Pakistan Observer

They open a new front in Quetta

Monday, April 16, 2012 - THE incidents in Quetta, killing eight members of Shia Hazara community Saturday shocked people across the country and resulted in a strong reaction from the affected sect forcing the administration to call in Frontier Corps troops to maintain law and order. This type of sectarian infighting if allowed to go on unchecked, would be a severe blow to the very unity and survival of Pakistan.

Balochistan in general and Quetta in particular has become a den of criminal gangs as every day there are incidents of target killings. This was the fourth attack against the members of Hazara community in a week while twenty six people have been killed in the past fortnight. The two separate incidents Saturday were the handiwork of organised gangs and there should be no doubt in any body’s mind that it is a well orchestrated conspiracy by foreign powers to create ethnic and sectarian hatred in a strategically important part of the country. The attacks by unidentified armed men are being carried out by the locals but it is for certain that they are being trained and financed by the enemies of the country who according to analysts want to send a clear message to the Pakistani leadership to either tow their line or face serious consequences. We say so because Sunnis and Shias have been living together for centuries and barring some minor incidents, there had been complete unity in their ranks. The sudden spur in target killings indicates that there is no writ of the provincial government and law enforcement agencies have no capacity to deal with the alarming situation. Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry during hearing of the law and order situation case in Quetta lamented that none of the authorities are concerned with the deteriorating law and order situation in Balochistan. What is more astonishing is that the huge Provincial Cabinet, a great burden on the exchequer, seems to be least perturbed over the killings. Some of the Ministers are accused of involvement in kidnappings and killings and the Chief Minister, who appears to be only interested in enjoying the perks and privileges, has no control over the Cabinet and the administration. A day earlier Governor Zulfikar Magsi warned that if peace was not restored in Quetta there was danger of civil war and the army might take over which would further mess up the situation. We are of the considered opinion that now that inimical foreign powers have opened a new front in Quetta to create sectarian disharmony and pitch one sect against the other, and the provincial government has totally failed, there is no other way out but to impose Governor rule to deal with the anti state elements with an iron hand to restore peace and order.
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