Thursday, April 18, 2013
PESHAWAR, April 17: The students of government primary schools in Chitral will learn primers of Khowar, their mother tongue, in the ongoing academic year which started this month. The provincial Elementary and Secondary Education (E&SE) Department has introduced four regional languages – Hindko, Seraiki, Khowar and Kohistani – as compulsory subject in educational institutions from academic year 2013-14. Pashto was introduced as compulsory subject in the Pashtu-speaking areas of the province the previous year. It is for the first time that students of nursery classes would formally learn their respective mother languages in schools. “Under the government’s decision, we have started teaching the mother languages as compulsory subject from nursery classes and these will gradually be introduced in other classes,” E&SE Director Rafiq Khattak said. The decision of introducing mother languages as compulsory subject was taken by the previous Awami National Party-led provincial government in its cabinet meeting on Oct 5, 2011. According to the action plan, Pashto was being introduced as compulsory subject in grade-6 in Pashto speaking districts where it had already been medium of instructions at primary level, while in the remaining Pashto-speaking areas it was introduced from grade-1 to 6th from academic year 2012-13. The teaching of Hindko, Seraiki, Khowar and Kohistani are being started as compulsory subject from class-1 to 7th in areas where these languages are spoken from academic session 2013-14, according to the action plan. When contacted, Textbook Board, Peshawar, chairman Prof Himayatullah Khan told this correspondent that primers of the mother tongues for nursery classes had already been sent to the relevant district education offices as per their demand. He said that primers of Khowar language being spoken as first language in Chitral had been provided to the relevant district education office. Similarly, primers of Hindko have been provided to different districts, including Abbottabad, Haripur, Peshawar and Mansehra, where Hindko is spoken by a section of the population. The primers of Seraiki language spoken in Dera Ismail Khan and Tank have also been provided to the district education offices concerned, while primers of Kohistani language spoken in Kohistan district would be sent to the relevant education office on their demand, he said. Directorate of Curriculum and Teacher Education director Bashir Hussain Shah said that primers of mother tongues had been printed and curriculum of these languages for grade-1 already developed. He said that curricula for rest of the classes would be approved by end of June. “The primers of regional languages are developed with consensus among writers, poets and experts on the relevant languages,” Mr Shah said. Attaullah Khan, an educationist, said that introduction of mother tongue as compulsory subject in schools would make the students understand their regional culture, values, traditions, etc. He said that with the introduction of teaching regional language in schools it would be easy for students to read and write besides improving their listening and speaking capabilities.–Dawn
Posted by Zar Alam Khan Razakhel at 8:36 PM
Thursday, April 4, 2013
chitraltoday.net report CHITRAL, April 4, 2013: Despite all difficulties, a young Chitrali woman has challenged experienced politicians and a former dictator of the country by filing nomination papers for the National Assembly seat of Chitral. Asma Mehmood, a lawyer by profession, is also the contender for the provincial assembly seat of lower Chitral (PK-89). She hails from a small village called Suoch of the Terich valley in upper Chitral and has two elder brothers and one younger sister. She lives in her joint family, including parents, in Haripur. She belongs to the Majay family of Chitral. Ms Asma was born and brought up in Haripur as her father Laghal Khan worked in the National Rural Telecommunication Company (NRTC) in that city. She did her Matric from the Telecom Girls School and graduation from the Government Degree College Haripur. She obtained the bachelor of law degree from the Ayub Law College in 2006 and since then has been practicing law in Hariour, Abbottabad and Peshawar. Talking to chitraltoday.net, Ms Asma said though she was born and brought up outside Chitral she had an urge to do something for the backward area of Chitral where her relatives still lived. She said every year she also visited her home village in the upper Chitral. When asked if language would be a problem for her in communicating with the people, especially women of upper Chitral, during the electioneering, she said it would not, as she understood the language well and was able to convey her message through. She said that politicians born and bred in Chitral had done nothing for the area and those who lived outside Chitral had more love for their area and could do something for the development of the area. She said she wanted to make her political career in Chitral and would also be practicing law in the district. It may be noted that Begum Sher Wali Khan of Yarkhun valley was the first Chitrali woman who contested the election for the National Assembly seat of Chitral in 1988. However, she obtained only 1,423 votes. In that year, Nusrat Bhutto from Larkana won the election by bagging 32,812 votes. In the 1993, Begum Suleman Khan of the PPP also took part in the election for the National assembly seat and polled 15,765 votes but could not win the seat. Ms Asma is the fourth woman to take part in the national election in Chitral. Her decision to join politics has been welcomed by many people of Chitral as it would be a catalyst for other educated women to play their role in the national development.
