Youth from Gilgit-Baltistan (G-B) on Wednesday held a protest against the recent spate of sectarian violence in Kohistan.
Over a dozen students, from the Student Youth Alliance G-B assembled before the National Press Club and staged a demonstration against the killing of members of Shia passengers in the ambush on Tuesday.
Carrying banners and placards inscribed with anti-government slogans, the protestors condemned the incident and demanded the immediate arrests of the culprits.
Representatives of the Student Youth Alliance criticised the government for what they called “a failure to protect the lives of its citizens”. They condemned the killings and termed the violence a conspiracy to create sectarian tension in G-B.
“The time has now come for the government to take practical steps to protect the lives of its citizens, otherwise students will start countrywide protests,” warned a participant, Kaleemullah.
Student Youth Alliance G-B President Zulfiqar Tatu said that it is unfortunate that terrorists were murdering innocent people, while the government helplessly witnessed the incidents. “The provincial government is completely helpless as it has failed to provide us with any security,” he added.
There was consensus among protesters that hidden forces were behind the incident. They (forces) intend to unnecessarily create a rift between the two sects who have traditionally co-habited peacefully with each other, said a protester.
Published in The Express Tribune, March 1st, 2012.