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The Study of Karoonjhar Hills

The double bench of Sindh High Court in Hyderabad, comprising Justice Salahuddin Panhwar and Justice Mr Amjad Ali Sahito ordered on Friday directed chief secretary Sindh to form a committee of the experts under the chairmanship of secretary culture and tourism of Sindh government to conduct the study of Karoonjhar hills to so that site may b hereditary site according to two existing acts as per pleas of the petitioners.

The urgent petition was filed by three Thari activists including Alllah Rakhio Khoso, Teerath Jhangi and Advocate Fakeer Munwar Sagir through their lawyer Advocate Ghulam Mustafa Hingorjo. Advocate Hingorjo argued that respondents were involved in illegal extraction of precious granite stones from points of Karoonjhar hills, and excavating and removing valuable minerals. He said the respondent officers were not taking actions against such illegal activities despite the orders passed by the double bench in the same court in November 2019 on his petition.

The petitioners in their applications requested the Honorable Court to order the complete ban on the ongoing extraction of the granite stones from various points of Karoonjhar hills and the stern actions against those, who were violating the previous court orders without any let or check by the concerned officials. ” At the juncture the petitioners contend that Karoonjhar mountain located in Nagarparkar taluka of Tharparkar district which are about 100/110 feet high and spreading over 30 kilometres , are not only cultural traditional, religious as well as are unique in features and shape but also have an ancient history in the desert district” said an order and added that since the province of Sindh and Federation have not undertaken any study of this historical sites and even geological department has failed to examine these mountains. “

It is contented that these mountains with very different clay and minerals can be declared as natural heritage, even UNESCO can be invited to examine such mountains through their experts, the order said. ” We would take no exception to the point that every single heritage needs to be preserved because it reflects our past Karoonjhar Mountain, by now emerging as one of the places, having its unique beauty and history which attract the people from all corners, particularly in rainy days. Nagarparkar, which such mountains are located, also has a number of religious places which have their own histories.

The holy sites are of the unique touch of an art and themselves are representatives of the past people, who lived there. The order adds that a researcher Mashkoor Fulkaro in his book ‘Sarswati Tahzeeb ain Achhro Thar’ writes that there are 109 hills which comprise the Karoonjhar range with at least 108 holy sites. ” Such a reference in our view , is sufficient for taking into account such places as ‘cultural and natural heritage’ . Life is never complete without culture and heritage because it is noes’ identity. ” The excavation /extraction of the granite is also a known fact which needs to be examined by quarter concerned because if the extraction is at the cost of the heritage,then the same needs to be stopped if not even the same needs to be mechanized so as to ensure the maximum benefits to the government.

Both aspects are sufficient to convince that at all the material sites, the quarter concerned in particular and culture and tourism department are required to take notice of such a place. Accordingly, the chief secretary Sindh is hereby directed to constitute a committee within seven days comprising the secretary of culture and tourism department as its chairman and the experts of geological and heritage fields in mountains, its clay and history and shall study these mountains with regard to their unique features culture age, as well as history and if the same are falling within the category of the heritage then shall be declared as heritage and ancient properties under The Ancient Mountains Preservation Act 1904 and Sindh Cultural Heritage (Preservation) Act 1994. ‘This exercise shall be completed within six months however an interim report shall be submitted on a monthly basis.

The order said, it is expected that Sindh government will consider the place enlistment thereof in World Heritage Sites by inviting the experts of UNESCO and shall ensure the sanctity of these heritage sites as claimed by the petitioners “ Since facts of the petition shows hearing of the petition as public interest litigation and it will be conducive to appoint Advocate Sajjad Ahmed Chandio and Mr Ishrat Ali Lohar to act as Amici Curiae ( the friends of the Court)” the order added. The double bench also issued notices to AAG Sindh and other respondents to appear in the court on the next hearing and the bench also ordered to provide the copy of the Order along with with the memo of petition to both parties.

