Provision of Rs23bn to AJK to resolve unrest

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Azad Kashmir : Following recent confrontations and protests in the region, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif agreed on Monday the immediate provision of Rs23 billion to Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK). The Jammu Kashmir Joint Awami Action Committee (JAAC), which is led by traders in the majority of the state, has been pushing for the elimination of the elite class's privileges as well as the provision of electricity in AJK at the cost of hydropower generation.

It has also been asking for subsidised wheat flour. In an attempt to stop a lengthy march that the JAAC had announced to pressure the government to abide by a deal struck between the two in February of this year, police detained over 70 activists on May 9 and 10.

This led to violent altercations in Dadyal and Following recent confrontations and protests in the region, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif agreed on Monday the immediate provision of Rs23 billion to Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK). The Jammu Kashmir Joint Awami Action Committee (JAAC), which is led by traders in the majority of the state, has been pushing for the elimination of the elite class's privileges as well as the provision of electricity in AJK at the cost of hydropower generation.

It has also been asking for subsidised wheat flour. In an attempt to stop a lengthy march that the JAAC had announced to pressure the government to abide by a deal struck between the two in February of this year, police detained over 70 activists on May 9 and 10. This led to violent altercations in Dadyal.

The following day, in the midst of a wheel-jam and shutter-down strike that affected the entire region, AJK saw violent altercations between the police and the protestors that left at least one police official dead and over ninety others injured.

The protest movement began its march on Muzaffarabad on Sunday, despite the fact that a potential compromise between the AJK government and the JAAC had remained elusive.

Following a deadlock in negotiations between the AJK Chief Secretary Dawood Bareach and the JAAC core committee in Rawalakot, the movement declared its intention to march on the state capital. This led a Rawalakot protest leader to accuse the government of using deceptive methods.

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