“Pakistan army enjoys the largest sum of GDP in the name of defence; However, could not protect us from a unleashed bands of thugs” – Jalila Haider
After 2004 Quetta carnage when Ashura procession was attacked which left 50 dead and more than 100 wounded (all of victims were from Hazara community), once again Hazara community in Balochistan came under intensive attacks in 2011 apparently by Sunni extremist groups Lashkar-e- Jangvi, and its affiliates which enjoy the backing of Pakistan Army. In reaction of incessant killings of their loved ones, Hazaras set in a protest at Quetta with their corpses and refused to bury the dead bodies till the government wouldn’t arrest the culprits and provide them justice. Ironically, then Chief Minister of Balochistan Aslam Raissani commented, “ what can I do, to provide you trucks load of tissue papers to wipe yours tears.” perhaps his remarks was a laughing stock for Pakistani media and its viewers, in reality Raissani meant more than that— a clear message to tell that civilian government was acting as a puppet that threads were being pulled somewhere else – General Headquarters (GHQ).
Might be that time it was a state of utter confusion and ambiguity for Hazaras to think that for what reason they are being targeted, but this was not the same case with a Baloch; one could easy tell you that the targeting of innocent Hazaras was a counter narrative to suppress the Baloch freedom struggle and fool the world that the ongoing wave of insurgency is nothing but a sectarian violence across the Balochistan. Surely, in some degree they were successful in their strategy. Therefore, now or than, till date Hazara community is under attack. But now on it becomes clear to them that who is behind their genocide.
However, now Hazaras are fully convinced they are being targeted by whom, And in what corner the assailants come, attack, kill and escape; why till date a single killer has not be arrest? And most importantly now they realise fully who is masterminding their genocide? Implied to this when currently once again Hazaras were targeted, their frustration and continuous tolerance exploded into utter anger and dare to call the role of Pakistan Army into questions.
Accordingly, Advocate Jalila Haider, a brave social activist from Hazara community has decided to set on hunger strike to death before Quetta Press Club prompted in after the targeted killing of Hazaras in Quetta, and seeking justice for the thousands of Hazara families those lost their loved ones in various terrorist attacks carried out by extremist groups that suspiciously enjoying the support of military and intelligence agencies. In her video message she clearly expressed her reservations by saying that the Pakistan army enjoys the largest sum of GDP in the name of defence; However, could not protect them from a unleashed bands of thugs. She also asked Pakistan Chief Of Army Staff to visit them in civilian dress rather than donning army uniforms because they are not going to salute him in uniform.
This stance of Comrade Jalila Haider shows that the Hazara community no longer trust on Army and other security forces; Rather, they are convinced, here or there, the ongoing genocide of Hazara community in Balochistan is a well directed strategy against them for the grand purpose to flair up sectarian violence with the multipurpose strategy.
Firstly, as it mentioned to counter the Baloch freedom struggle by creating a state of uncertainty in Balochistan that can shadow the success of Baloch struggle as Pakistan Army begun to play this card from first half of 2000 and that is continued till day. It is harden to mention here that this policy would continue as it as in future till the Balochistan Movement is intact and there is not even a bleak chance of ending it against Hazara community. Secondly, this policy of Hazara genocide has been a safe passage for Pakistan to churn out a narrative internationally that Balochistan is going through a waves of sectarian violence that not only affected the only very province, hence the ghost of sectarian violence is hunted the entire country. In this regard The controlled media of Pakistan acted as second paddle to draw a picture of make believe not only in Pakistan but also across the world. Thirdly, the killing of Hazara can easily justify the presence of Army and FC in Balochistan that under the guise of protection can extend the level of operation throughout Balochistan as it did previously by legitimating its operation under National Action Plan.
However, this policy is proved fallacious. Now people like Jalila Haider and thousands of other Hazaras fully know that who is directly responsible for their killings, and somehow they also can understand why the are being made scapegoat? Perhaps this is a clarion call to Pakistan Army for another uprising— the Hazara Awakening.
The writer is a political activist, literary critics and a freelance journalist, he can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org