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A Cop Booked on Charges of Double Murder

Mithi police have registered an FIR against the police sub-inspector and his alleged unidentified accomplices. The bodies of Doongar 39 and Babhika Meghwar 20, were found hanging from a ceiling fan in the house of a police cop some six days black in the town. The SSP Tharparkar Hassan Sardar Niazi after showing his reluctance to probe the incident as per demands of the relatives, finally ordered the registration of the FIR after the massive protest by the people from Meghwar community under the leadership of PPP leader Ms Samtra Manjani.

The people staged the sit-in outside the police station for past four days to press police to register the murder FIR against Gul Mohammad Sand and his unknown alleged accomplices The FIR under sections of 302, 376 (2) , 201 and 34 of Pakistan Penal Code was registered against arrested Sand and others unknown . The FIR was registered on the complaint of Dodo Meghwar, the brother of Doongar Meghwar. The complainant in his statement complained that his brother was killed while his sister-in-law was subjected to criminal assault by ASI and other unknown culprits and then their bodies were hanged to make it look like that both jointly committed suicide at the residence of police inspector in old Fakeer locality of the town on night of December 31.

SSP Tharparkar Hassan Sardar Niazi and others on the very first day claimed that both ( Doongar 39 and father of four kids and Babhika 20 unmarried) committed suicide and had refused to register the case. The flat refusal from Mr Niazi i had infatuated the relatives and they took to the streets in Mithi town. The credible sources revealed that PPP chairman Bilawal Bhuto Zardari also took notice and directed chief minister Sindh Sindh Syed Murad Ali Shah to contact IG police Sindh for the registration of the FIR as per the demands of the relatives of the victims.

The PPP lawmakers and leaders including MPA Sher Mohammad Bilalani, Surrendar Valasai, Advocate Veerji Kolhi the aide to chief minister Sindh on human rights Dr Khatoo Mal Jeewan and others also met with chief minister to appraise him of the situations that emerged after the refusal of Mr Niazi to register the FIR. The SSP after the pressure from high-ups not only ordered the registration of an FIR but also suspended SHO Mithi Mohammad Khan Zaur on the charges of mishandling the case. Ms Samtra Manjani and others, who led the protesters, talking to the media persons Wednesday thanked the PPP leadership for taking the notice of their four-day long protest showed their mistrust in the police under Mr Niazi and demanded the high-ups to assign the investigation of the incident to any officer of good reputation from any other district of the province.

She said any move to provide the relief to those nominated in FIR during the police investigation would be resisted by them.

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Politics

Granite Stones Karoonjhar Hills in Tharparkar

The illegal practice of extracting the precious granite stones from the famous Karoonjhar hills in Tharparkar district is still going on unabated and this time reportedly by some contractors directly under the control and command of the Federal government as well as some local influential figures for the construction purposes. The beautiful hills of Karoonjhar near the Indian borders with Pakistan spread over 19 kilometers in the range with the maximum heights of 305 meters have not only attracted the tourists from Pakistan and beyond but also invited the greedy people to mar their beauty for the granite extraction for the past many years.

Karoonjhar hills and the Parkar region are not only famous for the beautiful peacocks but also for the ancient Jain temples and the natural beauty during the monsoon season. The leaders of Karoonjhar Sujag Forum, a body which was formed last year to agitate against the illegal extraction of precious granite stones from the famous Karoonjhar hills as well as the people from different walks of life talking to the media persons on Tuesday again requested the high-ups of both Federal and Sindh governments to take strong notice and stern actions against those involved to save the famous Karoonjhar hills from further damage and destruction.

Allah Rakhio Khoso, Zulfikar Ali Khoso, Ramesh Karoonjhari and others talking to this reporter alleged that the influential builders and contractors in a bid to carry out various development schemes in the region, were again busy extracting granite and gravel from the beds of rivulets and from the hills for the construction purposes near Nagarparkar town and other areas of the Tharparkar district by using heavy machinery in their their illegal practices.

