Thu. Dec 9th, 2021

The Massacre of Hazaras in Our Country

By Mesum Abbas

“No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.”

― Nelson Mandela, Long Walk to Freedom

The constitution of Pakistan grants all the fundamental rights envisaged in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights:
1. Article-36 of the constitution of Pakistan provides protection to minorities.
2. The UN Declaration on the Rights of Persons Belonging to National or Ethnic, Religious, and Linguistic Minorities – 1992,  ensures protection of the rights of minorities.
Article – 1 of the Declaration provides, “States shall protect the existence and the national or ethnic, cultural, religious and linguistic identity of minorities within their respective territories and shall encourage conditions for the promotion of that identity” and “States shall adopt appropriate legislative and other measures to achieve those ends”.
The state of Pakistan has constantly failed to provide this universally accepted protection to Hazaras, who have been natives of this land for over 150 years, having migrated and settled here from the neighboring countries. Mass migration of the Hazars took place in the time of Amir Abdul Rahman Khan of Afghanistan, due to persecution on religious and ethnic basis.
According to a report prepared by the National Commission of Human Rights, the Hazaras, having originally lived in Central Afghanistan, migrated from Afghanistan to Baluchistan about 150 years ago and settled here. Mass migration of Hazara population to Baluchistan took place in the late 19th century due to  persecution during the reign of King Abdur Rahman. Having a history of persecution, Hazaras have not been fortunate enough to be identified with the mainstream even in modern times. In the past three decades, two thousand Hazaras have been killed by Taliban in Mazar Sharif and Bamiyan, Afghanistan, according to the report.
Unfortunately, their ordeal have not come an end even after migrating to Pakistan. They have constantly been victimized, attacked and massacred by sectarian militant groups, as well as Jahadi outfits. They have increasingly been attacked since the 9/11 incident and the resultant war on terror in Afghanistan.
The state of Pakistan has failed to protect his citizens from the militants. Some even accuse the state of patronizing militants and terrorists, allowing them free hand to operate against the already persecuted Hazara community.
The recent slaughtering of 11 Hazara miners, claimed by ISIS, has raised questions about the writ of the State of Pakistan, as lawlessness seems to be the norm in Baluchistan, instead of being an exception.
Worst policymaking has created anarchy in the society. Pashtuns, Hazaras, Baloch, Gilgitis and Baltis continue to express deep resentments against the State’s behavior, which doesn’t augur well for the future.
For betterment and stability of our State, we need to ensure safety of the citizens, provide justice, and offer equal opportunities to the various groups of people that call themselves Pakistanis.
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