Ahmed hailed from Larkhalozo, a remote area in Bajaur plagued by poverty. Seeking a better life, he migrated to Peshawar, and later he established a modest business in Multan. Hopeful for a brighter future, Ahmed’s aspirations soared when his relative initiated his paperwork for European citizenship.

Venturing to Kunar, Afghanistan, Ahmed sought assistance from his maternal uncle to finalize the necessary documents for European citizenship. Despite the shared lineage between the Mamund people on both sides of the Durand Line, decades of severed ties and restricted movement have created an impassable barrier.

Last week, Ahmed attempted to cross the border illegally from Katkot Mamund, bypassing the legal complexities of the Torkham corridor. Tragically, harsh weather conditions, including snow and rain, thwarted his journey. Despite his resilience, Ahmed succumbed to the unforgiving wilderness, his life slipping away amidst the vast expanse of forests and mountains.

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A week and a half later, the Bajaur police and residents discovered Ahmed’s lifeless body at Katkot after an arduous search. Heartbroken friends and relatives, once hopeful of Ahmed’s European journey, mourned his untimely demise.

Abubakar Mamund, a human rights advocate in Bajaur, decries the widening gap between neighboring nations, which deprives people of their basic rights. He calls upon the government to reopen nearby corridors for humanitarian traffic, enabling seamless interaction between communities.

Highlighting the perilous consequences of alternative routes, Abubakar underscores the urgency for immediate action to prevent further loss of life. It’s imperative to safeguard travelers like Ahmed from the perils of treacherous roads and wild predators, ensuring a safer passage for all.