Pakistan will going to build 15 new Dams in the State of Jammu Kashmir, 9 of them are in the Pakistan Occupied Gilgit Baltistan:

    1-Bonji Dam ,

    2-Rakhoot Dam,

    3-yolorelbo Dam,

    4-Sakrdoo Dam,

    5-Yogo Dam,

    6-Tungas Dam,

    7-Kanch Dam,

    8-Sherquila Dam,

    9-Satpara Dam,

    Six of the Dams are in the Azad Kashmir (Pakistan Occupied Kashmir -POK).

    The UNCIP unanimously adopted this Resolution on 13-August-1948.
    Resolves to submit simultaneously to the Governments of India and Pakistan.
    Members of the Commission: Argentina. Belgium, Columbia, Czechoslovakia and U.S.A.

    Part III of the above mentioned resolution.

    The Government of India and the Government of Pakistan reaffirm their wish that the future status of the State of Jammu Kashmir shall be determined in accordance with the will of the people and to that end, upon acceptance of the Truce Agreement both Governments agree to enter into consultations with the Commission to determine fair and equitable conditions whereby such free expression will be assured.

    On the basis of historical, legal and constitutional facts we out-rightly reject Pakistani constitutional and colonial aggression on Gilgit-Baltistan in the name of Empowerment and Self-governance Order, 2009.

    We demand to the Government of Pakistan to fulfil its obligations towards its occupied areas of POGB and POK. Which she signed in UNCIP resolutions and bilateral treaties with India.

    We demand that Pakistan must stop creating a new de-facto fifth Pakistani province of GB because this creation of a new province is an act of occupation of the part of Jammu Kashmir which Pakistan controls since 1947.

    This creation of new province is against the wishes and free will of masses and is against all political norms, moral values and legal obligations.

    Pakistan’s act is contradictory for the Kashmiries and International community. Pakistan fails to perform its trust obligations towards the people of its occupied areas.

    We believe that historically Gigit-Baltistan is an integral part of the state of Jammu Kashmir.

    We demand from Pakistan to withdraw her armed forces and civil servants from parts of Jammu Kashmir under her occupation (POGB-POK ).

    We urge the international community to stop Pakistan exploiting our natural resources and stop building of new dams in the areas of Kashmir because of its disputed nature.

    We also demand the return of our million’s of dollars foreign exchange collected by Pakistan and handing over by the control of Mangla Dam to the government of Pakistani Occupied Kashmir.

    The people of Jammu Kashmir will not accept any forced geographical division of their motherland Jammu Kashmir.

    Both India and Pakistan are nuclear states and they have fought wars (including proxy war) against each other in the past. They have spent millions of dollars on military purposes which effects the daily life of common people, those that are living below the poverty line and are millions in number. It’s good for the both countries to solve their conflicts through peaceful means, and deliver basic needs of life to their own people rather than spending huge money for military purposes.
    Only a Secular, Unified and Independent Kashmir is the way forward for the regional development, security and peace in South East Asia and world at large.

    Thank you,

    Nadeem Aslam Advocate,

    E-mail- nadeemjknia@aol.com

    General Secretary Jammu Kashmir National Independence Alliance (JKNIA).

    Spokesperson,International Council Jammu Kashmir National Awami Party (IC JKNAP).

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