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Why Hazara?


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Chairman of the Hazara Democratic Party (HDP) Abdul Khaliq Hazara (4L) is observing a three-day-long hunger strike which began on Saturday. — File Photo

After over 48 hours since it started, the sit-in on Quetta’s Alamdar Road staged by hundreds of members from the Hazara Shia community continues on Sunday.

The demonstrators, while refusing to bury their loved ones, began the protests shortly after a series of blasts rocked Quetta on Jan 10, 2012, killing over 100 people, mostly from the Hazara community.

In a conversation with on the current situation in Balochistan’s capital, chairman of the Hazara Democratic Party (HDP), Abdul Khaliq Hazara, who is currently observing a three-day-long hunger strike in Quetta to draw attention to the Hazaras' plight, said that the government and law enforcement agencies' failure to stop the ‘genocide’ of the community amounted to complicity. A similar stance was also previously highlighted in a recent HRW report on Balochistan.

The HDP chief described the government’s performance as indicative of the fact that there were black sheep within the government and the security personnel who supported those responsible for the targeted killings of members of the Hazara community. He claimed that there had been neither any arrests nor other developments in any of the cases involving the victimisation of the Hazara community. Hazara said in his view the authorities' negligence and incompetence amounted to complicity.

The HDP chief moreover told that the laws were being applied only to persecute the poor and helpless and not to bring to account those behind the kidnappings for ransom and robberies rampant in Quetta. He further alleged that such incidents could only occur at the behest of those who wielded power and influence.

In response to a question over his thoughts on a possible solution to the problem, the HDP chief said: "Those in charge of affairs — under whose watch the situation has deteriorated to the current level — need to be replaced immediately. Moreover, only a military-supervised targeted operation along the same lines as the Lal Masjid, Swat and Karachi operations could help eliminate the handful of individuals responsible for such incidents. Why should Quetta be an exception?"

"Quetta was a metropolitan city consisting of multicultural and religiously-tolerant citizens," reminisced the HDP chairman. "It is not as vast in terms of area as other major cities but some elements are trying to destabilise the situation and push the people into a state of anarchy and civil war."

He said he feared that the Hazara community, which has "always held a non-violent approach" within constitutional perimeters, was being pushed into violence through the Talibanisation of its lands and the involvement of other extremist elements.

When questioned whether he thought the protests and sit-ins staged in Quetta could be a risk to the Hazara community, he said: "We have no other choice but to resort to these methods. The risk exists in our daily lives. At least, this way our plight is being highlighted and some awareness is being created."

Speaking on the reaction and show of support by the civil society over the Quetta bombings, he said it was due to the awareness that had been created on the recent events that people who were educated and from the middle class were choosing to involve themselves in the cause.

He said the awareness of the plight of the Hazara community in Quetta did not come easily nor overnight. Hazara also referred to the protests being held by members of the community in 36 major cities of the world. Earlier in Dec 2012, a conference held in Gothenburg, Sweden had adopted a resolution asking the Swedish government and European Union to put pressure on the Pakistani government to protect ethnic and religious minority communities.

Also, the British House of Commons had, on Nov 19, hosted a similar conference which was attended by 20 MPs.

Before the HDP chairman could be questioned on the suspected motives behind the attacks against the Hazara community, Abdul Khaliq Hazara said: "We are peace-loving people, why would anyone want to target our hapless community".

