By Zohra Yusuf
If ever proof was needed that Punjab, Islamabad and the army are all that really matter in Pakistan, it is evident in the attention the two dharnas are getting, not only from the media but from politicians, the superior judiciary and those euphemistically referred to as the powers that be.
Contrast the non-stop interest in the two groups of protesters and their demands to the neglect that Balochistan is facing from each of the actors identified above.
It appears that neither the media nor the federal government nor the judiciary have a moment to spare for certain serious developments taking place in Balochistan.
Relatives reach Karachi on foot from Balochistan to raise their voice against tyranny and oppression. Hapless, they vow to march to Islamabad from here
Roughly, 18,000 Baloch nationalists have gone missing, including doctors, professors, politicians and students. Photos by the author.
“My father was talking on the phone, when a group of men suddenly came and started kicking and beating him up. All this happened in the blink of an eye and then they whisked him away. I and my uncle (the latter was just 13 then) were left completely shaken,” recalled 10-year old Ali Haider, while narrating the tale of how his father Ramzan Baloch was picked up.
The mala fide equating of the Baloch nationalists with the fundamentalist sectarian/jihadist outfits is aimed at maligning the Baloch
The raison d’être of human rights organisations under all circumstances should solely be the protection of human rights, without any deviation for any consideration. The members of these organisations should transcend all personal, political, social, national, economic and cultural prejudices to stand up for human rights because any departure leads to the irreparable loss of the credibility and influence of the organisation. The duty of these organisations is to defend human rights at all costs; they cannot and should not appear to be a party to any state or institution. Sadly, sometimes, these organisations — though ostensibly safeguarding human rights — get carried away by state-inspired narratives and the establishment’s interests, which they consciously or subconsciously subscribe to or identify with. Their becoming a party to a set of ideas irreversibly harms the struggle for protection of human rights.
Lahore, April 29: The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) has expressed serious concern at reports of apparently unauthorised raids and disappearance of several individuals in Kech and Gwadar districts of Balochistan and the killing of two political workers in Sindh.
In a statement issued on Monday, the Commission said: “It is a matter of great concern that the practices that have brought Pakistan to a precarious state continue even on the eve of the elections.
Author of ‘The Baloch who is not missing and others who are’ Mohammed Hanif speaking at the event organized by the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan at the Arts Council on Wednesday evening.—White Star
by Peerzada Salman
KARACHI: Speakers highlighted the issues related to the missing Baloch persons with reference to writer Mohammed Hanif’s book ‘The Baloch who is not missing and others who are’ at an event organised by the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) at the Arts Council on Wednesday evening.
The programme began with the screening of a BBC documentary on the subject.
Since 2005, the Human Rights Commission has been paying special attention to the increasingly alarming human rights situation in Balochistan. The Commission has organized four fact-finding missions to the province, the reports of which have been widely disseminated. A special desk on missing persons has also been set up in Quetta that maintains data on enforced disappearances and killings.
However, it was after reading Mohammed Hanif’s account of his meeting with Qadeer Baloch in Dawn that the idea of a book came to me. Hanif’s conversation with Qadeer Baloch about the disappearance and killing of his son, Jaleel Reiki, was moving – and disturbing – in a way that statistics can never be. I knew that if HRCP were to publish a book about the missing in Balochistan, Hanif would be the writer to put the stories together. He was quick to agree and joined HRCP’s fact-finding mission to Balochistan in May 2012.