A significant development unfolded as Mahrang Baloch, a prominent figure from the Baloch Yakjehti Committee and PTM Chief Manzoor Pashteen have been booked in sedition charges in Kharipur, Sindh. Alongside Mahrang Baloch, nearly 300 unnamed campaigners advocating for the recovery of missing Baloch citizens, faced a sedition case at the Wada Machhiyoon police station in Khairpur district on Friday.
The First Information Report (FIR) filed by SHO Sarfaraz Khoso under Section 124-A of the Pakistan Penal Code alleged that Mahrang Baloch and her supporters incited the public to revolt against the state and military during recent protests in Islamabad, purportedly aligning with a foreign agenda.Notably, the FIR also implicated PTM chief Manzoor Pashteen, accusing him of instigating sentiments against the establishment.
However, latest report suggest that SSP Khairpur Dr. Samiulah Soomro has suspended the SHO after the deep concerns raised by the Baloch and Pashtuns.
After the FIR was registered, both Baloch and Pashtuns swiftly refuted the allegations, denouncing the FIR as baseless. They contended that neither Mahrang Baloch nor Manzoor Pashteen had set foot in Inner Sindh, asserting that the case against them was politically motivated to suppress nationwide protests organized by their respective organizations.
Interestingly, the action follows recent controversial statements made by caretaker PM Anwar-ul-haq Kakkar, who inaccurately cited the number of missing persons in a public statement and exhibited a lack of awareness regarding enforced disappearances. In another statement, he also reprimanded protestors to join the Baloch sarmachars instead.
Moreover, this move reflects a trend where Manzoor Pashteen faces recurrent arrest through fake FIRs, despite securing bail, indicating a concerning pattern of extra-judicial measures against peaceful protestors. The situation underscores the coercive tactics utilized by Pakistan, raising concerns about the stifling of dissenting voices in the country.