Muzaffarabad/Kotli [Pakistan-occupied Kashmir]: Massive protests have erupted in different places across Pakistan occupied Kashmir(PoK) demanding an end to the exploitation of natural resources by Islamabad.
In Muzaffarabad, the residents hit the streets to demand Pakistan to stop diverting the waters of the Neelum River to Punjab province.
Pakistan is depriving the people of Muzaffarabad from their water lifeline -Neelum River – through an elaborate scheme, which has changed the flow of the freshwater from the mountains to Punjab province and in the process drying up the River even in the middle of the monsoon season.
Protests are taking place all across Muzaffarabad against this latest move by Islamabad to take away even the most basic right from the Kashmiri people who live under its occupation.
The Neelum River passing through Muzaffarabad now appears as a storm water drain filled with sewage waste after the construction of Neelum-Jhelum hydro power project.
A resident who joined the protest said, “Depleting water resources will impact our lives as the river will become dry. The residents will face acute water shortage and everything will be destroyed. We have travelled from Rawalpindi to Muzaffarabad to get this issue resolved. This is very unfortunate”.
A large number of people also joined a massive protest against water shortage. They shouted slogans against WAPDA (Water and Power Development Authority), which generates power from PoK and supply it to Pakistan’s Punjab and other provinces.
In Pakistan occupied Kashmir, the people have been facing hours-long power cuts.