Stepping foot in Balochistan after an extended absence is an indescribable feeling that stirs a gust of emotions. Perhaps it’ll be the reflection of the reaction to the agony and disposition of indigenous people. Let me say, at the risk of being called a nationalist, that each and every particle of clay and every layer of rock of my homeland is being smelled by my spirit.
“The Baloch will wear a broken shoe but buy a new book.” – Wusatullah Khan
Once again, the resilient people of this land—yes, the resilient people in the state of adversity—became the central subject of contemplation within the realm of my imagination. The reason why I called the people of Balochistan “Resilient” is that they have not bowed down to the state’s subjugation till now since 1947. Particularly about Baloch people, Wusatullah Khan had once said that “The Baloch will wear a broken shoe but buy a new book.” This claim of Wusatullah Khan was proved in the three-day Ata Shad Literature Festival in Turbat, where, according to local media, books worth 3.5 million rupees were sold.
I went deep down dissecting the root causes of the curse of poverty, the malediction of homelessness, the tragic plight of enforced disappearances, the alarming wave of extrajudicial killings, unjust and exploitative extraction of resources, and the menace of tribal feuds. Hopelessly, all this will not settle down by mocking the indigenous people, saying that it is the sardars of Balochistan who are solely responsible for the miserable state of Balochistan. My friend! Who has extended the layer of protection to those so-called sardars? Who’s involved in rigging general elections just to put those sardars and nawabs in ministerial posts? Those sardars and nawabs are mouthpieces of Dark Forces, just like in the colonial era of Britishers.
Those who want to celebrate the cultural diversity of Balochistan should come and express solidarity with the families of forcibly disappeared.
Eid-ul-Adha of 23′ is going to be celebrated across the Muslim Globe on the 29th of June. Mama Qadeer Baloch, who’s the Vice-chairman of VBMP (Voice For Baloch Missing Persons), has announced a protest followed by a rally in Quetta on the very day of Eid. Those who want to celebrate the cultural diversity of Balochistan should come and express solidarity with the families of forcibly disappeared.
Dr. Shah Muhammad Marri, a renowned Marxist writer, told me that Farzana Majeed, who’s the sister of Missing Zakir Majid Baloch (student leader – abducted on June 08, 2023), has marched on foot about 8000km for the safe recovery of her brother. It is the longest March on Foot just after Mao Zedong in South Asia.
Without putting any stress, I would like to say unambiguously that the structure of the state operating in Balochistan is based completely on colonialism. They’ve set a relation of core and periphery from where they extract minerals and took them to the former. One has to put a radical alternative of redistribution of economic resources based on the principle of equity to counter all the above-mentioned issues.
Eqbal Khan is a student of Law in Government College University Lahore.