BANNU: A protester was injured when stones were thrown during a demonstration by the dwellers of PK-72 constituency here on Monday to protest a provincial government’s notification naming the headquarters of the newly-established tehsil as Bakkakhel.

According to reports, hundreds of protesters from different areas of newly-established tehsil reached Lwara Pul early on Monday after marching on various roads and blocked the Bannu-Mayran artery for over six hours. The protesters also included district naib nazim Pir Muneer Shah, tehsil and district councillors and former MPA Syed Hamid Shah.

Addressing the protesters, the elders accused special coordinator to chief minister on transport MPA Malak Shad Mohammad of making the new tehsil as controversial. They alleged the newly-notified tehsil was named after the native town of the MPA in violation of people’s mandate. They alleged the lawmaker had also declared Bakkakhel as headquarters of the new tehsil.

They demanded that the government withdrew the notification and name the new tehsil after Bannu-II and Bannu city should be declared as its headquarters.

Government officials tried to hold talks with the protesters but they refused.

Later, the enraged protesters removed the gate built with the name of MPA inscribed on it. Gunshots were fired and stones were thrown during the protest, resulting in injuries to a youth.

Published in Dawn, August 22nd, 2017

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Pakistani columnist Farman Nawaz, who previously ran an Urdu Weekly Jirga Bannu, is the editor of The Bannu Times. Nawaz also runs an online newspaper Khyber Pakhtunkhwa News and KAS Research Journal. Nawaz has written English articles for Global Times China , Daily Outlook Afghanistan and several leading English newspapers of Pakistan. He had also worked as a blogger for Express News TV Network website.

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