Turbat long marchers say facing transport curbs

Published December 20, 2023
Participants in the long march raise slogans against alleged extrajudicial killings.—Courtesy Baloch Yakjehti Committee
Participants in the long march raise slogans against alleged extrajudicial killings.—Courtesy Baloch Yakjehti Committee

LAHORE: Thousands of people joined the Baloch Yakjehti Council (BYC) marchers on Tuesday as they reached Taunsa Sharif on Tuesday, protesting against alleged extrajudicial killings.

The marchers plan to spend the night in Taunsa Sharif and will decide whether to continue their long march to Islamabad on Wednesday.

Previously, the protesters held a sit-in in DG Khan and blocked Globe Square, demanding transport for their onward journey. Their initial transport had allegedly been withdrawn under pressure from the district administration.

However, after negotiations, the protesters were allowed to hire transport for their march towards Taunsa Sharif and Islamabad.

The BYC had started the long march from Turbat to Islamabad 25 days ago.

The journey from DG Khan to Taunsa saw thousands of people, including women and children, lining both sides of the roads to welcome the protesters. The marchers later reached Kalma Chowk in Taunsa Sharif and held a protest rally where the organisers addressed the participants.

One of the march’s organisers, Mahrang Baloch, told Dawn that the Punjab administration was creating hurdles for the marchers, and were restraining transporters from providing them vehicles for the march.

“We have received solidarity beyond our expectations in DG Khan and Taunsa Sharif. Thousands of people started marching with us,” she said.

“If the administration does not create any hurdles and we get the transport, we would march toward Islamabad; otherwise, we would start another sit-in in Taunsa Sharif,” she added.

Tariq Saeed Birmani in D.G. Khan also contributed to this report

Published in Dawn, December 20th, 2023

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