Balochistan needs attention before it too late
April 13, 2012
The issue of Balochistan never had gained so much importance as it has these days both domestically as well as internationally. But this much attention can only be beneficial if it helps the baloch people get rid of their miseries.
Law enforcing agencies are also analyzing minutely the situation in Balochistan while the concern over the Balochistan situation is also echoing in the courts as well.
Chief Justice of Pakistan Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry visited Balochistan this month and heard several petitions regarding the law and order situation in the province at the Quetta registry of the Supreme Court.
Hearing the petition filed by Advocate Hadi Shakeel, former president of the Balochistan High Court Bar Association Chief Justice said that the dumping of bodies of missing people in Balochistan was creating hatred and sending a wrong signal across the country.
“The bodies of 204 missing persons were found in different parts of Balochistan over the past two years,” Advocate General of Balochistan Amanullah Kanrani informed a three-judge bench headed by the Chief Justice and including Justice Tariq Pervez and Justice Khilji Arif Hussain.
Justice Iftikhar regretted that no cases had been registered against those involved in kidnapping people and dumping mutilated bodies. “If someone is involved in any crime he has to be produced before court for trial.”
He expressed displeasure over a report on security situation in the province over the past two years and ordered that a complete report be submitted at the next hearing on April 5.
The report was submitted by the advocate general and home and tribal affairs secretary of Balochistan. It does not have details about the 204 bodies found and 80 people kidnapped in the province during that period.
Advocate General Amanullah Kanrani said the number of bodies found in the province had now declined.
The chief justice said the bodies of 53 people were yet to be identified, adding that the report revealed that 80 people had been kidnapped and yet the advocate general claimed that the situation was improving. “Human being is human being; do you know when a family receives the dead body of their loved one, how they suffer; can you imagine. The provincial government appears to be helpless in maintaining the law and order situation. Where is the writ of the government?” he asked.
The chief justice regretted that there was nothing in the report about the recent Spiny Road incident in which six people were killed.
He said there were reports that some provincial ministers were involved in kidnappings for ransom. “If ministers are involved in such crimes then what a police inspector would do.”
He asked the Balochistan police chief why he did not record the statement of the home minister who had disclosed that three provincial ministers were involved in kidnapping for ransom.
“What roles security institutions, including the ISI, MI and IB, are playing for restoring peace in the province? A citizen kidnapped from Quetta is recovered in Waziristan,” the chief justice regretted.
The chief justice also expressed dissatisfaction over a report on the killing of wife and daughter of Bakhtair Khan Domki in Karachi and ordered submission of a complete report on April 5.
About violence in Karachi, the chief justice said a Supreme Court judgment on the issue had not been implemented in letter and sprit.
“Had the detailed verdict been implemented there would have been no killing of innocent people in Karachi,” he said, adding that the court had ordered the government to remove all ‘no-go’ areas, deweaponise the city and stop politicising police for a durable peace in Karachi.
Hearing another case on deteriorating law and order situation in Balochistan along with Justice Khilji Arif Hussain and Justice Tariq Pervez CJ expressed his resentment over police’s failure to recover the missing persons and warned that if the seven people abducted from the provincial capital were not produced before the court, all police officers concerned, including the inspector general (IG) of Balochistan Police would be suspended.
A group of women told the court that a team of Frontier Corps personnel and intelligence agencies had raided their house in Sariab area on March 1, and abducted ten people. They said that three of the abducted people were later released, while seven were still missing.
Balochistan Chief Secretary Babar Yaqoob Fateh Muhammad, Police IG Rao Amin Hashim, Home Secretary Naseebullah Bazai, Balochistan Advocate General Amanullah Kanrani and High Court Bar Association President Zahoor Ahmed Shahwani were present in the court. During the hearing, Bazai informed that 139 dead bodies had so far been recovered from various parts of Balochistan.
Expressing his anger, the CJP said the police had neither investigated the cases of recovered dead bodies nor arrested anyone. He said that police officials were not serious in investigating the cases of recovered dead bodies, while the issue was going out of proportion. The court ordered the police to thoroughly investigate each dead body found in the province and submit challans in the court within the stipulated period. It also directed the Balochistan Police IG to take action against the ministers involved in kidnappings for ransom.
“It has also been accused that some people of law enforcement agencies were involved in such incidents,” Chaudhry said. The statement made by provincial minister Mir Sadiq Umrani on the floor of assembly was also read out in the court. The minister had claimed that he was going to Quetta from Kalat along with some other ministers when they witnessed a team of Frontier Corps personnel lining up two Baloch youth on the main national highway and shooting them dead. The minister also claimed that the next morning, the dead bodies of the two boys were found in the same area. While addressing the Home secretary, the chief justice remarked, “Like me, you are also a son of the soil; don’t such incidents hurt you?”
The chief justice also expressed his resentment over the absence of the attorney general after learning that he had gone to attend the memo commission. The CJP asked if the memo commission was above the Supreme Court. He also ordered the AG to appear before the bench on Friday. He said that as Frontier Corps was also being accused in the recovery of dead bodies therefore the FC inspector general should also provide explanation in this regard. The CJP asked how many families had been given compensation after the recovery of the dead bodies of their relatives. The Home secretary submitted that that no such policy existed, to which the CJP remarked that the relatives of the missing persons should be given compensation.
On April 6 leader of the Jamiat Ulema-e-Pakistan (JUP) was killed in a firing incident on Saryab Road in Quetta.
The provincial leader, identified as Maulana Muhammad Qasim, was also the Khateeb of Jamia Masjid Noorani. It had earlier been reported that Qasim was the provincial chief.
He was on his way to lead Friday prayers when he was targeted by unidentified assailants on motorbikes. The body was shifted to the Sandeman Hospital for autopsy. “He was shot in the head and neck,” doctors at the hospital told reporters.
Markets in the area were shut down after the incident and protesters burnt tyres on the road.
Talking to reporters, JUP’s Balochistan chapter president Abdul Qudus Sasoli said it was not the first incident where JUP leaders had been targeted. Party leaders Iftikhar Habibi, Rafiq Sasoli and Maulana Kabir Qambrani were also killed under similar circumstances in Quetta over the past five months. “The government and law enforcement agencies have failed to protect the lives of the common people in Quetta. No one is safe here,” he claimed.
Earlier, two people were shot dead after assailants barged into a medical store and shoe shop on Mecangi Road.
Two mutilated bodies were found in the Kanak area of Mastung, about 40 kilometres off Quetta. According to an official of the Balochistan Levies, some passers-by spotted two bodies dumped in a deserted location in Kanak – the electoral constituency of Balochistan Chief Minister Nawab Muhammad Aslam Khan Raisani – and informed the Levies Station.
The bodies were initially taken to a nearby state-run hospital in Mastung and later shifted to the Sandeman Hospital Quetta for autopsies.
According to spokesperson of National Party the target killings of ideological political and nationalists workers is a conspiracy to crush the nationalist struggle and political awareness but we will not let such conspiracies be foiled.
According to analysts it is the responsibility of the state to protect the lives of its citizens but ironically here no state institution is willing to take on this responsibility and no seriousness is being implied on this matter. A media frenzy is taking place everybody is on a race to become a part of headlines. If the non seriousness continues to prevail than the fire engulfing Balochistan would not come under the control of anyone.