QUETTA: Four days after wrapping up her protest camp in Islamabad, the Baloch Yakjehti Committee leader, Dr Mahrang Baloch, addressed a massive public gathering on Saturday and said a “revolution” was brewing in Balochistan.
In her address at the Shahwani Stadium in Quetta, Dr Baloch also called the ongoing movement against enforced disappearance and operations “a watershed moment”.
The gathering was attended by thousands, including women, political workers and students from different areas of the province. “Today, the participants have proved that they are with their mothers and sisters in their struggle for the recovery of their loved ones,” she said.
“We proudly hold our heads high because of you,” she said while referring to the charged crowd. The protest leader added that the people of Balochistan have been raising their voices for the last 75 years against the “atrocities and injustices” committed by the state.
While criticising the government, she said those in power were “deaf and dumb” who do not listen to the people.
“They have weapons, but we have the courage to continue our struggle against the atrocities and injustices,” she said, vowing that the movement would continue and they would not abandon it.
She claimed the government used all its resources against the protestors, but they refused to budge from their demands. “As a daughter of Balochistan, I appeal to the people to continue this awami (public) movement as it is our mandate.”
While claiming that people across the province are supporting the movement, Dr Baloch said it was not a sit-in or a traditional public meeting. Rather, it was “a voice of Baloch people from Nokundi to Parom and Koh-i-Suleman to Makran”.
She emphasised that Baloch are ideologues and that her movement has broken the decades-old shackles of fear imposed by the state.
Today’s gathering carries “the fragrance of the revolution”, which was a “dream of the martyrs”. “The movement which originated in Turbat after the injustice done to Balaach and his family has now become the voice of all oppressed Baloch people,” Dr Baloch said while referring to the alleged extrajudicial killing of Balach Maula Bakhsh by the Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) in an encounter.
She added her movement was “for the survival of Balochistan”, and she will continue to defend it.
Dr Baloch said during the protest in Islamabad, the elderly women only requested for their loved ones to be presented before courts, but the Constitution of Pakistan failed to deliver them justice.
“Our killers were made to sit in front of us in Islamabad,” she said, adding that the so-called rulers of Islamabad cannot provide justice to the Baloch people.
Mama Qadeer Baloch, a veteran campaigner for the recovery of missing persons, Sammi Deen Baloch, Sibghatullah Shahjee and others also addressed the event, which continued for several hours.
Earlier on Friday, Dr Baloch and other protesters were welcomed by a huge crowd of thousands in the Sariab area of Quetta upon their return from the federal capital.