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SC last hope for recovery of missing Baloch: speakers

21 May, 2012

QUETTA: Speakers at a seminar strongly condemning the recovery of decomposed bodies of missing persons said the Baloch national struggle had been turned into a human tragedy, and that the Supreme Court was the last hope for the recovery those alive.

They said that if the missing persons were involved in any anti-state activity, they should be produced before the courts and punished in accordance with the constitution.

The seminar was organised by the Voice for Baloch Missing Persons (VBMP) at the Quetta Press Club on Sunday.

The key speakers of the seminar included VBMP President Nasrullah Baloch, senior journalist Shahzada Zulfiqar, Balochistan High Court Bar Association President Zahoor Ahmed Shahwani and HRCP Vice Chairman Tahir Hussain.

Criticising the incumbent government, the VBMP president said that political workers had been picked up by government agencies in the regime of General (r) Pervez Musharraf, but in this so-called democratic government, more than 430 bullet-riddled bodies of youth had been found dumped and thousands of political workers had gone missing.

"A large number of people, including women and children, have gone missing from Kohlu and Dera Bugti where military operation was carried out. It is feared that they have been buried in mass graves," VBMP president said.

He regretted that the rulers had made tall claims of recovering the missing persons before the elections, alleging that they (rulers) had now become partners in the kill-and-dump incidents.

He said that it had been proved before the Supreme Court that government functionaries were behind 95 percent of the missing persons' cases. "We ask the Supreme Court to make a legislation about government functionaries," he said.

Terming the recovery of missing persons a challenge for the Supreme Court, Nasrullah Baloch said the chief justice of Pakistan, who had taken up the case of missing persons, was the last hope for the relatives of missing persons.

Journalist Shahzada Zulfiqar said the media was playing its due role in highlighting the issue of missing persons and discovery of bullet-riddled bodies, particularly the local media, despite a lack of resources and security. "We have lost 18 journalists... and their family members blame government functionaries for their deaths," he said.

Supreme Court Bar Association Vice President Jahanzaib Jadon condemned the recovery of decomposed bodies of Baloch youth and targeted killings, saying no religion and civilised society allowed whisking of innocent people and throwing away their bodies.

Zahoor Ahmed Shahwani said the HRCP was taking the issue of missing persons and violation of human rights in Balochistan, and had presented several reports in this connection.

The speakers claimed that more than 14,000 people had gone missing, and now their bodies were being thrown away.

End.

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