2004-08-24 12:00:25 UTC
Balochis? For India to ignore this holocauste, is to be as guilty as
the Punjabi-Paki perpetrators of this despicable crime.
It is rather amusing that the Indian Cong(I) govt which gets its
knickers in a knot over every time a Muslim trips and falls down in
India, has encouraged its family-cat to get its tongue, when it comes
to the genocide of Balochis in Pakistan.
If the pseudo-"secular" politicians of India have any kind of human
decency or the remotest "care" for Muslims, they will rise to this
genocide and help the Balochis to defend themselves against their
genocidal Punjabi-Pak slave-runners.
What the Pak newspaper reports below, is a fraction of the real
genocide of innocent people occuring in Balochistan
* * * * * * *
From a Pak newspaper:
WAJID SHAMSUL HASAN
Pakistan's largest and resource-rich province - Balochistan - is on
the verge of an implosion. It is much similar to that of former East
Pakistan of 1971 when Bangla leader Sheikh Mujibur Rahman had been
fervently pleading for a political settlement of political issues
while the military junta under General Yahya had nothing else to offer
but a full-fledged army operation on war footing to the country's
majority population demanding its democratic rights. One of the
veteran Baloch leaders, Sardar Ataullah Mengal, has come out
forcefully against what he calls blatant invasion of his province by
the army unmindful of the wishes of the people and being inconsiderate
of the mounting problems that are being faced by them.
Speaking at a seminar the other day organized by the Pakistan
Oppressed Nations Movement (PONM) on constitutional, political,
economic and cultural exploitation of oppressed nations in the
perspective of facts and figures and its solution in the light of
international principles, former Chief Minister warned Musharraf junta
that the situation in Balochistan might lead to disintegration of the
country. And, according to him, it would be the military-led
government and not the nationalists who would be responsible for any
damage to the integrity of the country. He called upon the powers that
be to hang him for his resistance against what he claimed another
military operation in his province. "I will love to die for my own
people, my own land and my province".
Although very old and mild in temperament, the angry tenor and tune of
his warning seems to be a manifestation of the deep wounds of
exploitation and oppression inflicted on his people. His infuriated
words seem to be the sound of a death-knell and they had an undertone
telling the rulers to stop it before it is too late. Surely, Islamabad
would rush to brand it as outright rebellious, its under-current
reflected sincerity of purpose and a desire to save the situation much
similar to the pleadings by Sheikh Mujibur Rahman before he and the
majority population of the country was pushed into a irreversible
The message from him was clear: don't waste time, adopt right policies
rather than threaten Balochs with the language of guns, boom, disaster
and doom. By refusing to condemn those who were attacking military
personnel as freedom fighters, Sardar Mengal also appealed to all the
Sindhi, Baloch, Seraiki and Pakhtoon nationalists to "retaliate
against the army with stones if they were not in a position to take up
In his passionate speech Mengal was also very critical of the
Punjabis. According to him he had developed bitter feelings against
the Punjabis because they were helping the military to crush the
oppressed nations. He said he was being asked to declare the Baloch
warriors attacking troops in Balochistan as "terrorists". He reminded
his friends in Punjab that those who have taken up arms in Balochistan
had done so for their own protection exercising their right to
self-defence and as such they cannot be described as terrorists.
Mengal said if he could not fight against the armed forces with his
own hands because of his old age, it did not mean that he would
condemn those who were showing defiance and offering their lives for
the Baloch rights. "I am a honorable man and will never condemn the
retaliation by the Baloch people."
There cannot be two views that Pakistan's 1973 Constitution
unanimously adopted by the elected representatives of the people of
the four federating units, now distorted and disfigured beyond
recognition in favor of a unitary government by General Pervez
Musharraf to make himself all powerful through the controversial and
obnoxious 17th Amendment, has been made to lose its efficacy as the
unifier of the nation as designed by its framing fathers.
In the light of its present fractured shape, Sardar Mengal has a
justifiable point in assailing the present rulers who wrongly accuse
nationalists of violating the Constitution when Musharraf and his
coterie have been responsible for disparaging it. Not only that, by
violating it they have even committed an act of treason under Article
6 of the Constitution.
Time and again saner and patriotic elements in the country have been
warning the military establishment not to play with the 1973
Constitution. It is generally perceived that a grand document
conceived by the greatest political and constitutional brains of the
time had resolved the otherwise country-breaking question of the
quantum of provincial autonomy much to the satisfaction of the
federating units and that it cannot be rewritten.
By destroying the Constitution perhaps the greatest disservice has
been done by the rulers who have dealt a fatal blow to the very
integrity of the country. According to Sardar Mengal and many others
like him, the military junta has damaged the Constitution to such an
extent that now it was beyond correction and the country needed a new
Constitution based on the principle of equality.
Some leaders in Sindh are even suggesting, besides many other drastic
and radical provisions, that the new constitution, whenever it is
framed, should incorporate a clause that would give right to secession
to the smaller provinces in case of another coup or Punjabi military
take over in the country.
