June 24, 2011

Taliban in Balochistan

From the Newspaper (18 hours ago) Today

INTERIOR Minister Rehman Malik has denied the presence of the Taliban’s governing body in the Quetta Shoora in Balochistan. It seems he is fond of living in a state of denial.

However, it is far from the reality on the ground because the Taliban are not only present in the province, they are active as well.

Several reputed international newspapers and magazines have deeply investigated the reports of the Taliban presence in
Quetta and adjacent districts of the province.

They have reached the conclusion that the Taliban are actively planning their operations inside Quetta or surrounding districts to be executed in Afghanistan against allied troops.

They are able to maintain a strong presence inside the province with the covert or overt support of Pakistan’s Inter-Services

Even some local members of the government privately admit that the Taliban are now an undeniable reality in the province.

A councilor of the local government told Newsweek that the Taliban have set up stations in his frontier town of Kuchlak where they stay temporarily while going back to or coming from Afghanistan. He alleges that they are being supported by what he calls the ‘black legs’ (an obvious reference to the ISI).

The Taliban presence in the province, especially in Quetta, is so strong that it doesn’t require keen observation to feel it. The common people living in Pakthun-dominated suburbs of the metropolis like Pashtunabad know it well that the Taliban are an unmistakable reality.

They are not just found in suburbs of the capital, they can also be seen in some popular markets of Quetta like Liaquat Bazar and Jinnah Road.

Despite Taliban’s presence in the province, Mr Malik is in a state of denial, flatly rejecting their presence inside the province.

The reason could be that Mr Malik wishes to push all the boundaries to toe the establishment’s line.

Our security establishment views Afghan Taliban as its ‘strategic assets’ that will supposedly further its interest in post-US Afghanistan.

If history is any indicator, such policy is bound to backfire afflicting severe damage to the very fabric of Pakistani society.

Supporting, encouraging and lodging the Taliban won’t do any good to the country, it will rather prove catastrophic.


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