200 Baloch missing persons have returned home so far this year: home minister

Updated June 29, 2019

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Protesters and long march participants holding slogans demanding the recovery of missing persons. — Photo by author/File
Protesters and long march participants holding slogans demanding the recovery of missing persons. — Photo by author/File

Balochistan Home Minister Mir Ziaullah Langove revealed on Saturday that as many as 200 missing persons have returned to their homes since January this year.

"We have data from January 1, 2019 about the return of missing people and the number of missing persons is not in the thousands [as previously claimed]," Langove additionally told DawnNewsTV on Saturday evening.

However, chairman of NGO the Voice of Baloch Missing Persons (VBMP) Nasrullah Baloch put the figure of returned persons much lower. He said VBMP had given a list of 365 missing persons to the provincial government and of those, 103 missing persons had returned to their homes so far this year.

In August last year, following the PTI government coming into power, the Balochistan National Party-Mengal (BNP-M) had signed a six-point agreement with the PTI leadership after detailed negotiations.

The six points included recovery of missing persons, implementation of the National Action Plan, implementation of six per cent quota for Balochistan in the federal government, immediate repatriation of Afghan refugees and the construction of dams in the province to resolve the acute water crisis.

BNP-M also recently supported the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf government in passing the budget for the financial year 2019-20 in return for a renewed commitment for the implementation of its six-point agenda.

Editorial: Little progress on missing persons

"The recovery of missing persons is our top priority since the establishment of the incumbent government in the province," said Langove.

He said the VBMP had provided provincial authorities a list of 250 missing people and that the commission on enforced disappearances was also hearing about 40 cases of missing persons.