Left with no choice


Politicians in Balochistan to protest against LEAs

The country has been facing law and order situation for quite some time now, particularly the Balochistan province. It has been a victim of sectarianism, nationalist movements, separatists, terrorism, kidnappings, target killings and forced disappearances. Despite third government in power, nothing has changed; there seems to be no respite for the people of the province. Aggravating the situation is the role of law enforcement and security agencies who are working either against the interests of the province, and the state, or crossing the limits of the mandate given to them. In either case, the role they are playing screams incompetence.

In this background, the politicians of Balochistan have come up with a unique formula to protest against the apparent incompetence of LEAs and increasing incidents of lawlessness in the province: taking to the streets. Representatives of all political, nationalist and religious parties have announced to stage a joint sit-in outside the parliament on January 12 to protest against the kidnapping of Awami National Party (ANP) leader Arbab Abdul Zahir Kasi and others. Kidnappings for ransom and target killings, along with sectarian killings and forced disappearances are the issues that have plagued the largest province for far too long and need to be reined in. For months the SC has complained about the non-cooperation by the security agencies in Balochistan, it seems it is now the turn of the political parties, including those in power as well as in opposition, to voice the same complaint. Professional organisations of doctors and lawyers as well as human rights organisations have already expressed no confidence in LEAs. This is a clear message to the LEAs that their tactics and strategy is flawed, and that instead of protecting the innocent citizens, which by law and constitution they are bound to do, they have chosen the rogue path, breaking law as they try to fulfil their agenda.

The LEAs should realise that the public opinion cannot be ignored for long. It is the public that counts the most. It is they who are paying for them to do their job, and if they keep ignoring them the LEAs might soon have a situation much worse than just a stage-in at their hands. The federal government should also jump in, for it is already too late and letting the issue linger on would be detrimental to the stability of the federation. It should take all stakeholders on board and devise a strategy to quell fears of all concerned.