Hunza News

Future of Kalasha people, a big question mark?

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Mother of late Noor Ahmad

Mother of late Noor Ahmad mourning, photo taken once the dead bodies were reaching the temple Jestak Hand at Kraka’

The ancient living civilization, culture and unique traditions of Kalasha community are on the verge of extinction for last many years. But the increasing incidents in recent few years have been mark a big question on the role of law enforcement agencies in the District Chitral. Kalasha people are counting around 4100 living in three v-shaped valleys of District Chitral (Mumuret, Rukmu and Biriu). They are living here since 327 B.C and are the original inhabitant of Chitral area. The small community was once ruled Chitral to Asmar in Afghanistan.


Mayor a Kalasha kid watching her closed relative shoot by militants, dead bodies taking inside the Jestak Hand

It was 29 July around 4-5 A.M when a group of militants attacked on shepherds at Bahol’aret high pasture and shoot two shepherds on the spot. Noor Ahmad was shoot on the face at the right hand-side while his fellow shepherd Khush Wali was shoot at chest and stomach. When the militants attacked, there were four shepherds, two have been successfully escaped, interestingly the escaped shepherds are belonging to converted family and they were safe, isn’t it seems something wrong? Why Kalasha shepherds and livestock were only targeted? On the same day militants snatched away hundreds of goats at high pasture in Biriu valley, but shepherds remained safe. It doesn’t stops here, two more valleys Rukmu and Acu’hagha were also under threat and shepherd were informed presence of militants in aforesaid areas as well.


There were news about movement of militants on the border since last month, and the last week was given clear threat to the community and large number of security forces were deployed, but where they were deployed? A local shepherd informed all security forces just three days prior to the attacked, why the Pak territory was given free zone for the militants’ movement and living there? Who are responsible for security laps? There wasn’t single resistances from security forces, isn’t they failed to manage the border security matters? The attacked happened just two kilometres away from security check post.


Lady Health visitor and proud daughter of Kalasha people, couldn’t watch the brutal murder of her relatives and cry out.

The same place was targeted in 2012, one shepherd was slaughtered and seven hundreds goats including sheep were snatched away and taken to other side of the border Nuristan.


Daughter and sister of late Noor Ahmad and closed relatives of late Khush Wali in mourning inside the temple

The Shawal pass was also used to kidnap the Greek-volunteer in 2009, he was kidnapped from Kalasha Dur that is located at the centre of Mumuret valley, and his police guard was killed, and there wasn’t any success story to say about it. Militants were taken him through the villages and front of the security checkpoints, but there was no order to tackle the militants. He was kept in Nuristan for seven months and then after giving ransoms he was released.

Same happened this time no orders from high-ups? Because there was a threat to the helpless tiny minority and there wasn’t any risk to the so called VVIPS!!! Where is the national action plan when it comes to the most peaceful and beautiful part of the country?

Every time the Kalasha people hear that all security forces are there for their protections, when the time comes it goes opposite, and left the community disappointed in every incident.

On 16 June 2016 a clash on Kalasha people left many people injured, the mobs created uncertain situation in Mumuret valley, although it was minor issue for the majority people living in the area. The incident increased disparities among the Kalasha People. After days passed there wasn’t any action and FIR on the mob that was caused clashes. Every time Kalasha people had been informed about engagement of third party after clash, isn’t it clear from the recent attacked on the community? Now there shouldn’t be any confusion about the third party rumours.

Today was the saddest day for the Kalasha people of Chitral, KP Pakistan. As first time there was not full flagged funeral rituals and dead bodies were just kept inside the temple for a night and women and men were mourned and buried without completing the traditions earlier this morning. When asked from elders they said, it happened because we are helpless and we felt only way to record our peaceful protest. Stopping rituals and beating drums…what message it convey? Why they were thought to not perform certain rituals? Isn’t it fears of another attack?

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