Balochistan University students in Pakistan re-launch protest over missing students

Students of Balochistan University in Quetta have once resumed their protest after authorities failed to find the two missing students who were allegedly kidnapped from the university premises earlier this month

Nov 19, 2021
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Balochistan University students in Pakistan re-launch protest over missing students (Photo: Dawn)

Students of Balochistan University in Quetta have once resumed their protest after authorities failed to find the two missing students who were allegedly kidnapped from the university premises earlier this month. According to a report by The Friday Times, ten days have elapsed since the university students began their protest for the safe recovery of their fellow students -- Faseeh Baloch and Sohail Baloch.

Earlier, the authorities had held discussions with the protesters so that educational activities could resume but the talk failed.

On November 9, the students had locked the campus gates and also boycotted classes and exams to protest against the inaction in the matter.

The agitation was halted on November 13 after the government assured that the missing students will be recovered by November 16.

The Friday Times quoted the Baloch Student Organisation (BSO) as saying that the government has failed to keep its promise, as the students have still not been recovered, and asked for more time. A university spokesperson said the CCTV footage of the incident did not have any indication of an abduction.

Balochistan has reported several cases of enforced disappearances so far. Though several national and international organisation have raised their voices against the issue, the Pakistan parliament has passed the bill criminalizing enforced disappearances, which was drafted by the Ministry of Human Rights in 2019, UNI news agency said. 

The Baloch have been mounting an insurgency against the Pakistani state for several decades for a variety of endemic grievances. It has largely been a low-level insurgency, and Pakistan has often accused India of supporting the Baloch separatism, a charge that India denies.

Some Baloch leaders say Balochistan’s integration into Pakistan was done forcefully at the time of the partition of the subcontinent in 1947 and that, being  a resource-rich province, instead of the people benefitting from those resources, they end up in other parts of Pakistan, according to Hussain Haqqani, a former Pakistani diplomat, in an interview to The Atlantic. 

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