India – Azad Singh Rathore, in his latest published book, titled “Balochistan: The Heights of Oppression” (published by Partridge India), presents a chronicle of the Baloch history and its homeland and uncovers the betrayals and injustice Pakistan inflicted on them as well as the resistance and insurgencies in Balochistan. The renowned Baloch scholar and famous writer Dr. Naseer Dashti has also written an exclusive chapter in this book.
Tao Pa Sarani Goddaga Zende Haylaan koshe
Pa Sendaga Daasht kane Pulla’n Che Bo Taalanya
– Atta Saad, Poet & architect of modern Balochi poetry
Can you, by cutting the heads, from the bodies,
Kill the living thoughts and ideas?
Can you, by wrenching, The Flowers from branches,
Stop their fragrance from spreading?
Never has an independent civilization suffered the kind of oppression and tyranny as the Baloch have for centuries now. A classic example of rich land, poor people! A land so rich in natural resources yet so poor that its owners are even deprived of basic amenities. Over decades, facts have been manipulated, lives slain, human rights violated and the canvas of an abundant civilization tainted. What Pakistan chooses to call an “economic liability” is actually a saviour of its economy. Balochistan has been playing the role of a stepchild who has been abused to the core, yet serves the purpose of earning the daily bread. Surprisingly, a heart-rendering tale of a culpable homicide, which many have not dared to find out!
The country of the Baloch has been known as Balochistan since the founding of the first Baloch confederacy in the 12th century. The whole region was populated most heavily by ethnic Baloch people and thus, named this region Balochistan, the homeland of Baloch people. The Greater Balochistan region was remotely located far away from the Kingdom of Persia in the west and equally at distance from Indian princely states in the east. In the present time, Balochistan, a part of Greater Balochistan, is a disputed remote territory between the Sindh province of Pakistan and the western international border of Iran since 1947. Geopolitical developments in the area divided Greater Balochistan into three separate countries. This book mainly focuses on present Balochistan, the region under the occupation of Pakistan. It describes the history, culture, and the Baloch people’s suffering from the last seven decades of pain, atrocity, and oppressions that Pakistan has given them to suppress their voice. A voice that wants to save the Baloch culture, people, and homeland from Pakistan’s army and its leadership.
It is interesting and rather disturbing that not many politicians or experts of foreign policies have touched upon the subject much. Balochistan still remains an untold tale. A world that is so near to us, yet so mysteriously hidden from view. Azad, with this book, has tried to touch on many aspects of the land including its history, economy, socio-political issues, and its people. One can see the amount of research that has gone into the illustrations of a place that remains out of bound for almost all.
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Published in Balochistan Affairs