Opinion

Hazaras bleeds and so do our hearts

Maryam Zaheer

Just when we had thought that India’s pre poll state terrorism had ended, we were hit where it hurt the most; Balochistan and the target were the eternally marginalised Hazara Shiite Pakistanis.

After escaping Emir Abdul Rahman Khan and Afghani Taliban years ago, they’re met with the same fate in their new home. But this time, the malicious attempts are not government or agencies backed nor are the Muslims of opposite sects attacking them because of contrasting beliefs.

This time, it’s the international enemy, very cleverly targetting the already hurt and bruised minority group in order to attempt to turn them against the country. It’s a part of the larger plan to materialise India’s aim of separating Balochistan by not only attacking the province they’ve already done a lot of homework on (although busted terribly by the security forces) but also the community that, they think, can be made to turn against the state using both the religion and province cards.

But as I see streams of blood of innocent Hazaras flow, expecting hatred in retaliation, words of that young Hazara, who lost his father to violence, that he said standing right next to his grave echo and shun all such thoughts: “This is our country. Some people tell us to leave it. But I ask, if we all leave, who’ll make this country strong? We’ll have to support each other to strengthen our country, to make the state sovereign, the country prosperous and peaceful.”

These words scream of failure of all the schemes of our one declared enemy; India. Commander Kulbhushan Jadav’s (while India has, till now, failed to prove him to not have been a RAW agent) confirmatory statements regarding India’s plan to attack minority groups to create unrest, are a glimpse of the mess they’ve always been making in our country. India Afghan nexus against Pakistan is clear as a bright day and thousands of innocent Pakistani lives have been lost to it.

It’s really unfair though, to advocate pseudonationalism by saying the victims are “Muslims” and “Pakistanis” (which they obviously are) instead of acknowledging their Shia Hazara and Baloch identity in attempts to overlook the misery their ethnic group has been undergoing. But this should not deviate us from the truth of the enemy’s sly plan of targetting the minority group and it shouldn’t be interpreted as merely a product of sectarian enmity which it most definitely isn’t.

We have sacrificed our armed forces officers like Maj. Sohail Abid shaheed, who’s son, just like sons of all our Hazara Shiite brothers, would grow up as an orphan.

Now, it’s our duty to give the enemy’s poison its antidote. The hate our minority group is getting from across the border needs to be not only neutralized but overpowered by our love towards them, provision of justice and punishments to the criminals. While the enemy is making enthusiastic attempts to destabilise our country, we have to take it upon ourselves to not let them win. The ball, now, is in our court. A sensible and effective shot needs to be played. All the top guns should at least visit the victims’ families. Courts need to give speedy justice to them.

If you see anyone using the incident to fuel their own dying spark of anti nationalism, know that they’re one of those who would always be on a lookout for an opportunity to criticise Pakistan only. They aren’t to be taken seriously.

And finally, apologies to Balochistan Hazara Shiites from all of us. We’re sorry and we’re by your side. We’ll stand by you till justice is served because this is your home and you should never be afraid to live here.

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