Nation shocked and grieved
Posted by Javed Iqbal
Tuesday, June 18, 2013 – In the wee hours on Saturday morning, propelled grenade attacks by the militants destroyed Quaid-e-Azam’s residency in Ziarat, where he spent the last days of his life along with his sister Fatima Jinnah before moving to Karachi. A police constable deployed outside the Quaid’s residency was also killed in the attack while another sustained injuries. All items used by the Quaid inside the residency including chairs, beds, and historic photographs of the founder were burnt in the resulting fire.
The Balochistan Liberation Army has claimed the responsibility for this heinous act. As if this was not enough for the shock and grief to the nation, at least 25 people including deputy commissioner of Quetta and 14 female students of women’s university were killed later in the day when a bomb tore through the bus. It was followed by a suicide attack and a gun-battle in the Bolan Medical college hospital where injured students were taken for treatment.
Banned outfit Lashkar-i-Jhangvi has reportedly claimed responsibility for the bomb blasts. According to a report, after the female suicide bomber blew up herself in the bus, a second male bomber followed suit and struck inside the crowded Bolan Medical Complex Hospital to wreak maximum damage. President Asif Ali Zardari, Prime Minister Mian Nawaz Sharif, Chief Justice of Pakistan Mian Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry have strongly condemned the attack on the residence of Quaid-i-Azam in Ziarat (Quetta) followed by blast in women university’s bus and shootout at Bolan Medical Complex where the injured students were shifted for treatment. It has to be mentioned that judiciary has had many hearings of missing persons’ case to dispense justice. But insurgents feel emboldened when they find sympathy in political parties, intelligentsia and judiciary.
In a talk show titled ‘apas ki bat’ in a private channel, pseudo-journalist Hamid Mir and pseudo-intellectual Kamran Shafi, instead of condemning the heinous acts of the insurgents and terrorists, chose to malign the ISI and law enforcing agencies. They said that mutilated bodies were found even after the nationalist parties formed the government. By doing so they are advancing the cause of the separatists. In fact, scions of dissident sardars had warned those who participated in elections, and even now they are bent upon creating turmoil in Balochistan.
By attacking the Quaid’s residency in Ziarat, they have tried to strike at the very foundation of Pakistan. Yet, some anchorpersons and analysts accuse intelligence agencies of either arresting or killing nationalists. They are hiding the facts that many missing persons are in Ferrari Camps/Detention Centres being run by dissident Baloch Sardars and insurgents. But a few anchorpersons, analysts and panelists are bent upon painting the armed forces and agencies in poor light.
Hamid Mir, anchorperson and columnist of a large media group in his column titled ‘Pachtaway’ (repentances), had apprised the audience about details of ceremony held to honor friends of Bangladesh on 24th March 2013. He had gone to Dhaka to receive the award of his father Late Professor Waris Mir, who stood for freedom of speech and was against military action in former East Pakistan. However, the posterity would decide whether he was friend of Bangladesh or traitor to Pakistan.
Hamid Mir takes refuge behind judiciary by praising it profusely, which of course it deserves; but at the same time he denigrates armed forces. He should have noted what Chief Justice of Pakistan Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, during hearing of a case at Quetta Registry with regard to deteriorating law and order situation in Balochistan, had remarked: “Nobody would be allowed to malign judiciary and armed forces of the country”.
In 2010, Hamid Mir was accused of passing on some information to Punjabi Taliban on the basis of which former ISI official Khawaja Kahlid was murdered. Usama Khalid son of Khwaja Khalid had demanded of the Supreme Court to take suo motu notice of Mr. Hamid Mir’s tape in which he allegedly misled and provoked the Taliban militants against his father that resulted in his murder. In the tape, Hamid Mir was reported to have persuaded the Taliban spokesman that Khalid Khwaja was a CIA agent and front man of Mansoor Ijaz – an associate of international Qadiani network. Furthermore, he said that Khwaja and his wife had played ignominious role during Lal Masjid standoff. On many websites and blogs Hamid Mir was criticized for, what was described, his act of watanfroshi or subversive behaviour, and also for being instrumental in the murder of Khalid Khwaja.
Balochistan province, being strategically-located and rich in mineral wealth, attracts many an alien’s eyes. India is reportedly promoting terrorism in Balochistan through its information centres in Afghanistan. Some Baloch rebels are ensconced in England, and others in America to organize their movement for greater Balochistan. The Baloch Society of North America held international conference on Balochistan to advance their agenda of independent Balochistan. Dissidents are also active in the UK, Canada and elsewhere. After the coalition government led by the nationalist parties is in place, the dissidents should have given the government a chance to bring about peace in Balochistan. In fact, they want to keep the province in turmoil in order to prove that the only solution to the problem is independence of Balochistan.
The situation calls for extraordinary vigil, intelligent political initiatives, imaginative administrative moves and robust development efforts. Chief Minister Abdul Malik does have the vision to meet these challenges. Unfortunately, the previous provincial government did not spend hundreds of billions allocated for the development of Balochistan during the last five years. In the past, both the Islamabad and Quetta hierarchs had abdicated responsibilities to the army for the things they themselves must be doing. And it was the army which was opening up schools and technical and vocational training institutes, and establishing facilities for specialized education of Baloch students in disciplines of particular relevance to the province. That said, development of Balochistan is the only way to win hearts and minds of the people, and to rid them of servitude of sardars.(Mohammad Jamil)