KURRAM: As the death toll from a bloody dispute in the Kurram tribal district reached 11 with two more deaths on Tuesday, the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government requested the federal government to deploy additional military and paramilitary troops under Article 245 to put an end to the bloody conflict.

The clash, which started on July 7 between inhabitants of Dandar Sehra and Boshehra, has left more than 70 people injured, with both sides using heavy and automatic weapons to inflict maximum casualties.

The fighting has created fear in the area as well as a shortage of essential goods, including edibles, due to road blockades.

On Tuesday, clashes continued in Pewar, Gido, Bali­shkhel, Khar Killay, Sadda, Para Chamkani, Muqbal, and Kunj Alizai areas.

Death toll rises to 11; Kundi calls on PM to intervene

Dr Qaiser Abbas of the Parachinar District Headquarters Hospital told Dawn that Tuesday’s clashes left two people dead and 25 injured. He said that the injured were shifted to the DHQ Parachinar and THQ Sadda. Three of the critical injured were shifted to Peshawar.

PM asked to intervene

Separately, PPP leader Faisal Karim Kundi called on Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif to intervene and end the conflict that is raging in the tribal district before it leads to a wider breakdown of law and order.

In a statement on Tues­day, the former deputy spe­a­ker of the National Asse­m­bly said that the PM should immediately call a jirga to address this issue before Muharram, adding that a land dispute between two tribes was being labelled as a sectarian issue, which was not true.

KP govt jirga

In its press statement, KP Home and Tribal Affairs Department said that a 30-member jirga had gone to Kurram to bring an end to hostilities stemming from “land disputes”.

The jirga, under the supervision of the deputy commissioner, arrived in Kurram on Tuesday evening and held meetings with elders in Sadda and Para­chinar to end the conflict.

According to the department, every effort was made to resolve the “longstanding land disputes in Kurram and to normalise the situation well before the July 7 clash bet­ween inhabitants of Dandar Sehra and Boshehra”.

“There are eight different land disputes going on in central, lower and upper areas of Kurram district, most of which date back to pre-independence time,” it said.

On July 7, violence flared as inhabitants of Dandar Sehra and Boshehra over a construction in Dandar Sehra in Upper Kurrum engaged in a skirmish, resulting in the death of seven people and injuries to 37 others.

The department added that the district administration, with the support of police and prominent elders, started negotiations with both parties and law enforcers were deployed to normalise the situation. Sec­tion 144, which prohibits gatherings of more than four people, was also employed to curb the violence.

Recently, the KP government notified a high-level revenue commission for the settlement of measured or unmeasured land in Kurram. The land commission along with elders of the area visited Kurram on June 6, 2023, and June 20 to settle the matter. Another visit is planned for this week, it added.

The press note claimed that several reports were received that “some miscreants are giving it [a] colour of sectarian clash and propagating false news on social media”. “Strict monitoring of social media is in place and all such miscreants will be dealt [with] severely,” it warned.

Repeated ceasefire violations

On the other hand, Kurram DC Saiful Islam Shah said that they were working with local elders to end the hostilities. The official said there were repeated ceasefire violations in various areas.

Similarly, Federal Minister for Overseas Pakistanis Sajid Turi told Dawn that repeated ceasefire violations were hindering normalcy. He asked the federal and provincial governments to take steps to control law and order. Besides, he also asked for action against those repeatedly violating the ceasefire.

The ongoing clashes have led to the closure of roads, causing a shortage of edibles, medicines and fuel. Tanveer Hussain, a resident, told Dawn that they were living in a state of fear.

“On the one hand, we are faced with bangs of exploding rockets, while on the other hand, we are facing a dearth of food and medicines due to roads closure,” he added. Mr Hussain urged the authorities to immediately put an end to the hostilities.

Published in Dawn, July 12th, 2023

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