Peace Returns to Balochistan

17 Mar

By Tariq Rizwan

Though government has been able to overcome the low level insurgency in Balochistan and security has improved significantly, yet it will take some more time to completely root out the factors involved. The self styled Sardars and Nawabs, tribal feuds, sectarianism, ethnic divide and external interference specially spillover effects of security situation in Afghanistan have greatly affected the law and order situation in Balochistan for the last one decade. Balochistan is laden with mineral resources and Pakistan will be able to stabilize the province’s economy as well as its own by its proper utilization in the time to come.

The peaceful transition of political governments, construction of highways across the province, improving law and order situation and rising confidence of locals as well as foreign investors are some shining indicators. The efforts of Federal government and Army in terms of employment under Aghaz-e-Haooq-e-Balochistan and establishing a strong network of Cadet Colleges across Balochistan is near to bear the fruits.

People of Balochistan are coming out of the trauma, where thousands of local Baloch, Pashtuns, settlers and security personnel lost their lives in the terror attacks. The recent Seminar “Peace and Prosperity in Balochistan”, organized in Serena hotel, Quetta by University of Balochistan, was largely attended by intellectuals, political figures and media persons from all over the country. It is considered an encouraging move on the part of Balochistan University and sitting PML (N) government. Local politicians, academics and journalists spoke boldly which may further strengthen the bond between the Federation and the Province of Balochistan.

Several external forces including Afghanistan are working against Pakistan in Balochistan. Kabul is playing an active role in destabilizing Balochistan at the behest of India without realizing that economic development in Balochistan is in the best interest of Afghanistan. Balochistan is a gate way towards Afghanistan and Central Asia. CPEC is a game changer for Pakistan and Afghanistan as it can connect Afghanistan and Central Asia to the Sea via Gwadar Port.

The foreign mercenaries and self exiled Baloch Sub Nationalists are working hand in glow to regain their lost popularity with foreign money and support. Apart from financial and moral support, hostile networks are providing ammunitions to the Baloch leaders and using them to create disturbance in the province. Their main agenda is to break and divide Pakistan once again. The miscreant leaders are enjoying abroad in a self-exile and sponsoring terror in Balochistan. Afghanistan is the hub for low tier leadership while Europe is providing asylum to all heads of these miscreant groups.

Foreign media has also left no stone unturned in projecting these Sub Nationalists as heroes of Baloch nation. They are being rewarded for their efforts of creating law and order situation in Balochistan.  The recent edition of Herald of 15 Apr, 2015 showing the article “Mama Qadeer, the Voice of Missing” written by Sana Nasir with a photograph of Mama Qadeer is an effort in this regard. Qadeer’s son Jalil Rekki was affiliated with “Baloch Republican Army – BRA”, a hard core militant group. There is no doubt, he and the group BRA are involved in terror attacks across Balochistan and carrying terror attacks including bomb blasts, hand grenade attacks, killing innocent people and destroying gas and electricity infrastructure. The group alongwith BLA and BLF, are still active in the province. Brahmdagh is controlling BRA from Geneva, Switzerland with the financial support of Indian “RAW”.

Reports in foreign media like discovery of the mass graves in Tootak area of Khuzdar on 25 Jan 2014 created a furor.  Consequently, Baloch Sub Nationalists have unleashed a barrage of allegations against Pakistan by bloating the number of bodies found and declaring them to be those of “Missing Persons”. The discovery has provided the Baloch sub nationalists a whip to wallop Pakistan and use the news as propaganda to portray Balochistan problem as a human rights issue at international forums and seek support.

In the same chain of events, on 29th January 2014, the self exiled Baloch sub nationalists including Hyrbiar Marri, Mir Suleman Khan Daud and Mehrab Baloch (Suleman Khan’s Assistant) met US Congressmen Louie Gohmert, Steve King and Dana Rohrabacher at London to propagate against Pakistan for alleged human rights violations in Balochistan. The later propagated the issue in US political circles to its maximum to malign Pakistan without realizing the actual situation and ignored the brutalities of Baloch militant groups supported by these Baloch sub nationalist leaders.

 

US Congressman Louie Gohmert found it opportune to deliver a highly venomous speech on 30 Jan 2014 in the US House of Representatives on Balochistan situation, citing his meeting with the Baloch sub nationalists’ leadership. Gohmert read out an article of Tarek Fateh (Canada based Ahmedi and sympathizer of Baloch sub nationalists), published by the Toronto Sun on 28 January 2014, criticizing US for ignoring the mass graves issue during US Senator John Kerry’s meeting with Pakistan’s National & Foreign Affairs Advisor Sartaj Aziz on 27 January 2014. He criticized Pakistan over the alleged human rights violations and strongly endorsed Baloch sub nationalists’ separatist agenda of Independent Balochistan.

 

However, the recent Seminar “Peace and Prosperity in Balochistan” in Quetta Serena Hotel has proved that security situation in the province as well as confidence of people has improved. The US/Western so called champions of democracy like Louie Gohmert must be repenting now on their wrong doings in the past.

 

Though government has stabilized its writ in the province yet the local disgruntled Nawabs, Sardars, tribal feuds, sectarian and ethnic divide are still posing serious threat and being exploited by the external forces to achieve their nefarious designs in Balochistan. People of Balochistan are being deprived from the fruits of development and prosperity. Hectic diplomatic efforts are needed to thwart any more bloodshed in the province. All the regional and extra regional stake holders to be taken on board including  like Iran, UAE, Afghanistan, India and USA to take the agenda of CPEC ahead. It may usher an era of peace and prosperity in the region in general and Balochistan in particular.

The writer is freelance journalist based at London.

 

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