The Unfortunate Incident of Achakzai’s Murder

It was indeed another addition to the bare wounds of this province that shook the entire nation so deeply and rightly so. The barbarity of the act perhaps cannot be explained in words where Asad Khan Achakzai, the former Information Secretary of the Awami National Party (ANP), was abducted and killed in cold blood. Such incidents only indicate towards greater problems and fault lines in the overall political structure and the way Balochistan is governed.

It is, indeed, beyond any doubt that Balochistan is seething under the fire of multiple kinds of terrorism and therefore the focus of the security forces has been greater here with security expenditure eating large chunks of the budget in the province. However, despite all the efforts for peace and stability, it seems that peace and security remain elusive as ever in this beleaguered province. The presence of paramilitary forces and number of check-posts from Air Port Road to the Nau Ehsaar where the unfortunate incident took place and wherefrom the dead body was carried and later thrown into a well raise many question marks about the efficacy of such security arrangements.

It seems that the subsequent governments had only romanticized with the idea of peace and security but no tangible solutions have ever been evolved. Some have romanticized with littering the entire city with CCTV camera while others have romanticized with making as may checkpoints as possible with day long frisking of the passers-by and general public. But all in vain.

The real problem lies within the way the entire province is governed. If real peace and security is desired in the province, the government and the powers that be need to have a paradigm shift towards the concept of security and stop making adhoc arrangements. A permanent solution would be enhancing the capacity of Police which has the core responsibility, training and specialization in tackling the security issues within the urban centres. Police and its intelligence agencies can perform better than hundred thousand checkpoints by any other force with no police training. Along with the capacity building, the government must focus on making police and in B areas Levies a professional force, free from corrupt practices, reliable wherein the masses should have confidence. This can be done by introducing modern forensic technology and by reinvigorating these forces with young, committed and well qualified youth through competitive examinations. The government must do away with the archaic and colonial thana culture if it has a will to give a semblance of security to the masses of this province. A revisiting of entire political and governance structure in Balochistan is the only solution with genuine leadership who have will and courage to take bold decisions to implement any change to break the status quo.

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