Pakistani-occupied Kashmir: Protesters throw electricity bill into river
Civil society members of Pakistani-occupied Kashmir (PoK)'s Muzaffarabad city recently threw electricity bills into the river to protest against rising power tariff.
In Muzaffarabad, a sit-in camp has been established by the people action committee since Sept 20, initially at a roundabout in front of the Press Club and later on the club premises facing the main thoroughfare, with an appeal to the people that they should not pay their electricity bills, reports Dawn News.
Participants of the sit-in, who included traders, lawyers, students and vendors, would daily attend the activity from 9am to 4pm every day, during which they would collect electricity bills from consumers visiting them from different city neighbourhoods.
Participants were seen making boats and aeroplanes of electricity bills which they had announced would be thrown into Neelum River on Sept 28.
On Thursday, the administration had deployed several contingents of riot police in the surroundings of the sit-in camp in a bid to frighten the demonstrators and restrain them from dumping electricity bills in the river, but in vain, reported Dawn News.
At about 2pm, the undeterred demonstrators who were led by Shaukat Nawaz Mir, the elected president of the traders of Muzaffarabad, intensified sloganeering and headed towards the nearby Saheli Sarkar Bridge from where they threw paper boats and aeroplane into Neelum river.
Sources told Dawn that under the policy of the government, the Muzaffarabad deputy commissioner had categorically directed the duty magistrates — assistant commissioner (rural) Munir Ahmed Qureshi and tehsildar Syed Zameer Shah — to take all steps (including the baton charge) to stop the protesters from dumping electricity bills in the river.
“Despite categorical instructions, you both failed to perform your assigned responsibilities in a befitting manner due to which writ of the government stood challenged… You should therefore explain as to why disciplinary action should not be taken against you,” read the explanation notice, a copy of which was available with Dawn.