Altaf Hamid Rao,
MIRPUR (AJK), (Parliament Times) : Britain-based Kashmiris rights outfit the Global Pakistan Kashmir Supreme Council (GPKSC) Thursday categorically dispelled the impression that the visit overseas Pakistanis and Kashmiris were emerging as the major carrier of the continual spreading COVID-19 during visit to their ancestral places in the country including Mirpur district of Azad Jammu Kashmir.
“The prevailing scenario emerged from the general impression about the influx of the UK-based Pakistani and Kashmiri expatriates as one of the major causes of the rising outbreak of the pandemic was taken with grave concern by the Pakistani/Kashmiri Diaspora community travelling to their ancestral home towns including Mirpur AJK”, said Chairman of the Global Pak Kashmir Supreme Council Raja Sikander Khan, while talking to our special AJK Correspondent and Resident Editor Altaf Hamid Rao here on Thursday over the factual grounds emerging of the global issue of the pandemic.
Continuing, Sikander, currently on visit to Pakistan and AJK, said “blaming the visiting Pakistani / Kashmiri expatriates of carrying the COVID-19 virus and spreading it in Pakistan & AJK stands no strength”. He stated that in fact the people of Pakistan & AKJK were not aware of the factual position to this direction.
The GPKSC Chairman underlined as saying “the Diaspora community traveling from UK to their ancestral home cities in Pakistan and AJK go under very strict & costly Covid-19 tests 72 hours prior to their departure and only after the receipt of their negative test report they are allowed to travel to Pakistan and than once arrive Pakistan they are tested again on at the airports of the country for onward departure for their respective local destinations with strict advise of going in to the quarantine for 10 to 14 days at their local residences in Mirpur and other stations in AJK”.
Raja Sikander Khan further said that all new arrivals from the United Kingdom were also got registered at all the entry points before stepping into the AJK territory containing full details of their name and local home addresses besides the sites they intend to visit to enable the local health authorities close to their homes in Azad Kashmir to exercise a close medical check up to ascertain about the absence of the Corona Virus with full assurance about the non-carrying of the pandemic and were passing through the requisite quarantine period.
Raja Sikander Khan requested to the local community and other stake holders to refrain from blaming the overseas community as the major carriers of the pandemic upon their arrival at their ancestral resorts in the country including AJK.
The GPKSC Chairman advised the visiting expatriates to strictly follow and act upon SOPs containing the medical advisory devised by the health authorities of Pakistan and AJK especially wearing the face masks, maintain social distances, avoiding handshaking , hugging and attending public gatherings.
To a question, Raja Sikander Khan emphasized that since the Pakistani / Kashmiri Diaspora were the backbone of the country, they should be warmly welcomed during their visit to their ancestral towns in the country including AJK under the same enthusiastic spirit as they demonstrate while receiving the visitors from Pakistan and AJK during their routine trips to Britain, Europe, USA and other foreign countries. .
“It is because of the arrival of heavy foreign remittances from the Diaspora community to our beloved Pakistan, the country is at the path of speedy socio-economic progress and prosperity besides their huge investments in the corporate sectors including the real estate businesses opening new vistas of employment opportunities for millions of the local job seekers”, the GPKSC Chairman maintained while responding to another query.
To another question, Raja Sikander also requested the Pakistani and Kashmiri expatriates to strictly abide by the local rules and regulations upon their arrival to visit their ancestral places and residences in Pakistan and Azad Jammu Kashmir by most particularly of teaching our children of acting upon the moral behavior through polite and respectful attitude towards all the concerned including the local law enforcement agencies, he concluded.