DUMPED bodies, missing people, sectarian killings: most headlines about the law and order situation in Balochistan focus on these events. But what is perhaps just as disruptive to the fabric of life in that province, and gets far less attention, is how the machinery that runs Balochistan is under attack. The assassination of a district and sessions judge in Quetta on Thursday may have been carried out for any of a number of reasons: because he was a settler, for sectarian reasons, or simply to undermine the state. Whatever the motives, it highlighted how lack of security in Balochistan is making it near-impossible in certain areas to carry out the daily work of administration that keeps a society going. Reports are emerging from Dera Bugti, for example, that many if not most government officials posted there, including doctors, teachers, engineers and other civil servants, stay away from the area; the deputy commissioner and district police chief live in Sui, not in the district headquarters. Some of this might be driven by dishonesty within the system, especially at the lower levels, because institutions lack even the will or capacity to enforce rules. But sections of Dera Bugti also remain no-go areas, despite denials by Balochistan government officials. In parts of the province, civil servants are making the choice between doing their jobs and saving their lives.

A report by the HRCP indicates what a complex nexus of disruptive actors is holding life in the province at a standstill: from our own security establishment and a government lacking political will to militant groups of various stripes and foreign hands exploiting the grievances Pakistan’s own policies have fostered. The result is a province in which the state has, in parts, effectively ceased to function. But it is also a place where NGOs fear to tread, driven away by threats, kidnappings and killings. Without a functioning state to provide basic services, private organisations to fill the gap or lawmakers committed to development, the people of Balochistan are effectively on their own.

Meanwhile, the disappearances and killings continue. On Thursday, the International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances, the HRCP announced that 450 dead bodies have been discovered and over 1,300 people have gone missing in the province during the current government’s tenure. These figures may be lower according to some estimates, but the scale of this problem is only one aspect of it. Through a combination of indifference, wrongheaded policies and sheer fear, the state continues to create a mess in Balochistan while leaving its people to suffer the consequences on their own.

Updated Sep 01, 2012 01:08am

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Comments (Closed)


M. Asghar
Sep 01, 2012 05:51am
A sharp and pertinent editoriial on the state's total failure in the admimistration of Balochistan ;s affairs. Moreover, the CJ of the Apex Court has been hammering the same point for quite a while.
Fahim Khan
Sep 02, 2012 03:50am
Do not punish rather keep releasing terrorists and then pray for peace :(
Akhter Husain
Sep 01, 2012 03:18pm
The actual reasons behind all these tragic events is that the established people know that their authority is slipping away because of the changing time.The down trodden are coming up after getting them-selves well educated in various fields.We must find out an honorable solution of the change that is acceptable to them.
Lorraine
Sep 01, 2012 03:13pm
It has often been said that we get the government that we deserve. Whilstever people accept the corruption, that is what they will get.
Hasin Ahmed
Sep 02, 2012 12:59am
The current govt doesn't have the will nor the strength nor the capability to restore order in Balochistan. Moreover, it doesn't have time to think about it as most of the time it is busy planning strategy to cling to power.Strong steps need to be taken. But who is going to take those steps. Your editorial is sort of a report on the situation. It doesn't make any suggestion as how to bring normalcy in that province. It is time to be bold and talk straight and with honesty.
Asif Ansari
Sep 02, 2012 10:16am
Balochistan is in Pakistan, what we see the atlas. Editorial provide the latest news about Balochistan, No. It was continuous running some decades ago, but this time its scale is too large. BLA directly give and take some international spices agencies, Americans congress discussed the Balochistan matter in its session to destroy the International rules. We people don't know why the Balochistan issues and problems are not solved by our stakeholders, why? Is the real problem, please discuss with your people, we all sit together and discuss it and finally to solve the matter, This is our Pakistan. In Balochistan civil servants, teachers, doctors, engineers, judge, security personnel and others live in danger and they do not feel safe, so why we sit silently. No, never, please solve the matter of Balochistan as soon as possible, We are with our stakeholders.
Iftikhar Husain
Sep 01, 2012 10:38am
It is sad story Iagree with the comment made in the editorial. It is the duty of the state to provide security to the people which is not being done. We have seen the situation getting worse for a long time.
Syed Ahmed
Sep 02, 2012 02:39am
Not only Baluchistan but the whole country seems to be at the verge of breakdown. May Allah save Pakistan.
Jaihoon
Sep 02, 2012 02:35am
The tragic situation in Baluchistan is beyond redemption. The only solution is to ascertain the popular aspirations of the Baloch people .
Syed Ahmed
Sep 02, 2012 02:37am
Not only Baluchistan but the whole country seems at the verge of breakdown. May Allah save Pakistan.
Abdjul Waheed
Sep 01, 2012 07:55am
it is not a battle of nerves to handle this mess. some bold steps are need of conditions by the federal govt. to spare our Baloch brothers from being massacred routinely...
najeeb
Sep 01, 2012 08:09am
I fully agree withe this article but this situation raised before several years ago yet no more attentions has been given to the provence