Dawn News

Supreme Court of Pakistan. - File Photo

ISLAMABAD: Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) president Yasin Azad bemoaned before the Supreme Court on Wednesday that the situation in Balochistan had reached a point of no return similar to that of 1971 situation and, therefore, needed an urgent political solution.

“Believe me Balochistan is slipping away,” he told a three-judge bench hearing a petition on the law and order situation and human rights violations in the province.

Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry observed that the court had already given a loud and clear message to the related arms of the government to think about Balochistan.

Both the federal and provincial governments are required to submit reports and admit in writing that they had miserably failed to establish the writ of law in Balochistan.

Mr Azad, who recently organised a seminar on Balochistan in Islamabad and visited Quetta to observe the worsening environment, informed the court that the SCBA had decided to convene a special meeting of local politicians after Eid.

He criticised the role of intelligence agencies in the province and said fingers were being pointed at the Frontier Corps. “Even police bosses say they cannot control the situation in Balochistan because of undue interference by intelligence agencies.”

Mr Azad said the conference in Islamabad had condemned the kidnapping of people and dumping of mutilated bodies and was unanimous that these should end and there should be political dialogue with angry Baloch leaders.

He regretted that he had sent recommendations of the conference to the president, prime minister and the National Assembly speaker and sought a special parliamentary session on the Balochistan issue, but none of them had responded.

However, Mr Azad admitted that former prime minister Yousuf Raza Gilani had chaired a meeting in Balochistan which was attended by the army chief and the ISI head and that new Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf had also visited the province.

He requested the court to continue to keep pressure on the administration through suo motu notices since a number of disappeared persons had been released because of the present hearings.

The court regretted that Attorney General Irfan Qadir had never shown interest in cases pertaining to law and order in Balochistan and did not even bother to attend the proceedings.

Justice Jawwad S. Khawaja was of the opinion that local government elections would help ameliorate the situation in Balochistan because the suspended development works would start and the life of people improve.

The court provided another opportunity to the federal and Balochistan governments and the departments concerned to submit comprehensive reports and summary highlighting the status of each case of missing persons.

The case will be taken up on Thursday.

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