Hunza News

Civil Society organization’s roles in the holistic development in Past, present and future

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It is important to discuss the civil society organization’s role in the community‘s holistic development in the past, present, and plan for the future. The governance system transformation began after the formation of a faith-based institution called local council at union council level in 1969. It was the first civil society institution within the autocratic system of governance in Hunza. At same time, many people criticized the newly formed institutional system. They were presenting a justification that, if there is a tinny system kingship, what is council for? However, over the passage of time the people understood the sense of it, and people gradually were encompassed by the institution.

In 1974, when the democratic system was imposed on the Hunza state by the federal democratic government, it was a breakthrough to the Hunza people. At that time, the majority of population as undemocratic, but some people realized that, they were oppressed by the autocratic system of governance’s over taxation, social and economic justice. The transformation of autocratic to democratic governance createdan ideological vacuum between democratic and traditionalist for several years, the unacceptance or misunderstanding of ideologies did not let people to deliberate their challenges to make collective strategy to overcome those challenges. The ideological clashes created harder to explore political leadership from the ordinary population, the ideological difference crated opportunity for the royal family to govern over the population for three decades more through democratic system. Unfavorable political environment to the common men caused political leadership deficit in Hunza, therefore, absence of real political leadership is called, and Hunza is as a political orphan. It true or not, it is the decision of readers!

In 1982, Aga Khan Rural Support Program (AKRSP) intervened in the area for the community’s holistic development. It was the second civil society organization’s formation initiative at grassroots level; communities have formed thousands of village- based organizations for their socioeconomic and governance development. Subsequently, organizations are forme village to village and people started to improve their socioeconomic condition. The community- based organizations were run by the local people, but slowly the pace of progress turned to decline due to the absence of human resources, not following the accountability and transparency, while some organization’s financial control went into the corruption people. The innocent community members (men and women) saved millions of rupees in these organizations for their children’s education and health, but in the end, this big amount went into some dishonest pockets and the ordinary community members lost their entire lives financial capital. It created drastic disunity, distrust and disharmony within the community; again, it took us back away from making development and producing leadership for a decade.

Currently, each village in Gojal-Hunahas registered their civil society organizations to serve for the community’s sustainable development. Indeed, it is a credible initiative by social activists, intellectuals and leaders to utilize their natural resources for the community’s development. But it seems that this civil society leadership are not playing their due role in collective development.  The past leadership had strengthened the organizations through saving and planning, but current civil society organizations leadership have different priorities to create conflicts and drag young stars in different conflicts and send them before the honorable courts to spend their financial resources. There are tens of land conflict cases are in the courts of Gojal, they are spending millions of rupees on pay lawyers’ fee and paying thousands of rupees on traveling paying. The communities have conserved their area, but some futile members are engaged in such unproductive activities. The problematic individuals create disharmony, disunity and economic vulnerability among the ordinary people of society.

If such a dishonorable situation remained in the community, then after some year we will have nothing to do, all local resources, leadership and decisions will be the hand of others and will be the watchmen and workers in our own lands.

I speculate follow for Gojal union council civil society organizations!

  • The civil society organizations network will be formed to thank you for the collective development of the area.
  • There are hundreds of extra ordinary students, who are unable to go to higher education institutions due to financial constraints. If they do not get an opportunity to get an education then they are involved in unethical activities, ultimately, the entire society from unethical actions. The civil society organizations should be proactive in losing talent.
  • Formation of a think tank to utilize human capital for a prosperous society.
  • The energy crisis is the biggest issue for educated people, most of the professionals are engaged with online earning, but they do not get electricity to work from their homes. They go to down to cities to avail this facilitation by paying big amount. Communities have the biggest of water resources to install hydroelectricity turbines to generate electricity to fulfil the needs and sell it to commercial areas to earn a reasonable income. Hydroelectricity generation is the biggest business industry in the Gojal.
  • Formation of collective credit society to pull scattered financial capital in one place to facilitate educated youth to establish theirs elf-employment opportunities.
  • Formation of community medical colleges and technical institutions to produce human capital and to fulfil the needs of areas.


Writer is a development practitioner and social activist! please mention it in the end of article 

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