They said that if the contractors and builders were left unbridled by the concerned authorities they would cause massive damage at the various sites of the Karoonjhar hills spread over vast areas. They deplored the fact that the illegal practice recently resumed by the greedy contractors and builders a few weeks back, despite a complete ban on the extraction of stones in the hilly region imposed by Sindh High Court’s Hyderabad circuit bench,, was causing the irreparable damage at various points of the hilly area of Parkar region of Tharparkar . They said that the court passed the orders on a petition filed by one Advocate Ghulam Mustafa Hingorjo, against the illegal practice in 2019.

The court banning the extraction had directed the concerned officials to ensure the protection of all hills of the Parkar region. They said that it was not only contempt of court but also an ugly practice that had marred the beauty of the region. ”The greed to extract China clay from the hilly region of Tharparkar district has already caused massive damage to the natural beauty and the deep drenches which were dug for the extraction of the clay already claimed the lives of the area people” they added. The leaders reminded the PPP leadership as well as the lawmakers from Tharparkar of their promises to save the pebbles of Karoonjhar from more damages and destruction.

They said that after the uproar created by the lovers of Karoonjhar in 2019 when the extraction at various points had picked up the momentum by the greedy contractors in connivance with local influential political figures, number of lawmakers on floor of Sindh Assembly had promised to form the committee to protect and preserve the famous hills. The leaders of the forum as well as nature lovers from across the country have asked the high-ups of Imran Khan-led PTI government to take strong notice of the fresh extraction by some officials and authorities under ‘the control and command of the federal government and order the inquiry into the illegal practice to damage the beautiful hills.

The activists believed that such practices resumed by some powerful people would also badly damage the ecology, environment, the natural habitats of birds and endangered species and the beauty of nature which had attracted the thousands of the people from all over the world to visit the region this year after the bountiful rainfalls.

They said that Karoonjhar over the past few years had become the hub of the tourism adding they underscored the need to further promote tourism at Karoonjhar hills by installing a chairlift at top of the hills and by opening more resorts. “If the ongoing extraction was not stopped in the light of court orders they would once again take to the streets in Tharparkar towns to register their protest against such practices, they warned.

While, the prominent rights activists as well as members of the society from across the country on Tuesday again took to the social media and condemned the fresh extraction by sharing the pictures of various sites from where the stones were being extracted through heavy machinery. They asked the authorities to come into the action to save the beautiful hills.

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Thar and Ayaz by Prof Noor Ahmed Janjhi

The iconic poet Shaikh Ayaz has called Thar as the land of light, tolerance, high human values, insight, wisdom, exemplary interfaith harmony and various other beautiful aspects of the green desert in his poetry. Ayaz has tried to symbolize its natural beauty as a strong thesis for love, peace and human prosperity, this was observed by Prof Noor Ahmed Janjhi during the book launch of his new English book ‘Thar and Ayaz’.

He said that he had authored a new book on the poetry of Shaikh Ayaz with special reference to Thar on the eve of welcoming the new year (2021) by launching a book from the sand dunes of Thar. The writer professor Janjhi during his speech said that Shaikh Ayaz had not only depicted Thar as a land of natural diversity but also as he land of light, wisdom and civility with referring to his couplets from the poetry of Shaikh Ayaz. Shaikh Ayaz has had inspiration from the literary heritage of the world. Shaik but he chose Sindhi for his much fluent expression. However he has composed beautiful Urdu poetry.” he added.

The writer Janjhi said Shaikh Ayaz had started writing from his early childhood. and was an avid reader of world literature, which had influenced his mind and brought changes in his diction of writing both poems and prose and thus rose to firmament of literature as the poet of very high caliber with universal message for mankind for the entire universe . ” He wrote on the different geographical zones of Sindh and envisioned Sindh as a prosperous and peaceful land and he always aspired for the prosperous heartland for which he had to face the trials and tribulations in different regimes during his lifetime ” he added.