DAWN_VIDEO - /1029551/DAWN-RM-1x1

Comments (68) Closed

Khurram Jan 13, 2013 08:13pm
What about safety of Muslims, Christians, Sikhs and Dalits in the world largest so called SECULAR HINDU country? Let's start with changing the name before you call it SECULAR - name itself smells prejudice...
Tony Jan 13, 2013 10:14pm
The reason of hatred is intolerance of faiths of other people. The Shias are treated as heretics (kafirs), just like Ahmedias, Ismailies, Nooristanis, Barelvi Sufis, etc. Only the Wahhabi Salafi Sunnis think that they are the sole thekedar of Muslim heritage of the world. The Christians, Sikhs, Hindus, Buddhists, Jains and Parsis have already been almost wiped out from Pakistan, now they have turned their guns on to these new targets.
Ahmer Jan 13, 2013 07:59pm
Do not blame the Pashtuns. LeJ is a Punjab based group.
Ahmer Jan 13, 2013 07:56pm
Baselss allegation against an innocent community! What have the Hazaras done to Pashuns in Afghanistan? It is the other way round there too.
Ali Jan 13, 2013 07:56pm
My prayers are with my Hazara countrymen. I am Shia and I am Pakistani. The unfortunate part is that a small number of people can ruin a good thing in Pakistan. Therefore, we need to raise awareness to fight the current state of affairs. As far as the Indians on this Comment Board are concerned, this is an internal matter that has no parallels with the Two-Nation Theory. Therefore, please leave and let us thrash this out amongst ourselves. Most Muslims in Pakistan, whatever sect they belong to, bear no ill will against each other. We are a religious, ideological and patriotic people who will overcome this and become a stronger nation.
Observer Jan 13, 2013 10:05pm
God Bless you Ali. You are a brave and honest person. This sunni prays for your well-being.
Saleem Jan 13, 2013 07:10pm
Janan, here is the Newton's law in your face!! First of all human reaction is not defined by Newton! Secondly, don't mix God's intent with Taliban! Taliban are Barbarians, In-human, reserved to go to the deepest levels of Hell, InshaAllah! Your support for Taliban is shameful! Get your facts right!
Kamal Hasan Jan 13, 2013 07:35pm
I don;t know why military is not there to protect our people.. it seems something fundamentally wrong in our system, if it goes like that Pakistan will be a Sunni Muslim state.
P Setra Jan 14, 2013 07:14pm
As is said 'two wrongs' do not make 'one' right. Both are wrongs, and remain wrong. Violence never solves problems,it creates more.
Anonymous Jan 13, 2013 07:39pm
non believers? seriously?!
Ali Jan 13, 2013 08:03pm
Your initial sarcasm is not needed when a nation is grieving. Go over to the current affairs section of your own country's newspaper and see what is going on. As far as being able to co-exist is concerned, this is clearly enshrined in Islamic teachings. Our nation has a bigger destiny to fulfill that you dont understand yet.
ahsan Jan 13, 2013 07:29pm
Bigger worry should be what have pushtoon have done to other pushtoon.....Taliban are not gods warth.... they are Satan's tools
rahul pathak Jan 13, 2013 07:03pm
read physics again.....u have poor grasp of its applicability
Aftab Jan 15, 2013 12:55pm
Who allowed you to interrupt in our affairs, we Pakistanis love each others and know how to protect but we will not allow you to poke your nose here. It is our matter and you please go to see your issues not ours. All Shia sunni are brothers all times and they will defeat all hostile elements against them here.
Aftab Jan 15, 2013 01:12pm
I love all Hazara community as they are great hosts, human being and courteous in their dealings. These terrorists are dfinitely attacking soft people and communities and trying to develope hatred among each all of us and the unnecessary people from India are poking their nose here for provoking hatred. We love each other and know our enemies very well who are exactly behind all terrorists activites, if you ask any learned lady from United Kingdom or gentleman of English origin, who is culprit. They will give you all details who is funding all these terrorists to kill Muslims at large in Pakistan, yes these are Raw, CIA and Mosad agents, purchasing our innocent illetrate people and attacking our innocent and sweet people like Hazaras. We hate all this and condemn in all respects and 100% count the Zardari and company the responsibles as they can control all if they want but they are also purchased by the big powers, so its time for us to stand against all odds and be united. We are all here and we don't need interruption of any Indian critics.
madiha Jan 13, 2013 06:34pm
UR formula is totally wrong hazaras are peacefull people
Naseer Jan 15, 2013 03:03am
Well if you support Taliban and Lashkar Jhangvi so much, I pray to Allah SWT, that you be with them on the day of judgement. That would be justice, isn't it?
Muneeb Shaukat Khan (@mskpk47) Jan 13, 2013 10:00pm
All my Indian friends so keen to comment on Pakistani websites telling us our problems. I will not get into arguing that who is after all behind these coward acts. All I want to tell you is that we also have eyes and ears and tabs on what happens over that side of the border. Golden Temple, Babri mosque, Samjhota express, 10s of church burnings, the marginalization of the intouchables, all these stories did not come from Quetta or Lahore or Peshawar. Look your face in the mirror please. God bless you and us
