Human rights violations, sectarian targeted killings and state-led terrorism continue in Gilgit under government patronage. After one hundred days of the tragedy of Hunza, where a father and his son were killed by law enforcement agents, government has failed to arrest the murderers. It has rather resorted to arresting and torturing political leader Babajan Hunzai and twelve other activists, which shows absence of law and justice in the region. This was stated by chairperson of Gilgit-Baltistan United Movement, Engineer Manzoor Parwana. He claimed that Gilgit-Baltistan ranked top in South Asia when counting the number of incidents of human rights violations in the year 2011. He accused the so-called provincial government for not only failing to control but intentionally supporting and promoting state-led terrorism, sectarianism, lawlessness, targeted killings and corruption which has engulfed Gilgit-Baltistan. He said that GBUM will issue white paper in this regard and details will be sent to the international human rights organizations including the UNO.
Manzoor accused the government of Mehdi Shah for arresting him on false charges and keeping in the lock up for several weeks. He stated that the government established false cases of sedition and terrorism to malign him and hurt his political career. He said that political activists associated with GBUM are being harassed and face political revenge. “Progressive leaders like Babajan and his dozens of fellows continue to linger in jail. There is complete censorship on freedom of speech and expression in Gilgit-Baltistan. Barring workers of Pakistan Peoples Party, all other political activists and social workers face harassment from government agencies.”
Parwana requests the international community to pressure Pakistan to pay attention to human rights violations in the disputed territory of Gilgit-Baltistan, so that natives could live a free life, a life of their choice, and a life with dignity and basic rights. He warned that a large scale human catastrophe awaits us if international community fails to pay attention to political and constitutional impasse in Gilgit-Baltistan.
Chairperson of Gilgit-Baltistan United Movement
November 30, 2011