September 30, 2011

A graceful lady changes the face of Gilgit-Baltistan

The Terrorland Report 

Sadia Danish talking to media.
SADIA Danish is the new face of Gilgit-Baltistan – The Orphaned Land of Pakistan. She is the Tourism, Sports, Culture and Youth Affairs Adviser to the unconstitutionally elected Chief Minister. 

She is also President of the women-wing of the ruling Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) in the region, which has no constitutional rights and no representation in the Pakistani Parliament since 1947. 

Yes! Gilgit-Baltistan is really the Orphaned Land of Pakistan!

But, now, it seems that the Orphaned region has got a graceful mother out of the blue! That is what the youth of the region thinks today as the Cyber Generation is fed-up with their uneducated and uncivilized traditional leaders who are actually agents of the secret agencies... the real rulers in the region.

Sadia is young, educated and charismatic. She is changing the image of the region rapidly, and the helpless people of the mountainous region are happy to find a leader-in-the-making! The frustrated people see a ray of hope at the end of the tunnel that after 64 years of independence, finally they may get all constitutional rights and their voice may reach other regions of Pakistan.

The iron-lady of Gilgit-Baltistan leads crowd of men.
Ms Danish is said to be a brave lady. She married a man from a different sect and faced criticism from her community and relatives. Unfortunately, her husband, a political activist, was assassinated. A friend of Sadia's husband writes about him on the Facebook:

"I knew this man personally, he was a man of courage, zeal and ambitions. we had a very good time a few months before his dreadful assassination. he was a promising leader for this long ignored nation. i often miss him when I look around for a courageous leader in the region. may God bless him thereafter with His utmost kindness. Ameen."

The murder of her husband was a great tragedy for Ms Danish and her young children. But this iron-lady decided to fight back against biases, hatred and crimes in a democratic way so that there is peace and prosperity in the terrorized region especially the capital city, Gilgit.

Thus she joined practical politics and now the over 2 million people of Gilgit-Baltistan consider her the Cyber Generation leader. Men, women, youth and children everyone is fascinated by this graceful lady. Locals say that when she speaks, uncontrollable crowds become dumb silent!

"Besides the Sunnis, Shias, Ismailis and Noorbakhshias, Ahmedis and Christians also consider a friendly Sadia as a leader of their own, rather a family member," says an educationist from the region.

Women are happy to see the Adviser amongst themselves.
Shina, Balti, Burushaski, Wakhi, Khowar, Domaki, Punjabi, Pashtu, Kashmiri and other ethnic groups settled in the region say that a new era of pluralism has started in Gilgit-Baltistan. "It's according to the demands of the new globalized age!" 

Besides her personal leadership qualities, Sadia comes from a very learned family-background of Gilgit. Her father Amin Zia is known as Shakespeare of Shina, one of the main local languages. He is author of many books. So are many other family members.

Therefore, instead of wearing a veil and hesitating to talk to men, Sadia gracefully dresses and leads crowds of men in the society, considered male-dominated, conservative and tribal in nature. This is a great change. "But her confidence should be transferred to every girl from the region," says a girl student.

Recently, during a polo tournament in a far-flung village of the region, for the first time, women were reportedly allowed to see the matches. However, when a photograph of the event was posted on the internet, it had been blurred so that no participant becomes victim of domestic violence. 

Ms Danish gives trophy to winner team during polo festival.
A comment on the photo said: "Never had seen this before, great step towards women-empowerment... yes women are also human beings, they also need entertainment."

So change is in the air and the educated people can accelerate it! 

"When Sadia Danish walks," says a political analyst while talking about the changed behavior of men in Gilgit-Baltistan, "men silently and respectfully follow her. This has increased her confidence immensely. She has got the status of a rock-star.

"Despite being compared with Benazir Bhutto (BB), some people call her Margaret Thatcher (former British Prime Minister) and the only Man in the current regional cabinet. However, she herself may like to compare herself with the modern-day Jawari (a legendary woman who ruled Gilgit-Baltistan centuries ago)."

Sadia is said to be an avid user of the internet. Her favorite quotations on her Facebook page reads: "I am convinced that dealing intelligently with the press is of the greatest importance to the success and effectiveness of a humanitarian mission--Alvin Adams."

Another quotation reads: "The Aim of an Argument ... should not be victory, but progress--Joseph Joubert"
Veiled village women see an outdoor activity for first time.
She considers herself a "social worker" and her status says: "Social worker busy working to provide basic health care, educational facilities and safe guarding women's rights in Gilgit-Baltistan. Popularizing BB's visions among people in general and women in particular.

