Baloch Soldiers In Pakistan Army – A Step In The Right Direction
By Sikander Hayat
I do not know if anyone else has noticed but to me the news that 4000 Baloch youth has been recruited in the Pakistan army with another 10000 on their way to joining the force in near future seemed to be a major strategic shift by the Pakistan army.
It is true that the rules on education were relaxed for this intake but other than that all other criterion for the recruitment was in place. This batch of soldiers from Baluchistan thoroughly deserved their place in Pakistan army.
Let’s first look at the past and to be honest Baloch youngsters were never at the forefront of the people joining Pakistan army due to the strict rules applied by the army. Baloch people felt alienated and given the central position of the army in the Pakistani society, they felt that they are not part of the Pakistani society. It is also a fact that many Balochis have fought and died for Pakistan but it is also true that their number was not comparable to the other ethnic group’s representation in Pakistan army.
Now this single move of including the Baloch in the army and making them the stakeholders in the state of Pakistan by virtue of their inclusion in the Pakistani army will make the Baloch feel part of the whole enterprise.
There is no doubt that the rebellion which simmers in Baluchistan from time to time is due the fact that Balochis felt that they were outside the circle. They felt that an army of outsiders is present in their midst but this one single step has huge ramification in removing that feeling of injustice. Off course this is just a single step but a step nonetheless in the right direction. Baluchistan should be given a 75% stake in all its mineral wealth which includes gas & precious metals to make Baluchistan the richest province of Pakistan. All federating units of Pakistan should have 75% share of the wealth created in the respective units. A rich & prosperous Balochistan will be a great boost to the Pakistani economy and vice versa.
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