Professor Janjhi said that Ayaz had in his poetic work had compared the sand dunes and terrains of Thar with the Iranian carpets because of the change of colours during shifting of sands with the varying directions of the winds. He elaborated the process and contents of the book reflecting a research oriented account on Thar and the poetry of the great Sindhi poet. He said it was his fifth book on the poetry of Shaikh Ayaz and first one in English language on the subject. “This book is for students, researchers and academicians, who are interested in the subject but can not go ahead to accomplish their respective efforts because of language barriers and I have tried my best to present both on Thar and the poetry of Mr Shaikh on its beauty, sufferings of the desert dwellers, culture, traditions, customs and various other aspects of Thar.“

He said that Shaikh had mentioned the flora and fauna of Thar and the cultural richness of the area and was very much impressed and fell in love with the unmatched beauty of Thar during his visits to various areas of Thar. He said that Ayaz had not only composed poetry on the beauty of Thar but also depicted the hard life of Tharis during droughts and famines, which had often brought miseries for the people of desert adding he vowed to keep authoring more books on Shaikh Ayaz and on other topics in the time to come.

Syed Akbar Shah, the station director of Radio Pakistan in Mithi, congratulated Mr Janjhi for his envious commitment and the deep dedication for continuity of the writing and launching a book on the poetry of Shaikh Ayaz to welcome the new year for the past five years. ” Shaikh Ayaz introduced new trends in Sindhi poetry and he greatly motivated us to love nature. and toi understand its subtle intricacies” he added. Mr Shah observed that despite the glorious work by professor Janjhi there was still a need to work on other poets including Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai, who had depicted and portrayed the unmatched beauty of Thar desert and immortalized the patriotism of Marvi and hospitality of Tharis.

He highly lauded the writer for producing the quality content in his fresh book on Thar and Shaikh Ayaz, which he termed as a refreshing addition in the literature an authentic information on Thar in the light of poetry of Shaikh Ayaz on Thar. Ustad Karim Faqir, a well-known Thari folk singer, speaking during the event shared his memories about Shaikh Ayaz during a meeting in Karachi and the latter was very much happy to listen to his poetry from the Thari singers and Shaikh Ayaz discussed with him about late Ustad Sadiq Faqir about the black gold of Thar. He appreciated the books on the poetry of Shaikh Ayaz written by Prof Noor Ahmed Janjhi.

He also paid the glowing tribute to late legendary singer Usdat Sadiq Fakeer for his contribution to spread the message of Shaikh Ayaz and the way he had sung his poetry on Thar. Dileep Doshi Lohano, a young poet and novelist moderated the event and shared the overview of the book. He also talked about the beautiful depiction of Thar in the poetry of Shaikh Ayaz. Doshi said that Professor Janjhi over the years had contributed greatly to the literature and with quality books both in Sindhi and English languages with the missionary zeal to provide the quality content to his readers.

Mama Vishan Thari, Ghullam Hussain Khamisani, Aslam Qaimkhani were among others, who spoke and shared their views on the book and the poetry of Shaikh Ayaz on Thar.

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Babita Meghar of Mithi Found Dead

The bodies of a married man and a girl were found hanging in a house in Mithi town on Thursday. The bodies of one Doongar Meghwar 39 and a girl identified as Babita Meghar were found hanging in the fan in a house in Fakkeer locality of the Mithi town.

The area police on the information reached the spot and brought the bodies for the medical examination in Civil Hospital Mithi. Doongar Mehwar and the girl also have also left two separate chits with the notes about their suicides. They stated that they were taking the extreme steps after they got sick of the society. The residents of the locality told media persons that Doongar was working as cook at the residence of a police assistant sub-inspector Gul Mohammad Sand where their bodies were found hanging. Doongar was the father of four kids and was married to the elder sister of Babita.

Sajna Megjhwar, the mother of Babita talking to the journalists claimed that her daughter was kidnapped and then was killed by some suspects along with her son-in-law. She demanded the early arrest of Mr Sand and a thorough police police in the ‘double murder’ case.

