Grant Shapps, UK Minister and Secretary of State has raised the issue of Dr Deen Mohammad’s kidnapping with Foreign & Commonwealth Office of UK last month. The Foreign Office in a reply said that the UK Government is concerned about the reports of forced disappearances and extra-judicial killings in Pakistan.
In the response letter to Shapps, Lord Tariq Ahmad of Wimbledon, the Minister of State for South Asia and the Commonwealth said that the situation of human rights is being monitored by the UK and concerns are being raised regularly about the need to respect human rights and the rule of law at the highest levels within the Government of Pakistan. “We advocate greater tolerance and action against human rights violations and abuses,” he added in the letter.
Shapps raised the concern with Lord Tariq Ahmed’s office after Hakeem Wadhela, president of Baloch National Movement UK Branch contacted him about the issue. He assured Wadhela that he would contact the foreign and commonwealth office about the multiple cases of human rights violations and abductions taking place in Balochistan and will find out what actions are being made by the British government in regards to these issues.
Lord Ahmad, in his letter to Shapps, confirmed that he had raised concerns about human rights with Pakistan’s High Commissioner to the UK multiple times including on 23rd June 2020.
The disappearance of Dr. Deen Mohammad Baloch
Though the story of Dr Deen Mohammad’s abduction appears in mainstream media every once in a while since 2009, the details of the incident are still obscure, partly due to the fact that the Pakistani government has been conducting large-scale human rights abuse against the Baloch people. Pakistani security forces abducted Baloch on the night of 28th June 2009 from Ornach area of Khuzdar Balochistan.
Dr Dee Mohammad was a member of the Baloch National Movement. Till date, no one knows where he is or what had happened to him after the alleged abduction. His daughters, Sammi and Mehlab Baloch are struggling to find information about their father.
Speech of Sammi Baloch, Daughter of Missing Dr Deen Mohammad Baloch
The family still believes that he is alive and they have knocked every court’s doors in Pakistan. Even after countless protests, press conferences and hunger strike camps, they have got no response from the Pakistani government about their father. They have approached the United Nations as well for the safe return of their father.
In 2013, daughters of Dr Baloch marched from Quetta to Karachi, and then to Islamabad covering 3000 KM in 116 days but got no information about their father. In an interview in 2017, elder daughter of Dr Bloch, Sammi Baloch said that they had used all possible democratic and peaceful channels to find out information about their father and possible safe recovery. However, no one had listened to their plea for help. She said if her father had committed any crime, he should have been presented to a court of law and punished as per the requirement.
Baloch’s daughters are associated with a group named Voice of Baloch Missing Persons to gather support in their quest to find their father, but till date, there do not have any information from any forum regarding their missing father. In a recent interview, Sammi said, “Only my family can understand the pain that we have been going through after the enforced disappearance of my father. We have knocked all the doors for justice, but I have to say with regret that 11 years have passed, but we are still to get justice. Once again, I am sitting in this (VBMP) camp. I appeal to Human Rights Organizations to play their role in providing me with justice.” She demanded that they should be treated as a citizen of the country and provided justice.
Role of Baloch National Movement UK Branch
Niaz Zehri, General Secretary of BNM UK Branch, in an interview with The Balochistan Post said that it is a part of BNM’s policy to contact the Parliamentarians and raise awareness about the issues of Balochistan. They are working on making people aware of the situation regularly. He said that their goal is to inform the world about the problems people of the Baloch face on a daily basis. “Our goal is to tell them why all these human rights violations are taking place in Balochistan,” he added.