"Sectarian harmony in GB is atop my priorities and working to my best level to create a conducive socio-politico environment based on re-conciliatory terms. Represent womenfolk of Gilgit-Baltistan on national and international forums and seminars."

That is why she has been declared a "Ray of Hope" and people believe that she will turn the dreams of the people in reality one day. However, local journalists say that until there are many Sadia Danish-like women in every village and city of the region, development will just remain a dream of the educated lot! "From Khaplu to Ishkoman, and Gojal to Chilas, Sadia Danish should develop a network of young women and men so that the change in the region is real not cosmetic."

Sadia as a government official consoles women in misery.
Some people, who have seen all weathers in the region, say that the military establishment is not ready to give Gilgit-Baltistan a Constitutional status as they still consider the region a part of Kashmir. "Johar Ali was an Aligarh-educated national-level leader," says a retired bureaucrat, "but the secret agencies accused him of incest and there were overnight wall-chalking all over the city (Gilgit) as a result he couldn't make the region a province despite promises from Z.A. Bhutto. Another promising leader was Saif-ur-Rehman but he was killed in cold-blood."

A retired officer of the Pakistan Army says that the secret agencies want leaders of their choice from all sides including the Sunnis, Shias, Ismailis and Norbakhsis. "Their bosses use these so-called leaders to create sectarian rift as a part of their divide-and-rule strategy. This is what is happening for the last 64 years." 

Anyway, now, the oppressed people of the region hope that one day Sadia Danish would be the Chief Minister or Governor of a Constitutionally Fifth Province (Gilgit-Baltistan), or a Federal Minister or even the Prime Minister of Pakistan. Though it seems a dream today but the message is very clear: dare to dream the unthinkable!

Related must-read articles
  1. Gilgit-Baltistan – The Orphaned Land of Pakistan
  2. Cyber Age challenges & Ismaili Muslims
  3. Returning home as dead bodies
  4. Tribalism — Aga Khan's pluralism under threat in Gilgit-Baltistan
  5. Hunza in crises
  6. Gojal & Liu Xiaobo — China encroaching on Pakistani land ?
  7. Tribalism — a wild wish to make Hunza utopia of the world!
  8. I fear no one on earth, says ISI official
  9. ISI involved in "honor-killing" incidents
  10. I escaped death but she was killed
  11. ISI scandalizes mental condition & female relatives of critics  
  12. The Jan (alive) and Bayjan (dead) of Gilgit-Baltistan 
  13. 'Gilgit-Baltistan is not the Orphaned Land of Pakistan'
  14. Gilgit-Baltistan becomes hell of military & intelligence games 
  15. End of sectarianism: Shia leader makes historic statement 
  16. 'Soldiers involved in sexual crimes in Gilgit-Baltistan & Azad Kashmir'


      1. This is an excellent write-up.

      2. thanks 4 encouraging a daughter of the land this will encourage other women 2 to take part in politics to really change the face of the region

      3. Thanks to the writer for in depth chronology and personal information about Sadia Daninsh in an encouraging manner.

      4. Dear Sir,

        I edit a qurterly magazine that is published by a non-profit organization based in Washington DC.

        I would like tio include this articel (attached below) in our November 2011 issue.

        I am writing this to ask you for the formal permission to reprint this article.

        Thank you.


        Syed-Mohsin Naquvi

        Managing Editor, The I.I.C. MONITOR, Washington DC
        TEL: +1-732-501 1168


      5. The writer has painted a clear picture of the political scenario in G.B , and shown the real faces of the un-educated and un-civilized so called polititions of G.B,who have just enjoyed the protocol n the luxuries in the past and never served the people of this region. Its true Mohtarama SADIA DANISH the leader in-making is rapidly changing the face of Gilgit-Balistan.Inshallah in future she will definitely be the Chief Minister or Governor of G.B.

      6. Gilgit is not orphaned land what a silly comment. The status of gilgit is disputed . Until Occupied Kashmir has a referendum gilgit will remain in limbo. It will get seats in in National assembly and Senate after such a referendum. Same situation in azad kashmir govt. Until then laws passed by Pakistan nation assembly dont apply to gilgit or kashmir

        resident of gilgit dont pay taxes to federal govt

      7. The article is self-contradictory to begin with. While effusively praising the lady you have punctuated your assertions about the current set-up in GB and persons who run it with epithets like "unconstitutional" and "Orphaned land".