No FIR of the incident was lodged with area police when this story was filed. Here it is pertinent to note that according to the official record obtained from the SSP office in Mithi as many as 69 women and 48 males committed suicides in various areas of Tharparkar district in 2020 due to various reasons.

In three incidents men and women jointly committed suicides after they were not allowed by their parents to contract free will marriages.

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Politics

Pir Noor Mohammad Shah Jilani Passed Away

The veteran politician and PPP MNA from Tharparkar district,Pir Noor Mohammad Shah Jilani on Thursday passed away in a private hospital in Karachi. Mr Jilani was tested positive for Covid-19 few weeks back and was under the treatment.He was 70.

Mr Jilani remained three times MNA and four times as the member of Sindh Assembly. He defeated PTI leader and foreign minister Mukhdoom Shah Mehmood Qurashi twice on NA 231 from Tharparkar district .

He first defeated Mr Quraishi first in 2013 and then again during the last general elections in July 2018. He was born on September 15, 1951 in Kamaro Sharif village in Tando Allahyar district and was the head of Jilani Jamat In Sindh.

The PPP MNA will be laid to rest in his ancestral village in Kamaro Sharif. The large number of the followers from Tharparkar, Umerkot, Sanghar, Mirpurkhas, Thatta and other district thronged to Kamaro sharif to attend the funeral prayers of their spiritual leader. The PPP leaders also expressed their deep grief over the death of Mr Jilani.

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Strange Incident in Achhro Thar area of Sanghar

A toy -like explosive device shell which was reportedly found by children in Achhro Thar area of Sanghar district near Indian border went off when some children were playing with it in village Hassan Hingorjo near Khipro town of Sanghar district on late Monday night.

The children had found the bomb from the shrine of one Noor Ali Ali Shah in the desert region some days back and took it as a toy. Kirshan Kolhi 24 died on the spot and Kolhi 7 died on his way to hospital in Hyderabad. The blast created great panic among the residents of the area.

DC Sanghar Imran Khowaja, who reached the village to examine the site talking to this reporter on Tuesday said that two people of the same family were also injured and were under treatment in Civil Hospital in Hyderabad.

The injured included Teja Kolhi and Moujo Kolhi and both are in stable condition” Mr Khowaja.said. He said that the district administration after the blast also sent the team of bomb disposal squad in the village to ascertain the facts.

The area people believe that bombs of different natures and other ammunition were used in the land mines during the war with India in 1965. They said that in the past a number of the children lost their lives when they took these bombs as toys and tried to play with them in Sanhar, Umerkpot and Tharparkar districts.

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Hindu Marriage Bill 2016

MITHI: An awareness seminar on Hindu Marriage Bill 2016 was organized by District Development Association Tharparkar (DDAT), here on Saturday. Briefing the participants about the salient features of the Bill, social leader Krishan Sharma said that there had been no system of marriage registration in Hindu community. “The law would ensure the rights of women and also help to curb the forced conversion,” he added.

Since there was no system of registration of marriages in Hindu community, the women had no right of share in the property and assets because they had no written proof of marriage,” Krishan Sharma said.“Under the Hindu Marriage Law, the marriage certificate could be obtained through the Pandit within 45 days,” he said “The marriage of girls under the age of 18 years would be illegal, and in case any girl is forced for the tie the knot without her consent, the persons responsible, would be liable to be jailed for six months. Moreover, in case of violation of law, a petition could also be filed in the court.”

The Hindu Marriage law also envisages that a woman can approach the court in case of violence or torture by the husband or other persons, and seek divorce. “The woman has also the right to seek divorce in case the husband maintains no contact with her for two years.”Further, a family court shall decide the separation between the wife and husband while they both can reconcile through the court to continue, or terminate the marriage. In case, the husband wants separation, he will be responsible for bearing the living expenses of wife and children.

