LANDI KOTAL: A tribal grand jirga and major political parties belonging to Babe Khyber in Khyber tribal district have joined hunger strike staged by Khasadar and Levies forces that entered its 14th day on Sunday.
Meanwhile, all the Levies and Khasadar forces have announced they will boycott polio campaigns across the seven districts while the grand jirga and all political parties have also announced their support.
A delegation of the jirga led by Malik Marjan of Waziristan, accompanied by Malik Fayyaz of Mohmand, Nalik Israr Kuki Khel, Malik Faizullah Jan and Malik Waris Khan of Khyber Agency participated in Sunday’s sit-in.
Talking to The Express Tribune Marjan said, “We support the cause of the Levies and Khasadar forces and demand the adviser to the CM on affairs of the merged districts to look into the case sympathetically.”
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Similarly, Khasadar and Levies forces Vice Chairman Mazhar Afridi told The Express Tribune, “Our hunger strike has entered into its second week, but still elected representatives of the federal and provincial governments haven’t visited us.”
Afridi further said they had agreed on a 22-point charter of demands with related officers to ensure job security for both Khasadar and Levies forces through legislation, but have since been betrayed.
“As we see no headway into the issue of securing our jobs, we will boycott polio campaigns and those who cooperate or administer polio drops in their areas, would be penalised with Rs5 million,” he added.
Khasadar and Levies personnel deployed in the recently merged tribal districts decided to continue their opposition to the extension in The Police Act and staged hunger strikes in district Jamrud, pressuring the government to accept their demands.