Democracy: A Catch-22 Situation

Suhail Mandukhel 
Balochistan has been militancy-stricken province where the pervasive wave of insurgency was once with full vigor. Especially, the jobless youth were used as a tool for “balkanization.” They were co-opted by rebels and were threatened if they would rebut. At the same time, they were frustrated from state due to its inequities. Simply, they were in a catch-22 situation and in the state of this confusion, they had to lose their lives while fighting for an absurd cause. Their oft-read book was Henry Thoreau’s essay on civil disobedience who declared aggression to unjust laws, the holiest task but they misconstrued civil disobedience as “Anti-state war.” Anyway, serious friendly attempts were made by the state to finish the grievances of Baloch but still problems persist.
Lord Bryce has rightly said that indolence and indifference on the part of citizens are the two enemies of democracy. And unfortunately; these two concepts are deep-seated in our society. In 2013 elections, turnout was tallied only 43%. In which, out of 3,336,659 voters only 1,300,628 cast their votes. However, these figures were comparatively better than that of 2008 elections when turnout was found to be 31%. In 2013 elections, the greatest problem for the viewers was the small turnout in PB-41 where Qudoos Bezinjo got a small margin of 544 votes out of 57656. These statistics speak volumes about apathy, typified in minds of people. Now I will tend to write up salient reasons and also the solution that can win the hearts of people over with.
First, Balochistan has full of untapped minerals. These minerals include iron, copper, cobalt, gold and some other industrial minerals like lithium. But fruits of these resources are still untasted by local people and the state of poverty is pitiable. According to UNDP 2016 report, 71% people of Baluchistan are living in multidimensional poverty. This deplorable living state has induced antagonism in the minds towards state.
Second, the unacceptable socioeconomic disparities between Balochistan and other parts of country are constantly creating gap between the federation and province. People have clung hopes to CPEC and expect it to be a relief for their problems but this project is also out-of-touching fact that it will benefit to local people.
Lastly, solution to these problems can be that the Balochistan must be granted more than its due share in every project and the establishment must draw up its hands from inordinate interference in affairs of the province.
Writer is a Masters Student of political science and history. Follow him on twitter @SuhailMandukhel
DisclaimerViews expressed in this article are those of the author and Balochistan Voices not necessarily agrees with them.
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