Krishan Sharma told the participants that there is provision in the law that both the man and woman can remarry after six months of court verdict regarding the separation.“The Hindu widows had no right to marry again, but the new law allows the widowers to get married again. This would resolve many problems often faced by widowed women and their families,” Sharma added. Dr Ashok Bakhatani, Mama Vishan Thari, Khanzadi Kapri, Akash Hamriani and and others also spoke on the occasion and said that there the need of the hour to create more nearness among the people in the backward areas like Tharparkar and Umerkot districts.

They opined that such events would greatly help people understand about such bills and laws on the sensitive issues.

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Sindh Protests Against Tomato Import

The farmers and growers associated with various farmers’ organizations of Sindh came on the roads in large towns of southern and central parts of Sindh on Friday to register their protest against the import of tomatoes , onions and other products from Iran and other countries. and the leaders requested the Imran Khan led-PTI government to stop importing tomatoes from Iran, They said that crops of tomatoes in various districts of the southern and central parts of Sindh were ready to cater to the needs of the consumers in most parts of the country.

The protest demonstrations were held by the farmers and growers in all big and small towns in Hyderabad city and in all the big and small towns of Badin, Mirpurkhas, Tando Mohammad Khan,Sujawal, Thatta and some towns of Tharparkar districts on Friday. to press the federal government to stop such practices which were harming the agriculture sector of the province. The big protest demonstration was held in Hyderabad where the leaders of various political parties, activists, members of the civil society joined them and pressed the government to mend its ways and stop exploiting the farming community of Sindh.

The leaders of the protesting farmers and growers said that crops cultivated by farmers and growers in Badin, Mirpurkhas, Thatta, Sujawal, Tando Mohammad Khan. Tando Allahyar, Hyderabad, Matyari Sanghar and other districts of the province ,was now being marketed by the producers as per the need of the markets and hoped that the produce of the tomatoes was now enough to cater to requirements in Lahore, Rawalpindi, Islamabad Faisalabad , Multan and other markets of Punjab. ” It is the high time to press federal government to stop importing the crop from Iran” they added and said if the practice was not stopped the farming community of the province would sustain huge losses of their yields, as according to them, rate of the crop was dropping with each passing day as the produce from the farms was on the steep rise with the advent of harsh winters, the season which favours much for the growth of the crop in lower and central parts of Sindh.

The farmers during their protests deplored the fact governments over the years had never bothered to devise farmers’-friendly policies both in export in the import of their crops adding they underscored the need to make the concerted efforts to provide the relief to farmers of the country through the sophisticated mechanism.“ The farming community should not mete out the step motherly treatment in the wake of the vagaries of climate change” the farmers added. . They said that the ill-conceived policies of the rulers had created unrest and uncertainty among the agricultural producers and cultivars across the country despite the country was very much dependent on that sector. They said that the farmers after the flooding during the monsoon season this year preferred to cultivate the crop in thousands of the acres in various districts which had become mature now and its produce was now being marketed in all big markets of Sindh from where it was being purchased by the dealers from Punjab and KPK and other parts of the country. ” There is no need now to import tomatoes and onions from Iran and the practice was not stopped within the next few weeks.

It would inflict huge losses to the farming community of Sindh and put extra burden on the dealers from other provinces. Pir Fayyaz Hussain Rashdi, Azizullah Dero, Khalil Ahmed Bhurgari, Mir Noor Ahmed Talpur, Abdul Ghafoor Chandio, Arbab Zulfikar Ali and other leaders of the various organizations talking to this reporter warned the federal government of the dire consequences if their demands were not met at the earliest. They farmers in various towns of Sindh protested peacefully to divert the attention of rulers towards their genuine demands and hoped that Prime Minister Imran Khan would himself take notice of their wide protests else they warned to widen the scope of their protests by giving the shutdown calls in towns across the region.

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Injustice by Coal Companies in Thar Coal Fields

MITHI: The people from different communities from various areas of Thar have voiced their serious concerns against the grave injustices being committed to them by coal companies in Thar Coalfields during a “peoples’ tribunal or the conference of the villagers (Rajouni Kath)”.

