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Pak booked Baloch nationalists as it failed to buy them, says defence expert

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New Delhi: With Pakistan registering five cases, including sedition, against three top Baloch nationalist leaders for allegedly backing Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s words on Balochistan in his Independence Day speech, defence expert Sushnat Sareen on Tuesday said they refused to be sold at the hands of Pakistan and continued with their freedom struggle from foreign asylums.

“The leaders who were booked are those whom Pakistan tried to buy (bribed); some of them sold themselves to Pakistan and returned home. Taking their names would not be appropriate, but everybody knows who they are. They have been a part of government and wanted to be there. However, there are some committed leaders, who have waged a war against Pakistan for their freedom. As Pakistan could not buy them, it has registered fake cases against them, and would now seek their extradition,” Sareen told ANI, adding “expect this from Pakistan”.

Talking about the nationalist leaders’ support to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s remarks on Balochistan, he said, “The image of Balochistan – the prevailing situation over there and human rights violations – was very clear to the world, and thus, when Prime Minister Modi talked about human rights’ violation there, it was hailed by pro-freedom Baloch leaders.”

Sareen said the sections under which the trio was booked exposed Pakistan’s nervousness.

“It also exposes the ground realities; how Pakistanis, who pats on the backs of the Kashmiri separatist leaders even as they are openly supporting terrorism and are free to move and speak to Pakistani leaders. How can one compare Kashmiri separatists with Baloch nationalist leaders, who were forced to leave their houses and to live in exile due to atrocities on them by the Pakistani establishment??

“In the past 10-12 years, hundreds of thousands of Baloch people went missing; they were kept in torture cells and were killed by the Pakistani military. These are realities, and nothing could be better than exposing these realities to the world,” he added.

The Pakistan Police have booked three leaders Brahamdagh Bugti, Harbiyar Marri and Banuk Karima Baloch for supporting the Prime Minister’s statements on Balochistan.

Acting District Police Officer, Muhammad Ashraf Jatak said the cases were registered on the complaints at five police stations in Balochistan’s Khuzdar area. Baloch leaders were booked under various sections of the Pakistan Penal Code.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his Independence Day address thanked the people of Balochistan, the people of Gilgit, and the people of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir for the goodwill that they had shown towards him. Baloch leaders thanked the Prime Minister for his statement on Baluchistan and requested India to raise the issue of human rights violations and systematic genocide by the Pakistani army.

Meanwhile, the U.S. has expressed concern over human rights situation in Gilgit-Baltistan and asked all parties in Pakistan to resolve the issues through a valid political process.

When asked about the allegations of large scale human rights violation in Gilgit-Baltistan, a State Department Spokesperson said that they do have concerns about the human rights situation there and have reported that for several years in their Human Rights Report.

The spokesperson said, the US has consistently urged all parties in Pakistan to work out their differences peaceably and through a valid political process. (ANI)

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