by Hamid Abbasi
Another day breaks across Pakistan’s largest province, but unlike associated with the dawn, little hope accompanies it. Pakistan has again been bruised by a series of well-coordinated, implemented and executed events of terrorism on horrifying magnitude. The newly elected democratic government of Mr Sharif has hardly stepped into the corridors of influence but it has become evident that neither time nor the tide of terrorism and internal feuds will let them settle peacefully.
Sharif is not new to Pakistan’s problems nor will Baluchistan come as a surprise to him. For nearly a decade in exile and in opposition he had ample time to witness and assess the situation on ground, and it is about time that he through his actions and wisdom rises to the occasion. For many reasons all the ills of Baluchistan have been placed in the bucket of Pakistan’s military and associated intelligence agencies from quite some time, without mentioning that on paper at least a fully functional democratic provincial setup has been running for as long as I could recall my less than capable memory.
Yes, you got me! The famous tagline of all exist that they were never the representatives in true form, hand chosen by the forces in the far corner of Islamabad and garrison city of Rawalpindi to say the least, Agreed. But let us not forget that all of them, from time to time hailed from the most notable clans and families of Baluchistan, whether it be Marri, Bugti, Raisani or Mengal. In different eras and terms they all have represented Baluchistan where it matters (Governorships/ Chief Minister) and yet I have not seen one of them resigning on the context of non-cooperation from certain forces away from Baluchistan (May be a single odd example exists).
Baluchistan and its perils have been framed through a smoke screen as if they have no remedy or reason although based on facts, it stands out to be a simple issue which requires will and mettle. To start with, agencies have to and need to operate in Baluchistan as they are doing across Pakistan within their defined perimeters and jurisdiction. One cannot have peace in their absence nor in their absolute domination.
We come across on routine, thanks to flashing media screens and talk shows, of them being involved in acts ranging from disappearances to killings and harboring of elements which have now shaped into a mafia not to be challenged by the administration and government at all. I have all the heart to absorb arguments like these on daily basis but something toward the end of the day amazes me. I see Pakistani military and its agencies stretched to the maximum of their limitation in the last one decade, courtesy a restless Durand line, FATA, tribal agencies and Afghanistan.
On the absolute terms military and its agencies have disengaged themselves from politics in every form and nature in the past 5 years, truly reflected by the first democratic transition of power in Pakistan. Having done all goods, what has kept them glued to Baluchistan where clearly they have a past, a troubled present and an uncertain future? So the answer goes beyond this pointless campaigning of boys in uniform doing all the bad’s in Baluchistan. Also, all political forces have consensus that it’s a consortium of global intelligence, from Delhi to Tel Aviv which are “hot” in Baluchistan. In a case like this, does Baluchistan require a government without accepted ears and eyes or vice versa?. Attack on Quaid’s symbol is an attack on Pakistan. The reconciliation we talk so much is a truly accepted appeasement of BLA/ BRA. The only reconciliation Baluchistan requires is the integration of ordinary Baluchi into the accepted norms of governance that stands out to be politics, services, rights and justice.
Brahamdagh is a terrorist and so will he stand, supported amply by his friends in Delhi, Kabul and Washington. The precedence needs to be set by bringing him for justice, for all the barbarianism he has committed by propagating hate against a specific ethnic group, a nation etc. The rulers of Baluchistan themselves have to choose between the pressure from BRA/ BLA or empowerment through legitimacy granted by the constitution. Let’s put it this way. Brahamdagh Bugti can either be an offender or the shadow ruler of Baluchistan at one time. In the latter case, the talks of political empowerment through political process is in vain, fruitless.
Mr Sharif has to look into the killings of intellectuals, both male and female from one ethnicity which Brahamdagh and his men’s have executed in the past 5 years. The Baluch government should start from their rather than the other way around. There is no mercy or pardoning for the crimes against humanity, nor there should be. Pakistanis, each one of them stand by our Baluch brothers and sisters on this and the other tragedies in the past but our enemy has to be their enemy as well, without any discrimination.
Quaid’s monument attackers are just enemies of Pakistan, and so will it remain in the pages of history. Diplomatically wherever the financier and inspirer of these barbaric movement are stationed, let it be London or Geneva have to be extradited, at any cost. Their shouldn’t be a precedent where our “friends” should hail them as political refugees or asylum seeker. If this stands to be the standard of modern diplomacy and international affairs, one feels Mullah Omar was way ahead from all of us so called “civilized” for opening his doors of hospitality for OBL and company.
The previous government in Baluchistan carries the blame of all ills from the past 5 years. They were seen on record labelling each other as extortionists, kidnappers etc. When an elected government behaves in a manner like this, how would you expect the saviors of our life (Forces) to follow the laid down course of action? Ensure Baluchistan has the true representation in the corridors of power and no agency would like to stretch its muscles for no reason. Raisanani and company with proven cases of rampant corruption have been given a walk in the park in the name of political settlement whereas they should be brought to accountability for depriving Baluchis of their future. Their wisdom, mixed with that of Musharaff has left Gwadar and billions of untapped reserves in jeopardy, benefitting none. On immediate basis they need to be made operational to open gateway for empowerment of talented youth from Baluchistan.
Saving Baluchistan requires just acts, and justice goes equal for all not exclusively tilted for an ethnic group or inhabitants.