The event was organized by Pakistan Fisherfolk Forum village Warwai, block-1 near Islamkot town on Wednesday. The tribunal aimed to initiate its deliberations in Thar where communities-in-struggle have been resisting the creation of toxic zones on their lands due to massive coal extraction and other related activities by companies. The PFF chairman Mohammad Ali Shah, Aslam Mallah, Muhammad Mallah, Sajan Shaikh, Sanaullah Rahimoon, Faiz Mohammad Rahimoon, Mohammad Amin Rahimoon ,Syed Bhooral Shah, Mohammad Saleem Halepoto, Azizullah Halepoto and others addressed the tribunal.

A large number of civil society representatives, affected villagers and media persons also attended the tribunal meeting. During the meeting a theater was also presented over the worsening condition of Tharis while Thari songs were also sung. Mr Shah said that it was the second tribunal of its kind.and such events would be held in all concerned blocks in Thar, whereas, an indictment would be drafted identifying the core concerns and issues , providing witness and testimony. He said that there should be an end to the greed unlimited for the coal reserves at the cost of the destruction and devastation of the environment and ecology of the rain-dependent arid zone of the country.

Mr Shah and other speakers said that the tribunal meeting ( Rajouni Kath) was the way towards creating the sense of the ownership of their lands, grazing lands , graveyards and their historical sites. ” It is our history, in which we come together and speak to conflict – to judge. In building this bridge to our pasts and our futures we reclaim the community tribunal from those of power, to and for, the people” they added. “Typically People’s tribunals have been used by communities in struggle when the sense that formal/dominant legal processes have failed, and will continue to fail.” they said.

They maintained that failure of law came in many forms: that the forum did not recognize the original violation as violence or that the forum failed to provide corrective measures by the companies engaged in the coal mining in the vast area of Tharparkar district. . ” tribunals or the council of the elders of the local people have a long and rich history from across the world, from the Bertrand Russell Tribunal on Vietnam, the World Tribunal on Iraq, to the numerous tribunals (forty-six) organised by the Permanent People’s Tribunal – on fracking and climate change, on migration, on Canadian mining internationally, on workers rights etc.” They added. ‘By establishing a people’s tribunal process in Pakistan, it is envisaged that the full range of activities on coal can be brought into conversation with each other under its auspices. They said.

The speakers deplored the fact that the vast area had already been affected due to massive extraction and the environment and ecology of the area was also damaged beyond any repair. “Driven by the communities-of-struggle in Thar region it aims to bring together the numerous communities opposing coal: from those living in the shadows of coal power plants and coal importation facilities; communities who have opposed coal for its impact on global climate; the public health community who are witness to the health impact of coal; environmental activist communities working to highlight the impacts of coal on the environment, in contexts of global warming; lawyers working to provide stronger reviews upon the coal sector and enhanced environmental protections; the renewable industries; wider civil society, journalists and academics engaged in understanding fossil fuels in Pakistan’ added the participant of the event.

The affected people of Warwai, Lanjo and other villages of Block-1, speaking on the occasion deplored that the company had made agreements with them that there would be no fences around the village, but now not only fence was being erected but the villagers were also being harassed. The company people were blaming them for stealing diesel and other company stuff. They said that due to violation of the agreements by the mining firms they were facing serious stress. They said that the company had not provided compensation to survey grazing lands (pastures) and trees to them. The residents of the affected villages deplored that the company had violated the agreements and was harassing them with the support of the police, their ways and ways of their livestock were being closed. They demanded justice and announced that they would not vacate their homes and lands.

They appealed to the lawmakers to help them in that regard. They pledged to continue the peaceful protest but warned if the officials of the companies continued to harass them; the company and the administration would be responsible for any unwanted incident in the peaceful region of the country.

“Thar coal companies have also been harassing and displaced people of the union councils of Khari Ghulam Shah and Thario Halepoto, who were even not provided with the compensation of their lands and other required facilities acquired by the coal companies for the coal extraction ” they added

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