        First off , how can she be a ray of hope when all the edifice of her efforts is founded on the setup you call unconstitutional.

        She brings a good face to the politics of GB where we get to see semi to illiterate taking charge of important political posts. But that's that. Her role ends there. If you ascribe recent developments across GB in terms of increased political activity and celebrations of local sports and culture, it's not because of Ms Danish.

        Right from the beginning in her role as the "Advisor" , she has remained the "poster lady" of events conceived , executed and promoted by the tourism department of GB. For GB , the events like recent festival in the Rama pasture of Astore valley are nothing new. We have hosted galas and celebrations of much wider scope earlier. I mean the credit for these events goes to the Secretary Tourism and the District Administration of the area which do all the spade work to make them a success. You should praise them instead.

        And please get your facts correct. She married late Danish who was from Nagaral locality of central Gilgit from a Shia family and NOT , as you say , from her rival sect.

      8. How Gilgit-Baltistan is not a part of Kashmir, this articles makes the issue crystal clear:

        "Gilgit-Baltistan – The Orphaned Land of Pakistan"

      9. The rivalry and jealousy shown in the above remarks speak of the supremacy and effective implementation of Festivals and sport events,winning Shandur Polo after 5 years,supervised by Mohtarama Sadia Danish,is a vivid proof of acknowledging her popularity and hard work by the writer.One envies superior to him,it is a universal fact.It would enhance my knowledge if the writer of the above comment could tell as to when and how Rama Gala was celebrated in the past....?Secretaries and Dist.Administration are subordinate offices of the Ministers.

      10. Writer Wrote Good but the thing he wrote smells fishy, i believe if he had proved 1% wrote up about the lady above was true. but as far as i know, or as far as i see i cannot see her work done, which the write mentioned above, yeah in one case i believe that she worked for her 'own premises"
        hope you people understand the word Own premises

      11. @Anonymous Oct 8 ,

        I simply stated the facts. There is no rivalry at all. I didn't mean to oppose the induction of Ms Danish into the murky politics of GB ( i am sorry if you understood it that way) but i was focusing on the over estimation of her role in the article above. To emphasize , i believe her presence is a breath of fresh air in the politics of GB , there is no doubt about that. But to ascribe victories in Polo in Shandur or first-ever Rama festival in Astore to her is totally an overstatement.
        Yes we won Shandur after five years and IT WAS NOT BECAUSE OF MS Danish. It's like saying that Pakistan won 1992 cricket World Cup because so and so was the minister for sports at that time. Moreover , you are degrading the handwork of players by attributing success to an "Advisor" on sports. And do you know the team went from Gilgit only but it was called "Team of Gilgit Baltistan" just to please a CM who strongly feels about Baltistan.

        Secondly , RAMA festival may have been her idea , as i don't know for sure who came up with this in the first place. But even if it was her idea , RAMA wouldn't have been possible if there was no Minister (i mean Naseer) from Astore and the Secretary Tourism hadn't put in efforts into making the event a success through the District Administratin.

        Lastly yes the secretaries and district administration are subordinate but they are independent in many ways and subject to clear Rules of Business and state laws also.

      12. Well- @Dr Hajat Hunzai-

        I dont think there are any personal premises- and I am sure you are just saying for the sake of SAYING something- It wont make you and Intellectual- She is the BRAVE DAUGHTER of the LAND and belongs to a very respectable family -

        I guess we should appreciate the acts that are promoting the TOURISM in Gilgit-Baltistan. And for your information- there was no festival names as RAMA FESTIVAL- go check ot out and It was solely her IDEA-

      13. @ Dj Hajat Hunzai,

        tell ur Rani instead of negative propaganda now at this age at least do something positive for GBians who respect u as a dear daughter of the land like Sadia Danish

      14. It is so unfortunate to know that people from Gilgit- Baltistan are also reluctant to give due respect and credit to the innovators in the field of Politics- From my perspective- This lady has changed the whole scenario- her presence itself makes a difference- The way she lives, Talks and walks and dresses up- It is really Laudable and we all must respect her for her nobility and for her actions to improve the TOURISM - which is the back bone of the economy of Gilgit-Baltistan.