Posted by Zar Alam Khan Razakhel at 10:00 PM
Sunday, March 24, 2013
Report Zar Alam Khan ISLAMABAD, March 24: Dispelling all impressions, former president Pervez Musharraf finally landed in Karachi on Sunday despite mounting threats to his life. As the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has already announced the schedule for the elections, his homecoming has special significance for the future politics of Chitral. ChitralToday (chitraltoday.net) talked to a number of prominent Chitralis belonging to different walks of life to know their impressions about Musharraf’s arrival in the country after about four years and his prospects of winning the elections, if he contests, from Chitral. Prof Dr Inayatullah Faizi: Dr Faizi is an intellectual and well-know writer and author. For the last many decades, he has been writing regularly about Chitral’s culture, traditions and history. He also has a strong grip on national issues and writes daily and weekly columns, called Dad Bedaad, for Peshawar-abased Urdu newspapers. About Musharraf’s contesting elections from Chitral, Dr Faizi said in 2010 former MNA Shahzada Mohiuddin (PML-Q) along with some ex-nazims of Chitral had invited Musharraf to contest elections from Chitral. He said there were three factors in support of Musharraf at that time: Shahzada Mohiuddin, the former nazims and suspension of work on the Lowari Tunnel. Now all the three factors are gone, he added. He said Shahzada Mohiuddin has retired from active politics due to falling health, the ex-nazims have been wooed back by the PPP and their leader Sartaj Ahmed is being given ticket for a provincial assembly seat of Chitral. The third factor due to which the people of Chitral were angry with the PPP-led government has also gone and work on the tunnel is going on in full swing for the last six months. He said if the former president contests the elections from Chitral, he would not be able to get more than 3,000 (three thousand) votes. To win the elections for the National Assembly seat of Chitral (NA-32), one has to bag over 30,000 votes. Nusrat Bhutto won the seat with over 38,000 votes and Mohiuddin reached the assembly in 2008 with 33,000 votes, he added. “If Salim Khan contests for the NA seat, will the people of Garam Chashma vote for Musharraf; if Abdul Akbar contests for the seat, will Jamaat-i-Islami vote for Musharraf; if Saeed Ahmed stands, will the people of his area (Tor Khow) vote for Musharraf,” Dr Faizi asked. Sam Saam Ali Khan Advocate: Sam Saam Ali Khan is a senior lawyer from upper Chitral and is based in Karachi, Back home, he was also active in local government elections. Mr Ali said the people of Chitral respected Musharraf for constructing the Lowari Tunnel. The construction of the Lowari Tunnel has changed the fate of Chitral and the people of the area are indebted to Musharraf. Secondly, he added, Musharraf has been talking very high of the people of Chitral all over the world. Mohamamd Ali Mujahid: Mujahid is the chief editor of Shandur Magazine and has been publishing the weekly for the last over 15 years first from Karachi and now from Peshawar. He said if Musharraf or even his wife contested elections from Chitral, over 70 per cent of the people would vote for him. He said he had been visiting all areas of Chitral and had got the impression that Musharraf was very popular among the Chitralis. People of Chitral never forgot the services of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and have been voting for his family for the last so many decades. Musharraf has also done great favours for the people of this backward valley, so there is no question that the people of Chitral would forget his services. They would vote for him in complete disregard to their party affiliations. In reply to a question, he said as a former president and ex-chief of the army staff Musharraf would still be in a better position to serve the area. He said that political parties had failed to deliver and this can be judged from the performance of the elected representatives during the last five years. Maulana Mohammad Ashraf said it did not auger well for a former president of Pakistan to contest election for a single NA seat in Chitral. He said Musharraf has no political future as he has no political party to play an active and sustainable role in politics. Rehmat Ali Jaffar Dost: Dost is an active social worker from Booni and has been working for environment protection for the last many years. He is also a very popular and non-controversial figure of Chitral. He said he keeps on visiting and meeting the people in the whole valley of Chitral and outside as well round the year. He said Musharraf is the biggest benefactor of Chitral and people, especially women of the valley, have welcomed Musharraf’s return to the country. He said if Musharraf contested the elections from NA 32, the securities of his rivals would be forfeited. Retired Subedar Sarfaraz Shah said it would be premature to talk about Musharraf’s winning the elections. He said the KPK government would never give security clearance for the former president’s entry into the Malakand division, so his contesting the polls was out of question. M. Ghaffar Khan, a Chitrali working in Islamabad, said I have never voted in the past but if Musharraf comes, I will go and vote for him. He said local politicians had done nothing for the working class. We suffered a lot while coming to Islamabad and going back. Now the construction of the tunnel has resolved our big issue, he added. Didarul Mulk, Ahmed, Mir Dullah Khan and Meraj Wali said they would also vote for Musharraf along with their families.
