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Mengal slams govt failure to arrest lawyers’ killers

Updated August 09, 2017
QUETTA: Balochistan National Party President Sardar Akhtar Mengal addresses a ceremony held at the Quetta Press Club to mark the first anniversary of the victims of last year’s suicide attack at the Civil Hospital.—PPI
QUETTA: Balochistan National Party President Sardar Akhtar Mengal addresses a ceremony held at the Quetta Press Club to mark the first anniversary of the victims of last year’s suicide attack at the Civil Hospital.—PPI

QUETTA: Balochistan National Party (BNP-Mengal) president Sardar Akhtar Mengal has said his party wanted to hold a meeting at Ayub Stadium to observe the first death anniversary of the victims of last year’s suicide attack on the Civil Hospital, but the rulers refused to give permission for it.

Addressing a seminar held here on Tuesday to commemorate the martyrs of the Aug 8, 2016, attack and pay tribute to them, Mr Mengal said the rulers also opposed today’s strike call.

“All martyrs of the Aug 8 attack are our children and brothers. We are with the lawyers in their grief and sorrow and are still in mourning. But unfortunately, our rulers are busy in celebrations, instead of remembering the martyred lawyers,” he said.

He said if the UAE and other Arab countries could abandon their national day celebrations to condemn the killings of Palestinians and show solidarity with them, then “why can’t we do that for our own people”.

Mr Mengal accused the rulers of treating the people of Balochistan as slaves.

He asked why the terrorists were not apprehended despite having information about them and why the killers of lawyers not brought to justice despite the passage of one year. In Balochistan, he said, no one knew why they got killed. “In the recent past, we were not allowed to talk about missing persons, and now we can’t speak about CPEC. If we discuss such things, our elections are rigged.” He recalled that the lawyers’ strong protest had forced former dictator retired Gen Pervez Musharraf to step down. And that was why lawyers of Balochistan were killed systematically and brutally on Aug 8, 2016, he claimed.

He said his party would continue its struggle for the rights of citizens and against atrocities being committed against the people of Balochistan. He demanded that the Hamoodur Rehman commission report on the fall of Dhaka be made public.

BNP secretary general Senator Jahanzeb Jamaldini, Awami National Party’s provincial president Muhammad Asghar Khan Achakzai, Baloch National Movement president Dr Abdul Hayee Baloch and Raza Wakeel also attended the seminar.

Senator Jamaldini and Asghar Achakzai had lost their son and brother, respectively, in the Aug 8 Quetta carnage.

Published in Dawn, August 9th, 2017