        She truly is a leader and a future Chief Minister-

      15. This is our dilemma, we don't encourage those who try to to good for our lands, we keep on criticizing who sacrifice their time, wealth and domestic life for the sake of communal development, advancement in infrastructure, mental and physical growth of our youth and progressive programs for generations to come. Yea, ofcourse there are many constitutional hurdles in giving GB a legal status, but shoudn't we be preparing for a time when we are going to get our Legal Rights, and we will be needing educated, sincere, young and courageous politicians like Ms Sadia Danish..??..and as far as the distt. administration is concerned, Rama is there since centuries, no one ever got this idea, but Ms Sadia Danish is, the reason is, she is a leader of our lands, she is a true daughter of GB, she wants to do good for us, so please, if we cannot join hands with such leaders, we do not have got any right to criticize as well. My sincere wishes are always with her, may Allah bless her cause. Ameen

      16. It will be injustice if we deprive Ms.Sadia Danish in giving her the credit of Victory at Shandur after 5 or 6 years,for the team was selected purely on merit basis by her and approved by the CM,GB.It was first time that regional and other prejudices were set aloof while selecting the team.I think she deserves to be lauded for handling this hard ordeal in the petty political scenario of sects in the area.
        Rama Polo Festival was substituent of Babusar polo program as affirmed by the office at the helm of affairs.I happened to read a newspaper carrying a statement of Mr.Naseer,where in he had openly lauded the role of Advisor Tourism in arranging and facilitating the Rama Polo Festival and thanked her for paying heed to his demand.He had further added that the Tourism Department was like a dead horse before Ms.Sadia Danish took the charge of Advisor Tourism.
        Mr. Anonymous has unveiled himself by refuting the authority of a public representative and claiming to have an upper hand under certain business rules and state of law.
        Anyway....I wish best of luck for the bureaucrat and a very brilliant political future for Ms.Sadia Danish.

      17. It is said quite truly in the above article that this lady is the only man in the cabinet of CM,GB.We have seen her active in representing womenfolk of GB in political,social and official gatherings,we are really amazed to see her delivering speeches in Shina, Urdu and English with remarkable accent and confidence.As Adviser Tourism she is putting all her efforts to promote Tourism,culture and sports with scanty budgetary provisions.Apart from her own responsibilities she is stated to have extended moral and monetary help to widows,marriages of orphan damsels and leaves her doors open for every needy person,its a great philanthropic service for the deserving persons, purely on humanitarian basis.She is new in political arena of GB but to be sure she is leaving indelible memories and memoirs in the minds of poor people and womenfolk in GB and gradually ascending to the rank of political model and a catalyst for the rest of politician of GB.It should be kept in mind that neither I'm a fan nor a pro PPP person but the truth speaks itself.Our people should encourage this active, magnetic and charismatic lady without being jealous and bigot.

      18. What are her achievements being responsible for such an important department? How can you prove that if she dresses well, it means she has the intellectual and ability of being a leader? Does a leader really "needs a good dress" or ability to work and serve for the nation? Do we need "model girls" or "leaders" for our nation?

      19. she has given grace to the "disgraced land" and this is her biggest achievement so far... yes, a leader needs "good dress" to look civilized otherwise international leaders treat you like sheep-smelling shepherds... we need both model girls in showbiz and charismatic leaders in politics like foreign minister hina rabbani khar and speaker national assembly dr fahmida mirza.

      20. Dear Mr. Anonymous-

        You focused on what he addressed her personality but you neglested the part where he actually addressed her leadership skills-

        We should appreciate them- they areb mothers and sisters of our land-


      21. dear sir,
        you are focused only personality, this is not reality, you are educated person don't conceal reality. The entire role of PPP don't do any thing. why you frustrate people.

      22. Tundi e baad e mukhalif se na ghabra a uqaab ...
        Yeh to chalti hay tujhay ooncha uranay k liye ...

        Dear Mohtarama Sadia Danish Sahiba !
        Mein aap ko dil i gehraiyon se aap k bulad hoslay or aap ki azmat ko salam paish karta hoon, Jis hoslay k sath aap ne apnay mukhalifeen ko naakon channay chabwaye hain uss k misaal bohot kum milti hay , or jis tarah aap ghareebon , yateemon , nadaron, bewaauon , ki madad karti hain wo apni misaal aap hay .Allah aap ko iss ka ajar dega or aap ka qadd or buland hoga or aap k dushman aap k pairon ki dhool ko bhi nahi choo sakengay,aap k liye her dil mein izzat or her nazar mein ehtaraam hay . Allah aap ko , aap k bachon ko apni hifz o amaan mein rakhay aameen .

      23. Jihay Bhutto, Jihay Bibi- Jihay Sadia Danish-

      24. Sadia Danish is truely amazing ,she is a ray of hope for GILGIT BALTISTAN
        May you Live long and may ALLAH bless you.....