Four woman forcefully abducted in broad day light by the Pakistan Army in two separate raids. The son of one of these abducted women protests, and so this boy, who is a minor, is dragged along with the women, dumped into military vehicles and driven away. Welcome to Balochistan! Rapes, murders, forced abductions and targeted killings by the Pakistan Army are a routine in this land.
Forced kidnappings happened a couple of days ago and the four women and minor boy are still “missing”. Family members fear that the women will be raped and tortured before being killed, and then dumped away. When the women’s neighbours, well-wishers and Baloch local residents reached out to the Pakistan Army to release the abducted women, the men in uniform simply laughed and told the Baloch nationals to wait for another such “raid”.
In fact, these human rights violations happen on a daily basis across this rugged region of Balochistan that’s spread over 3.47 lakh sq. km. comprising almost half of Pakistan’s geographical area. Balochistan is home to $1 trillion worth precious metals, natural gas and minerals. But instead of developing the region, all that successive Pakistan governments at Islamabad and Pakistan Army have done is to loot Balochistan of its natural resources. Both Islamabad and Rawalpindi have milked Balochistan of its resources to fill in their coffers and have denied the Baloch of their basic rights. Even the basic demands of Baloch nationals such as clean drinking water, food, healthcare and education is denied. Any demand for food, water, education or healthcare facilities is crushed with an iron fist. And the most potent weapon that Pakistan Army uses to subjugate Balochistan is Rape and Murder.
The abduction of four Baloch women and a minor boy is the latest in this series of atrocities by Pakistan Army. These women were abducted during two separate illegal raids in the Awaran district of Balochistan. These unarmed, hapless women were dragged out from their homes by Pakistan Army soldiers, carried away in military vehicles and dumped in central military camp of Awaran.
Amidst rising Baloch voices against these illegal and unjust raids the Pakistan Army adopted a new ploy and declared that these women were terrorists. After floating this fictitious story, Pakistan Army soldiers then subjected these women to extreme mental and physical torture for several hours in solitary confinement.
Dr Allah Nazar Baloch, head of Balochistan Liberation Front (BLF) who is leading the freedom struggle of Balochistan has condemned this incident in very strong words. He said, “…Pakistan Army considers unilateral implementation of our war rules and Baloch values as our weakness and is now targeting our honour and dignity.”
Dr Allah Nazar added that the forceful abduction of women is not the first of its kind and may not be the last. “Several hundreds of Baloch women have been abducted by Pakistani troops and locked up in torture chambers. My wife and martyr Aslam Baloch’s sister were kidnapped and tortured by the Pakistan Army and intelligence agencies with the help of local informants. The entire family of Shaheed Ghaus Bakhsh continues to suffer under military detention in Mashkay. The family is missing for more than a year. The wife of Mir Liaquat Sajidi was abducted last year and kept in secret prison for a few days and released. Bibi Nazal Baloch was abducted and tortured by the same forces earlier. In Turbat, our girls were kept under siege for several days. In Karachi, Bibi Farah was seriously injured after being thrown down from the third floor of a building. Women and children were martyred and injured during the bombing of Mir Sahu’s house in Tank, Mashkay. Women were martyred in bombardment in Kohlu and Dera Bugti. Bibi Halima was martyred after her home was attacked in Basima. The list of such tragic events is too long. The difference is that this time the Pakistan Army has made its arrest public under its new ploy,” Dr Allah Nazar went on to recount several cases of abductions and targeted killings committed by the Pakistan Army on Baloch nationals.
This list of human rights violations, rapes, murders and killings by the Pakistan Army in Balochistan is very long and yet not much is talked about it in international forums. One wonders why isn’t there any uproar over these blatant abduction of women in Balochistan? There are hardly any protests or demonstrations anywhere in the world to free these hapless women. Of course, not much can be expected from the Pakistani media but what about the global champions of human rights organisations. Why do they choose to stay mum on these daily rapes, kidnapping, murders and targeted disappearances in Balochistan?
“Despite such state of affairs in Balochistan all the religious parties have sealed their lips. They create a huge uproar about Kashmir and Palestine. But do they have the spine to tell the truth about what is going on in Balochistan? Can they tell truth to the world about how Pakistan Army is treating the people of Balochistan? These so-called custodians of Islam make a lot of noise at the burning of the Holy Quran in Norway, but they maintain silence on the burning of the Holy Quran by Pakistan Army during their military operations in Balochistan. This is the prime example of hypocrisy of these so-called clerics and federalists. History and the Baloch nation will never forgive them.”
The anger of Dr Allah Nazar is understandable. Atrocities of these type anywhere else creates a furore in the civilized world. And yet the world refuses to take note of the atrocities in Balochistan. The world and the champions of human rights are still maintaining a deafening silence.
“Our boys, girls, and women are not safe. I believe that all the parties, involved in the liberation of Balochistan will have to modify their policies and formulate a comprehensive strategy to prevent abduction, arrest and disappearance of women. The time has come to hit the enemy’s pain-points,” Dr Allah Nazar Baloch said in an obvious reference to Pakistani deep state.