September 01, 2009
Islamabad/Lahore, Sep 1 (PTI) A leading Baloch nationalist leader was found dead more than a week after he was abducted by armed men, triggering violent protests in Pakistan's southwestern Balochistan province that claimed at least two lives.
The body of Balochistan National Movement leader Rasool Baksh Mengal, which was found hanging from a tree in Lasbela district of Balochistan yesterday, bore marks of torture, reports said.
Mengal, a well-known human rights activist, was abducted by unidentified men on August 23. Mengal's son had accused intelligence agencies of abducting him and expressed the fear that he might be killed.
Two persons of Punjabi-origin were killed as violence broke out in various Baloch-dominated districts last evening after Mengal's body was found. Protesters set fire to banks and government offices in Maskhy area, the reports said.
Rezaul H Laskar and M Zulqernain
A shutter down strike is being observed in certain parts of Balochistan against the killing of Baloch National Movement leader Rasool Bakhsh Mengal.
Rasool Bakhsh went missing on August 23rd from Uthal area of Lasbela district and his body was found by police on the 30th of August from Bela area of the same district.
The call for the strike had been given by the Baloch National Front which was also endorsed by other Baloch nationalist parties.
The strike is being observed in Turbat, Awaran, Panjgur, Khuzdar, Kalat and some other parts of the province.
Sources say that all markets and shopping centres in these areas are completely closed and no business activity is being witnessed anywhere. Traffic was minimal on the roads while the turn out in offices and schools was also low.
The local administration has taken strict security measures to avert any untoward incident.
BNF in a statement on Tuesday strongly condemned the killing of Junior Joint Secretary Rasool Baksh Mengal who was first abducted and then later killed.
They were of the view that such acts of violence and brutalities would not create hurdles for their justified goals.
They termed the killing of Rasool Baksh as gruesome and demanded that the perpetrators not be spared at any cost.
Taking belligerent notice of the ghastly act of hostility, the BNF announced the three-day complete shutter down wheel-jam strike.—Online