21 Aug 2014
Skardu: 1st annual picnic 2014 at Skardu
Baltistan is one of the most beautiful and scenic places in the extreme north of the landscape of the beloved country. The territory stands surrounded by Pakistan's Province of Khyber Pakhtun-Khwah, Tibetan Territories, China, Kashmir and Indian Occupied Ladakh region and hence the strategic importance of these heights in the international and regional geo-politics can not be over-emphasized, especially after emergence of several strong economies within Asia over last few decades, which have significantly shifted the balance of power in a uni-polar world.
Baltistan division comprises of three districts namely Skardu, Shigar and Ghanchay. The Gilgit Division comprises of 5 districts.
The inhabitants of Gilgit Baltistan fought hard and defeated Indian forces in its war of independence and proclaimed allegiance to Pakistan and completely secceeded the Indian supremacy in 1948. At that time Ladakh was also the part of Gilgit Baltistan.
Its loyal sons have always protected the integrity and honor of our beloved land of Pakistan at the highest war fronts and peaks, an extremely tough terrain, where more than half the battle is negotiating the weather and terrain alone.
These sacrifices are testified by several graves of martyrs in Qatlgaah qabristan, several awards of gallantry were awarded on the national level to the proud sons of Gilgit Baltistan serving in Pakistan`s forces time and again, more recently, in Kargil stand-off and later in anti-terrorism operations countrywide.
However, the takfiri enemies of Pakistan and her global patrons in the international arrogance, who knew about massive potential of the vibrant people of Gilgit baltistan, have always tried in one way or the other to subjugate, suppress and oppress the people of Gilgit Baltistan for showing un-wavering loyalty to the country and saying no to Arab and western imperialism. yazidi dictator Zia in 1988 ,ordered a local military commander to change the demography of area by transporting takfiri wahhabis from different parts of Pakistan to Gilgit Baltistan and the new entrants wreaked havoc in the area ,martyring nearly several hundred shia Muslims in days.
In its issue of May, 1990, "Herald", the monthly journal of the "Dawn" group of publications of Karachi, wrote as follows: In May, 1988, low-intensity political rivalry and sectarian tension ignited into full-scale carnage as thousands of armed tribesmen from outside Gilgit district invaded Gilgit along the Karakoram Highway. Nobody stopped them. They destroyed crops and houses, lynched and burnt people to death in the villages around Gilgit town. The number of dead and injured was put in the hundreds. But numbers alone tell nothing of the savagery of the invading hordes and the chilling impact it has left on these peaceful valleys."
These things have become a permanent scar on the memory of inhabitants and the recurring incidents in which momineen are often asked to come out of bus show identity and martyred in cold blood , don't do any further help in this connection.
Shaheed Foundation Pakistan's Central Committee visited the area and met with Khanwada-e-Shohada-e-Millat and enquired them of their well being. On the occasion of the independence day of Pakistan, a picnic program was organized for the children and families of beloved martyrs in which families from Shigar and Skardu participated.
These two districts make nearly 22,000 sq. km of territory collectively which is nearly four times as big as the mega-polis of Karachi, to put it in perspective. It is a matter of immense pride that the families took the pains of traversing a lot of distance for the program which is so very highly encouraging for the working brothers of Shaheed Foundation Pakistan.
Families have come from Gohri, Wazirabad, Rakewal, Shaghran, Shigri Kalan, Ansari Mohallah, Jaffar Colony, Qamrah, Gangopi and Kachora for participating in picnic.
Shingrila was selected as a picnic point, the beauty of this place attracts a lot of tourists not just from Pakistan but abroad, and rather it is one of the most frequented places and a source of earning foreign exchange. The families were taken in the form of a caravan comprising hices, jeep and car and the green Pakistani flag kept fluttering all the way through as part of Independence Day jubilations and converged near the airport. Refreshments were served in all the vehicles and from there on the journey towards shangrila's Zhoqq area continued through Kachora Pul area where the caravan was welcomed by Maulana Taha Kazmi and juices were served to the participating children and families. Zhoqq hangs at a very elevated height and the entire route is full of picturesque mountains, greenery and orchards. Water falls, swiftly flowing rivers and ravines offered a fascinating and mesmerizing view.
As the caravan reached Zhoqq it was heart-throbbing to see vast plains with peaceful waters reflecting the beauty around in the sunlight offering greenish shades in waters, filling souls and hearts with serenity and divine bliss. Children and families started enjoying the fields straight away as many children were seen waving green Pakistani flags while some quickly teamed up to play football and cricket. Ladies and elderlies preferred to enjoy gossiping by the side of river. Shaheed Foundation Pakistan's working team served tang, refreshment, juices and biscuits to the families.
Nearly at 1230 Azan was called and Zohrain was offered baa jamaat, the prayers were led by Maulaana Syed Taha Kazmi. The prayers were followed by a sumptuous lunch and the entire responsibility to prepare and serve the meal was on the ladies members of the working team.
Followed by lunch a small program was arranged which was hosted by Br.Muzaffar Abbas. Recitation of verses from holy Quran was done by Agha Taha Kazmi. Naat was recited by Br.Meraj and a special balti naat was presented by Akhund Ghulam Muhammad. Special address of Shaheed Agha Ali Naqi's brother Agha Sheikh Ali shed light on the topic of Azmat-e-Shaheed and responsibilities of Khanwada-e-Shaheed. The address was quickly followed by a lovely presentation of tarana by young children of Shaheed Abdul Hameed. Finally Central Committee member addressed the occasion to thank the families of martyrs formally. Ulema-e-Karam also distributed prizes in children on this occasion. It was the first program organized by Shaheed Foundation Pakistan in Baltistan and received deep commendations from the families of martyrs.
From there on the return journey started and on the way, caravan stopped to offer fateha at the grave of Shaheed Ali Naqi. Then a brief stay at the beautiful Shangrila Lake and from there on families took the journey back to their homes accompanied by area members of Shaheed Foundation.
Shaheed Foundation Pakistan's Central Committee gleefully thanks the noble Khanwadgan for giving the program their approval and commendation, accepting the untiring efforts of local working members of the area. We also pay special thank to all the working members whose continued presence and support to the noble cause, helps us reach out to our benefactors in the toughest terrains of the country.
We beseech Imam-e-Zamana [atfs] to pray to Almighty for increasing the taufiqat of every one from our millat here and abroad who in any manner has lent support to the glorious cause of martyrs. We beseech him to pray for us to resiliently traverse the lofted path till we join rank with the beloved martyrs.