BY OUR CORRESPONDENT
GILGIT: Eight years on, residents in Gojal of district Hunza haven’t yet been paid compensation for the land acquired for Karakoram Highway [KKH] expansion.
“This is sheer injustice on the part of the government,” a resident Muhammad Kamran told The Express Tribune on Wednesday.
“The authorities must realize our hardships as have lost our property so long ago.”
The re-alignment and up-gradation of KKH was started from Gojal in 2007 and was completed in the next few years till Raikot bridge in Diamer district. However the people who lost their lands in Gojal section of the KKH haven’t yet been paid and aren’t likely to be paid in the near future too.
According to Kamran, the government committed injustices against the locals right from start of the KKH project. “There is a formality that initially the affectees are consulted before land acquisition but nobody did that in our case.”
Similarly, he said, besides the re-alignment compensation, the government also owes another compensation for the locals for a land acquired before Attabad landslide.
In addition, he said, the issue of land used by G-B Chambers of commerce for transportation of good hasn’t yet been sorted out.
A community elder lambardar Sultan Ayub said the number of families affected by the KKH project were over 150, demanding immediate release of money to the affected.
Ayub said he was part of the initial surveys conducted for land acquisition by government, adding the delay has caused unrest among the residents.
“The award of compensation should be passed as early as possible.”
Assistant commission Gojal, Mir Alam said the work was in progress and compensation would be released after completion of process. “The process of compensation has been sped up and hopefully communities will get their rights soon,” Alam said.
He said teams from government departments measured the land and after finalization of the process, affected families will be compensated as per government laws.