Naseer Jan 15, 2013 02:58am
Shia's all over Pakistan have shown the true peaceful and tolerant Islam. It is Taliban and Lashkar Jahngvi that use the name of Islam for their political benefits, but they are actually the greatest enemies of Islam and Muslims.
Mehdi KaramAli Jan 13, 2013 06:17pm
Oh its a wrath of God.. And believe me.. Its coming to all of us soon! And the reason behind it will be staying silent.
Zimbo_Indian Jan 14, 2013 02:14pm
I agree. India should be comparing itself with China and not with Pakistan. Pakistan's true competitor is Afghanistan
S. A. M. Jan 15, 2013 01:28am
Harinder Ji I agree with you that Pakistan was made for the muslims but when we look at the current situation it is very obvious that muslims in India are in far better conditions with non muslims than muslims in pakistan with their fellow muslims
Syed Jan 13, 2013 11:39pm
The Question shuold be, why hazara? why ahmadis? why christians? why hindus? you must realise that this fanatical approach to religion means no security for the minorities. I think the people of Pakistan need to get up in a egypt style march and take the fight to the extremists rather than waiting for another blast. You may be safe for now but this fire will get to you in the end as well so act now.
Nasir Jan 15, 2013 01:15am
Why bring God in a political discussion??
Hussain Jan 13, 2013 05:49pm
We are with you Hazaras
Zimbo_Indian Jan 14, 2013 02:27pm
I hope you realise that communities are not innocent or guilty. Individuals are. Just as it is not right to brand an entire community as guilty for the deeds of a few, it is also not logical to declare an entire community as innocent.
fbn2 Jan 14, 2013 08:57am
These people aren't responsible for what their forefathers did or did not do. If you can't condemn the oppressors, stay silent. Stop siding with the muderers and justifying them.
Cyrus Howell Jan 14, 2013 08:16am
"We have met the enemy - and they are us."
Cyrus Howell Jan 14, 2013 08:05am
A human being at rest tends to remain at rest until acted on by an outside force. . We can see where God's wrath is now falling - in Karachi.
Abid Jan 14, 2013 08:05am
sadly shia's and other minorities are not the only target of this banned terrorist group. Allama Saleem Qadri, Abbas Qadri and mufti Naeemi are few of the sunni ulema who were martyred by these people. People practicing their faith in mosques, shrines and churches have been targeted too. so to put the blame on religious activities is incorrect. The same sects/ religions have co-existed in pakistan since 1947. The trouble started when foreign ideologies were imported alongwith jihadi's during Zia era.
Cyrus Howell Jan 14, 2013 07:59am
Prove it.
rohan Jan 14, 2013 07:51am
I am surprised to see that a section of Islam is involves in peaceful protest.
Abid Jan 14, 2013 07:43am
Thank you, your comments have explained the reason for pushtoons problems.
Rashid Jan 14, 2013 02:55pm
I agree with you. Everthing happens as God wishes. Who are we to judge?
kurban Jan 14, 2013 07:29am
i am with hazara shia.., it is shameful to b even silent..,
karim Jan 14, 2013 07:26am
In past 5-6 years , more muslims have got killed in Pakistan by their muslim brothers than total muslims killed in India in 65 years , since independence.Why ??? have u ever heard about Shia , Sunni riots in India , or anything against Ahmadiya's or any other muslim sect. I bet nothing !!!
rehmat Jan 13, 2013 04:52pm
great work HDP. we are proud of you
syed baqar ahsan Jan 13, 2013 04:18pm
Hazara are docile,innocent,honest,sincere,spirited,un armed and above all self disciplined ,this most lucrative target for the killers, only Pushtoons of Balochistan know who is involved in all this massacres of shias if they cooperate it will be solved.
Harinder Jan 13, 2013 04:45pm
Dear Sunni rulers of Pakistan , I request you to not kill your fellow Muslims brothers ( Shias) Pakisitan was created so that Muslims could live in brother hood free from the hegemony of India (Hindus ,Sikhs , Buddhist ,chritisans ,Jains.) Believe me it is possible to co-exist even if we worship GOD in different ways.
Soul of Manto Jan 13, 2013 03:01pm
God save you!
rich Jan 13, 2013 04:29pm
why ? where is the pakistni awam,military and govt?
syed baqar ahsan Jan 13, 2013 04:34pm
Accept Hazaras rest everybody is armed and have patronage of government,politicians,foreign and involved in all kinds of businesses,so what else required to fulfil the dreams of others(USA/UK/KSA/UAE/NATO/GCC/Jordan)against Iran and Pakistan.When mindset is change to this extent that our people wants to celebrate everything with Saudi Arabia and deny all basic Islamic/scientific laws of nature and Holy Prophet
Gohar Jan 14, 2013 06:35am
please stop lumping us with india, We are two different countries that happen to be neighboors.
Gohar Jan 14, 2013 06:33am
I 100% support our Hazara brother and sisters in Quetta. We are all with you. Gohar, Gujranwala
ummemuhammed Jan 14, 2013 06:19am
Thank you for this new piece of information. If they did wrong, that was wrong too. However, this may not be the right time to highlight it or in this manner. I wonder at the retaliation at this comment, for Pakistanis are told time and again upon the extremism problem "You reap what you sow"...
Ali Jan 14, 2013 12:59pm
This is the real way of protest in Islam. ..
