QUETTA: The Voice for Baloch Missing Persons (VBMP) announced on Wednesday that its protest camp was being closed for two months after Chief Minister Jam Kamal Khan Alyani held out the assurance that his government would make serious efforts for the recovery of missing persons.

Speaking at a press conference along with CM Alyani, VBMP vice chairman Mama Qadeer Baloch said the protest camp would be restored if the issue was not resolved after two months.

“We are going to close our protest camp for two months as we have been given two months for resolving the issue,” Mama Qadeer said. “We are happy to see the provincial government’s concern about missing persons and its announcement to take up the issue seriously with all stakeholders.”

Two female relatives of missing persons also attended the press conference.

CM Alyani said that resolving the issue of missing persons was a great responsibility, but the previous government did nothing to resolve it. “We will take up the issue with Prime Minister Imran Khan and other officials concerned,” he added.

The CM said he had discussed the issue with the VBMP leaders and sought two months’ time to make serious efforts for the recovery of missing people.

“The VBMP leaders have given us a list of 110 missing persons. Eleven people, who had been missing for four to five years, have returned homes recently,” he added.

Provincial Home Minister Zia Langove, VBMP chair­man Nasarullah Baloch, provincial ministers Abdul Reh­man Khetiran, Mir Saleem Ahmed Khosa and Mohammad Khan Lehri and Senator-elect Manzoor Ahmed Kakar were present on the occasion.

The chief minister said different political parties and people held photo sessions with the VBMP leaders previously, but did nothing.

He said his government had decided to play its role in this regard along with the authorities and institutions concerned. He said his government was not taking up this important issue for political point scoring.

“We will not show any negligence over the issue and will take all stakeholders on board and knock every door in this regard,” he said.

VBMP chairman Nasar­ullah Baloch said 250 people had returned to their homes in the recent past, including those who had been taken into custody by law enforcement agencies for interrogation in some cases.

He said Home Minister Mir Zia Langove, who had visited the protest camp, assured them that the government would make all-out efforts to resolve the issue.

He expressed satisfaction over the chief minister’s assurance and said: “I’m confident we will not receive decomposed bodies any more.”

Published in Dawn, January 17th, 2019