PESHAWAR: Awami National Party held protest demonstrations across Khyber Pakhtunkhwa against the enforced disappearances of people in different provinces and demanded of the government to ensure safe recovery of the missing persons.
In Peshawar, the protest rally was led by Ghulam Ahmad Bilour, Samar Haroon Bilour, Abidullah Yousufzai and other leaders of the party. The rally was also attended by relatives of missing persons, who were holding banners and placards inscribed with demands for safe recovery of their near and dear ones.
Speakers on the occasion said that relatives of the missing people were left with the only option to hold protest demonstrations because government was least bothered to take practical steps for their recovery.
They said that Asad Khan Achakzai, a spokesman of ANP Balochistan, had been missing for the past five months but no pragmatic steps were taken to produce him before a court of law. They claimed that more than 20 people had been missing since January 2021 across the country and their family members failed to trace them despite repeated visits to relevant offices.
Aimal claims over 6,000 people missing across country
“We demand of the government to take urgent steps for presentation of the people in courts of law for trial,” Mr Bilour said. He said that his party would not support anyone involved in crimes. He added that it was duty of state institutions to protect lives, properties and honour of the citizens.
In Charsadda, the rally for recovery of missing persons was addressed by ANP provincial president Aimal Wali Khan. He said that mothers and sisters of missing persons were wandering on roads but nobody gave heed to their requests.
Aimal Wali said that according to available data more than 6,000 people were missing across the country. He said that 23 citizens were made disappeared forcibly only during January.
He said that Constitution guaranteed opportunity to all citizens to defend themselves in court of law. He demanded safe recovery of all missing persons.
In Mardan, ANP senior vice-president and former chief minister Ameer Haider Khan Hoti led the party activists, who were carrying banners and placards inscribed with demands for early recovery of missing persons.
The protesters staged a sit-in outside Mardan Press Club.
Addressing on the occasion, Mr Hoti said that hundred of countrymen had been missing for the last several months. He said that it would be criminal negligence if they remained silent over the issue of missing persons.
In Swat, the rally was led by ANP district president Ayub Khan Asharey.
Carrying banners and placards inscribed with their demands, the ANP workers marched from Nishat Chowk to Swat Press Club.
In Lower Dir, the rally was held outside Timergara Press Club.
ANP district president MPA Haji Bahadar Khan led the protesters, who were chanting slogans for recovery of missing persons. The ANP workers from all parts of the district attended the rally.
In Lakki Marwat, the rally was led by ANP provincial vice president Shahi Khan Sherani. The ANP activists carried banners and placards inscribed with their demands.
In Karak, ANP staged a sit-in outside the local press club for recovery of missing persons.
The sit-in was led by ANP provincial deputy secretary Taimoor Baz.
The protesters said that disappearance of people was extrajudicial. They said that the relatives of missing persons were unaware about their whereabouts.
In Bajaur, ANP workers and family members of missing persons attended the rally held at main Chowck in Khar Bazaar. The protesters marched from press club to GT Road.
In Mohmand, the protest rally was held at Ekkaghund Bazaar.
Led by MPA Nisar Mohmand, the rally was attended by workers and leaders of ANP besides the relatives of missing persons and residents of the area.
In Battagram, the protest rally was held outside Battagram Press Club.
Led by former Mardan nazim Himayatullah Mayar and ANP Battagram chapter president Ayaz Khan Torkhaili, the protesters demanded recovery of forcibly disappeared persons.
PML-N district president Mahajarin Khan and other party workers besides elders of the area also attended the protest rally.
The protest rallies were also heldin Kurram tribal district, Malakand and other parts of the province to seek recovery of missing persons.
Published in Dawn, February 23rd, 2021