Kalash projects -letter from Shah Karez Chitral
I wish to bring forward two points on the subject news published recently. One is that this is not the first time that any public sector development plan for Kalash communities has been prepared. We have been hearing of multi Million rupees projects on development of Kalash valleys but the sad thing is that no significant improvement has occurred in the life conditions of Kalash people.
For one the budget portfolios of the Kalash Valleys Development Project (KVDP) bear witness to the huge spending in the past. The second point is who identifies the need for construction of Jastakan, or spending money on ethnology museum.
I am sure the communities have not been consulted about their priority issues while preparing the ADP. This is a safe method of draining public money in the name of projects which have been identified elsewhere and the beneficiary communities do not know about them.
According to my information the Kalash do not need any Jastakan as there are already more than enough Jastakans; 7 Jastakans through KVDP funds and 6 from the Presidents’ funds have already been constructed, culturally the Kalash need one Jastakan for each lineage group and they have already more than enough of them. The Ethnology Museum is already in operation in Bumburet, there is hardly any need for additional spending, the credit for the construction and operalionalization of this project goes to Greek Cooperative.
If the government has any funds to spend in Kalash valleys then the communities in each of the valley must be consulted for their needs and priorities and they must be involved in the whole process so that their real needs are addressed and the money is spent judiciously.