Ethnic Cleansing of Hazaras in Balochistan

Inzamam Qasim Silachi
Balochistan was once called “Little Paris” because of its natural beauty, ethnic cleavages, pluralistic society, cultural diversity and policy of coexistence. This beauty of “Little Paris” was soon shattered because of bomb blasts, target killings and incessant deadly attacks on the small ethnic groups.
“The population of Balochistan is in millions, 40 dead in Mastung, is not a big deal” these reprehensible words were uttered by former Chief Minister of Balochistan, Nawab Aslam Khan Raisani. These ignominious words added insult to the injury of victim’s family. The beleaguered Hazara community has suffered more than anyone else. By manifesting its hidden talent, this community represented Pakistan on all platforms of the world. They provided conducive environment to business activities and they were running about 70-80% of total business of Quetta, a hub of economic activities. Now there is only blood, piles of dead bodies, mushrooming religious fanaticism, chaos and anarchy.
The month of Ashura is month of mourning and processions were held only to pay tribute to the martyrs of “Karbala.” Keeping the apprehension of security, the whole country was locked down. There was looming threat of attack on the processions but the city was fortified by deploying law and enforcement agencies at every nook and cranny of the city. In Balochistan in the following two decades, hundreds of Hazaras’ are killed and scores injured. The genocide of this community was fueled after 9/11 attacks. According to Human Rights watchdog since from 2001 till 2016 the tyranny was inflicted on this community in the shape of sectarian violence. In 2013 about 115 innocent people died and more than 300 injured. It was one of the deadliest attack in the history of Balochistan.
There are several reasons behind the surge in sectarian violence in Balochistan. The war of two powers of Middle East Saudi-Iran is also responsible for the carnages. During Soviet invasion, Saudi Arabia injected millions of dollars to propagate its Salafism ideology and the money was used for covert operations in Afghanistan, India. It also gave birth to many militant groups who turned their guns towards Hazara community and started preaching hatred against Shia sect.
From the thorough analysis of chequered history of Balochistan, it is clear that it has remained breeding ground of sectarian violence. It is a time that we should wake up and smell the coffee that we are always maneuvered by other countries only for their vested political interests. Due to violence in Balochistan many Hazara business families migrated to other countries. This exodus dramatically affected the economy of the country. It is also sabotaging our relations with others countries and leading us to the international isolation. By repudiating the allegations, we can only betray our self. It is a time to mend fences with our neighbor countries and should realize that only by embracing pluralism we can rise to the height of glory and prestige.
Writer Hails from Sibi – Balochistan. He is Studying BS in International Relations from Quaid e Azam University, Islamabad.
DisclaimerViews expressed in this article are those of the author and Balochistan Voices not necessarily agrees with them.
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