Qaiser Bakhtiari Jan 13, 2013 04:06pm
Sadly the rest of Pakistan remains apathetic. While Pakistanis would burn the whole country down over a youtube video. The daily killings, bombs and lawlessness doesn't seem to affect them at all.
Afaq Jan 14, 2013 04:42am
Sacking the government is not the solution as in the news is that Lashker-e-Jhnagvi took responsibility of it then get their leader to justice. Whey government never get them as in the past and now if they are their tool.
Sajjad Iqbal Jan 14, 2013 04:37am
i am a sunni Pakistani... and all of my good wishes are for Hazara Community... May Allah guide us in right direction...
Murtaza Saifuddin Jan 14, 2013 04:34am
May the deceased rest in peace. The Taliban and Lashkar-e-Jhangvi should be declared as kaafirs alongside being called terrorists. Each and every dutiful muslim should pray to Allah everyday to punish such kaafirs, terrorists, enemies of Islam. Hopefully the prayers will be answered one day.
ram Jan 14, 2013 08:17pm
Ask judiciary!
Ali Jan 15, 2013 07:30am
Barelvi brothers, we know you have suffered as well. Be careful brothers, once they are finished with us, it will be you in the cross hairs (remember Nishtar Park, Data Darbar, etc)......prepare now or perish later as we are perishing. Being true Sunnis, you have the strength to stop them, as Pakistanis are more inclined to support you. I urge you to unite behind Dr Tahir Ul Qadri.......he seems to be the man who can bridge the Shia-Sunni divide once and for all.
Sridhar Jan 13, 2013 03:45pm
Earnestly wishing all of you (Shias, Ahmediyas, Chritians, Hindus, Sikhs, and yes, non-believers) both safety and peace in the Land of the Pure.
rahul pathak Jan 13, 2013 06:59pm
pakistan & india have one more thing common.....both have corrupt,callous,inefficient political leadership with blood of common man on their hands...
Agha Ata (USA) Jan 13, 2013 03:57pm
Hazaras are Shias, and easy to recognize for being so handsome and fair.
Janan Jan 13, 2013 05:57pm
Newton third law of motion says "For every action there is an equal and opposite re-action" what hazaras had done to pushtoon in Afghanistan...after which God wrath on them in the shape of Taliban...
Ajaya K Dutt Jan 14, 2013 12:46am
Hazaras were persecuted in Afghanistan. What makes you think otherwise. Your sense of hatred towards Hazaras has no justification.
mazharuddin Jan 13, 2013 03:37pm
No Hazara communiy person stated the main reason of such sectarian hatred, there must be any reason behind such intense hatred to which community people avoiding to mention. There is need to avoid such activities that spread hatred. Religious activities should not be hurdle to citizens who involved in their daily routine work for survival.Need inter sect and open debates enable people understand the truth and come together.
Amol Choudhary Jan 14, 2013 12:06pm
Yes. You people don't deserve it.
Syed Atif Jan 14, 2013 12:38am
Killing innocent, unarmed people like this is an act of cowardice and Talibans are cowards. Prophet PBUH defined the rules of engagement once and for ever when he entered Mecca in 10 A.H. Prophet PBUH said you will fight only those 1). who come bearing arms 2). ready to fight. Muslims can not be terrorists and a terrorist can not be a Muslim. You guys are not Muslims. You guys are coward and Kafir. You are following devil who came to you dressed up as priests and misinterpret Quran for you and tell you lies as hadith. Killing innocents is not Islam.
Mr. Q Jan 14, 2013 12:29am
how about God's wrath of drones !
tauqir Jan 14, 2013 12:19am
How many times shias were massacred, and i use the word massacred seriously, and the government did not go after the perpetrators? What other encouragement did this taliban, jhangvi, dawat etc need. Even now has anyone spoken of a decisive action.
changaiz Jan 13, 2013 07:03pm
do you have any documentary evidence on what you are bluffing? do u have any idea how many hazaras were persecuted in afghanistan? specially in bamiyan? and if in response they reacted which had become there right then its wrong? don't compare your barbaric taliban with a peaceful community
S. A. M. Jan 13, 2013 03:35pm
This is how an educated, cultivates and peace loving mind works. It is time to show the power of law which prevails over everything. Bravo Hazara Community Salute to your men, women and children bearing the cold weather and the high risk for the just cause. Salute to your Martyrs Salute to your patience and commitment to non violence. It is the plight of the Hazaras that has jostled the sensibility of the civil class and so people from all over the pakistan from all sects and religions are joining your protest and not just in Pakistan but also all over the world. Zulm jab berhta he to mit jata he. You have shown the path for the deliverance.
aviratam Jan 14, 2013 09:23am
Pamir Jan 13, 2013 11:10pm
You need to read a bit history. Hazaras reduced to 38 over 100 years ago by Pashtun, of which the current Hazaras of Quetta a friction. Even better WAKE UP Adol Hitlar is dead and his era is over. Why are you pretending to be his offsprings
safar shah Jan 13, 2013 10:38pm
What about the many Punjabi who have been murdered, targeted by Baloch criminals? It's interesting how the media never mentions them.
Saniya Jan 13, 2013 10:33pm
You should be ashamed of yourself for saying that. You do not deserve to be called human.