It is good to know that although very bitter Sardar Mengal has not yet
endorsed the proposed provision of secession in case of yet another
military take over. Voicing the aspirations of the smaller provinces,
Mengal says that the nationalists only are demanding democracy and
their right to govern themselves.
According to Sardar Mengal Balochistan was being developed now because
it suited the Punjabis and the military, as they want to make it a
colony of the army and federation. Referring to those from Punjab who
want a dialogue between Islamabad and Quetta, Sardar Mengal called
upon them that if they want to serve and save the country then they
should not offer to hold a dialogue with nationalist forces in
Balochistan. Instead, they should ask General Musharraf to hand over
power to the people. If the General does not do that "he will be held
responsible for the break up of the country."
Sardar Mengal has made his point for the need of a new constitution in
view of the fact that 1973 Constitution has ceased to be a document
that was designed to be the unifier of the federating units and had
panaceas to their socio-economic and political problems. It has now
ended up as a constitution full of distortions and a destroyer of the
nation, thanks to the 17th Amendment.
However, it was Pakhtoon leader Mahmood Khan Achakzai who hit the nail
right on the head at the historic PONM seminar. Achakzai's observation
pertains to the long-lasting issue that has remained unresolved since
the assassination of Pakistan's first Prime Minister Liaquat Ali Khan
at the hands of the power troika inherited from the British Raj.
Indeed, as Mahmud Achakzai put it, "time has come to decide as to who
is the ruler in Pakistan its 140 million people or the million
Like Mengal, Mahmud Achakzai, too, underscored that genuine
nationalists' demands must not be misconstrued as an act of rebellion
against the State. Rather, nationalists' point of view need be given a
serious thought in the correct perspective. Nationalists, according to
Achakzai, were the most peaceful people as they were struggling for
their right to govern themselves.
Mahmud Khan nailed the canard by the rulers and their media mongers
that the nationalists were traitors out there to destroy Pakistan.
According to him, nationalists are patriotic Pakistanis and they do
not want to break the country since Pakistan was their own motherland
and they were the sons of the soils.
However, he warned Islamabad's military establishment that the
nationalist forces have come to the conclusion that they would no more
accept the rule of only one powerful ethnic group that was supporting
the military establishment to keep others subjugated as it tried to do
in former East Pakistan.
Before water gets over the head, opinion makers in Punjab and others
including its politicians who matter, must lend their ears to the
nationalist voices from the smaller provinces. Their grievances
emanating from their growing sense of alienation, deprivation and rule
by might that considers itself right and above the general will of the
people, need to be listened to rather dismiss them as acts of treason
or revolt by a "handful of miscreants".
Leaders like Sardar Ataullah Mengal are a breed that is going extinct.
And we need to gratefully remember the time after the most ignominious
surrender by our drunkard generals in Dhaka when smaller provinces
were most conveniently placed to seek independence from an army that
had been handed a humiliating defeat by the Indian military.
Indeed, if the elected leadership of Balochistan, Sindh and NWFP
(Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, Khan Wali Khan, Mufti Mahmud, Mir Ghaus Bux
Bizenjo, Sardar Ataullah Mengal, Professor Ghafoor and others) had
sought to break away from Punjab or the federal Pakistan, then it
would have been all over without firing a shot since Pakistani
military establishment had ceased to exist.
Its generals, under pressure from their own Young Turks, were left
with no other option but to beg of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto to save the
It was their sheer greatness and selflessness that those leaders
shunned independence for their provinces coming to them on the
platter. Not only that, they reaffirmed their faith in Quaid's
Pakistan by unanimously steering the Constitution Bill of 1973 to
national acceptability-as a document that resolved the question of the
quantum of provincial autonomy in which the federating units were to
enjoy more autonomy than enjoyed by the states in the United States of
America. The 1973 Constitution, indeed, had come to serve as a greater
binding force than religion. In accordance with the national
aspirations it also laid the foundation for fostering a unique
phenomenon of unity in diversity.
Had these leaders bickered and not joined heads and hands in framing
the Constitution of 1973, then the break up of the country would have
been a foregone conclusion sooner than later. And, it would have meant
for the 90,000 generals and soldiers of Pakistani military many years
of rotting in the Indian PoW camps. It would have also led to the
dismemberment of the heavy weight military establishment.
Since the situation in Balochistan is a fast ticking time bomb we
should remember the pertinent observation of American philosopher
George Santayana "that those who cannot remember the past are
condemned to repeat it." I am reminded of the historic letter of one
of the founding fathers of Pakistan, Hussain Shaheed Suhrawardy, from
his jail cell in Karachi to Field Marshal Ayub Khan. In that,
Suhrawardy had warned the then military dictator that by marginalizing
and destroying him in Pakistan's politics Ayub, in fact, was
destroying the last of the bridges that was keeping East and West
After him, indeed, was deluge. It seems General Pervez Musharraf is
hell-bent on repeating history. The sordid manner he has been trying
to destroy the only "Wafaq-ki-Zangeer" Benazir Bhutto and the
treatment as traitor of a great man like Sardar Ataullah seems almost
a scheme to fold up Pakistan. And God forbid, the on-going military
operation in Balochistan could possibly be the beginning of the end.