Balochistan yet to receive fruits of democracy: Mengal

Akhtar Mengal

 

 

Balochistan National Party (BNP) chief Sardar Akthar Mengal on Monday said Balochistan was yet to receive the fruits of democracy.

Addressing a book launching ceremony, he said “jammers” had been placed over democracy in the troubled province.

Mengal alleged that 65 people went missing and 13 mutilated bodies were found during the last 25 days.

He said the only way forward for peace in Balochistan was the acceptance of six-point demand of Baloch people.

“Only then can Baloch people trust the federation and come to the negotiating table,” he added.

Appreciating the book titled “Balochistan: Azadi Sai Subai Bai-Ikhtiari Tak” written by eminent writer Ahmad Salim, Mengal said the writer had truly documented the history of Balochistan.

He was of the view that Balochistan was repeatedly invaded not only by military dictators but civilian democratic governments as well. Sardar Mengal called for the need to change biased “thought process” against Balochistan, particularly in Punjab, which was bent on capturing the resources and oppressing the dissenting voices.

The Baloch sardar was of the view that instead of addressing root cause of Balochistan problem, the government was suggesting fancy projects for Balochistan to pacify the agitated people.

He said the operation was still in progress in parts of Balochistan.

“Abducting people and dumping mutilated bodies, while calling for negotiation, would not work anymore,” he added.

He said the Baloch people “can only think of sitting at the negotiating table if their demands, as mentioned in my six points, are accepted”.

Mengal demanded all military operations against the Baloch should immediately be suspended and asked for producing all missing persons before a court of law.

He condemned the killing of Baloch people and demanded prosecution of those responsible for inhuman torture, killing and dumping of dead bodies of the Baloch political leaders and activists.

Mengal also demanded disbanding proxy death squads operating under the supervision of establishment across the province.

He called for giving complete freedom to political parties and rehabilitating thousands of displaced Baloch living in appalling condition.

Mengal criticised the recent election process in Pakistan, saying “It is unfortunate that even today, democracy in Pakistan is at the behest of establishment.”

“Elections in Balochistan were not transparent and we experienced widespread interference, threats and rigging where the results were withheld to up to 18 days without any reason,” he added.

However, Mengal expressed his commitment to remain part of the democratic process despite all injustice.

“It is now up to the federation to demonstrate serious attitude, otherwise it’s already too late to win the Baloch people back,” he said.

 



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