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Khan of Qallat had differences with the other Sardars even within his family on his decision to join with Pakistan. That is why just in a year time - in 1948 – insurgencies against Pakistani army and law enforcement agencies began. They have formed Baluch nationalist movement which was basically structured by Sardars to play double games in case if Pakistani government don’t follow their demands. Brother of Ahmed Yar Khan, Abdul Karim Khan denied the accord with Pakistan. He claimed that the Pakistani government forcibly asked Mir Ahmed Yar Khan to join Qallat with Pakistan. He declared separatist movement in 1948 and launched guerrilla war with his followers against Pakistan forces. Ahmed Yar Khan with other Sardars launched insurgency against Pakistan law enforcement agencies.
Since 1960 the insurgency against Pakistani forces gained substantial increase. Pakistani establishment instead of paying attention to win the hearts and minds of the common Baluch and activists, they engaged Sardars (tribes; Bughti, Mengal, Mari and so on) and tried to make them happy. That is why; the activists’ movement of independent Baluchistan never attracted by the common and poor people of Baluchistan and spread at the grass level. The goals of running these movements are to create insurgency by their paid insurgents and slaves when needed in order to threat and negotiate best deal with the Pakistani establishment.
The tale of Baluchistan’s uncertainty spread over half a century, it is not possible for me to sum-up all those mayhems in this write-up, however, I could boldly say that from 1973 military operation by Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto to 2005 military operation by General Pervez Musharraf, I found that that these operations were launched supposedly to eliminate the anti-Pakistan movements but basically behind these operations were the conflicts between the federal powers and the tribal powers of Baluchistan. These operations never end any trouble in Baluchistan instead created more hatred among the common Baluchis, at the same time, provided Sardars opportunities to use poor Baluch against Pakistani law enforcement agencies.
The unfortunate saga is that Pakistani army, civil bureaucracy, and selfish politicians are still putting their interest in front of the interest of the people of Baluchistan and the integrity of Pakistan. Today, they are still trying to negotiate with those Sardars (tribal) who have always looked their interest and protection on the cost of the betterment of the common people of Baluchistan. Due to the remote territory, less population and lack of access to the media, Baluchistan political disorder and instability have been hidden from the people of rest of the country particularly from the people of Sind and Punjab.
Today, some sections of Pakistani politics are blaming murder of Nawab Akbar Khan Bugti as the cause of current instability in Baluchistan. Akbar Khan Bugti had been the Governor and Chief Minister of Baluchistan in the past. When in power, he was asked in an interview by Emma Duncan, an international journalist, how many people has he killed by himself as a tribal leader, he replied he did not count. In 2005, Nawab Akbar Khan Bugti and Mir Baluch Marri gave a 15-point agenda to Musharraf’s government. Their demands included greater control of the province's resources and freezing of army bases were total threat to the sovereignty of Pakistan and the actual reasons behind these demands were that Bugti wanted power of Baluchistan and increase in the annual ransoms on name of protection of sensitive installations of the country. At the same time, they made several attacks on military convoys, helicopters and other vehicles killing many army personnel including Inspector and Deputy General of Frontier Corps. Nawab Akbar Khan Bugti was killed in 2006 during the fight between his militia and Pakistani forces.
Today, Bughti’s grandson, Brahamdagh Khan Bugti has now taken the role. He has stood-up threatening Pakistan’s sovereignty. Unfortunately, the political pundits in Pakistan who are calling him as representative of deprived Baluch must answer how many personnel of Pakistani law enforcement agencies they have already killed and how much damaged they have done to the infrastructure of Baluchistan. Brahamdagh’s and his partners don’t allow Pakistan flag to be waved in their jurisdictions. They maintain their own jails and armed detachments. They do their own policing the people and run their own courts. Brahamdagh himself is now living a lavish life in Switzerland and getting funds for his separation movement from anti-Pakistan elements.
According to reports he is receiving huge funds and other logistic support from India. These Sardars of Baluchistan have very simple strategy. As long as their vested interested are being served by the Pakistani government and establishment stick with Pakistan, as soon as the things are going against their interest, make the freedom movement alive.
Pakistani interior minister Rehman Malik announced that he would welcome Brahamdagh and others in Pakistan and withdraw all charges against them upon his returns to Pakistan. I would like to ask Mr. Malik that he should also reveal the list of murders of Pakistani soldiers and other important figures these Sardars have committed before gave them asylum. How long Pakistani establishment and bureaucracy listened to the threats of tribal leaders and make them happy on their demands.
Recently, three US Congressmen passed a resolution for independent and sovereign Baluchistan. This resolution has not value other than that United States want to pressurise Pakistani government against Pakistan’s decision of freezing NATO supply to Afghanistan and banned CIA activities in Pakistan passed a resolution.
There is no question that the situation in Baluchistan is alarming and needs urgent attention. Not attention to the threats and blackmailing of tribal leaders and foreign powers but attention to the needs of poor neglected poor of Baluchistan. Pakistani government should use the cane and carrot policy - canes for Sardars and carrots for the common people. Pakistani government should launch massive development program for the people of Baluchistan, provide extensive security to the ordinary people, build roads and damaged infrastructure, open new education, health and law & order enforcement centres and win the hearts and minds of the common Baluch. At the same time never bow down against Sardars and foreign powers, use full power to deal with anti-Pakistan elements, there should not be any comprised on the sovereignty of Pakistan.
Another important matter is the continuation of democratic process in Baluchistan. Military operation cannot be the solution – Pakistan should not forget what happened in East Pakistan. At the same time, no concession to the anti-Pakistani elements doesn’t matter how Sarar is involved as these Sardar and their system is the biggest hurdle in the development of Baluchistan. And to win the hearts and minds of the people of Baluchistan so that they could feel that their future is with the Pakistan which is linked to the development of Baluchistan and providing basic rights and facilities to the common people of Baluchistan.
Syed Atiq ul Hassan is the Sydney-based journalist and a media analyst, his homepage is http://www.sahassan.com/