Posted by Zar Alam Khan Razakhel at 8:51 PM
Thursday, March 14, 2013
PESHAWAR, March 12: District administration and police officials from Chitral on Tuesday appeared before Peshawar High Court in the suo motu hearing of the poaching of a markhor and said they were unable to arrest the poachers. On Feb 27, a two-member bench comprising Chief Justice Dost Mohammad Khan and Justice Mrs Irshad Qaiser had directed the district administration and the police to arrest the poachers. The court had also summoned the chief conservator of the province. On Tuesday, the same bench of the court gave the deadline of April 10 to the officials to arrest the poachers otherwise it said the officers would be held responsible and proceeded against under the law. Additional Advocate General Obaid Razak and the chief conservator wildlife informed the court that the registration of the double cabin Datsun (GLT-5512) in which the poachers had escaped was actually allotted to a truck in Gilgit-Baltistan. The judges asked the officials that if they were unable to arrest the culprits because of their influence they should tell their names to the bench. It may be recalled that in a report published in chitraltoday.net on Feb 18, it was reported that five unknown persons driving a red double-cabin Datsun (GLT-5512) were caught red-handed by the forest staff after they hunted the markhor in Birmoghlast near Chitral. But the poachers escaped with the booty, threatening the forest officials of dire consequences. However, during the brawl the forest officials snatched a piece of leg, head of the animal and hide from the poachers. Despite registration of a case with the local police, the culprits, however, remain un-traced. People of the area are surprised why someone could so openly hunt the animal and remained untraced. So far it is also not known whose property this mysterious Datsun bearing GLT 5512 registration plate was. Is it difficult to trace the owner of the vehicle in an area like Chitral? It shows the incompetency of the police and the wildlife department officials. Many people say they are hand in glove with the poachers. The suo motu action by the PHC chief Justice is a welcomed news to discourage such elements and bring all those to justice who have been plundering with the resources of Chitral with impunity.
Posted by Zar Alam Khan Razakhel at 7:59 PM
Monday, April 16, 2012
Sunday, September 18, 2011
CHITRAL: A large number of basic education community schools (BECS) have been opened in Chitral under the National Education Foundation (NEF). They are imparting basic education to both male and female students from nursery to class 5. These BEC schools were established in 1999 with the purpose to educate adults as well as children to increase literacy ratio. Students of six classes were accommodated in a single rented room which was often without fan, drinking water, toilet, desk, furniture and other basic facilities. Only one female teacher has been posted in each school to teach students from nursery to class 5e. The teachers were first paid rupees 2,000 salary and then it was increased to Rs5,000. However, since 2005 the teachers salaries were not increased. And since October 2010, this monthly honorarium of the teachers has also been stopped and the teachers are working without any pay since then. A teacher, Gul Amina, of Aryan village in southern Chitral, told this scribe that she was teaching more than 40 students in one rented room but her salary had been stopped for the last one year. A student of class 5th, Ayisha said she was very much fond of education and wanted to become a doctor but she along with other students was facing numerous problems. There is no desk, no toilet, no drinking water, no fan, no light and no other facilities. The teachers have appealed to the president, prime minister as well as donor agencies to release the pending salaries of these teachers and provide all basic facilities to the schools.—GH Farooqui
Posted by Zar Alam Khan Razakhel at 8:46 PM
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- Zar Alam Khan Razakhel
- Village Dizg, Yarkhun valley, Chitral, Pakistan
- I blog at http://chitraltoday.net (ChitralToday) about Chitral, its people, culture, traditions and issues. I have been writing about Chitral since 2000. Chitral is a scenic valley in the extreme north-west of Pakistan.