A young Baloch poet named Mansoor Azad went missing in Karachi after being arrested by the Pakistani security forces a few days ago.
Close friends of Azad claimed that he was arrested by the Pakistani security forces on 1st April in a hotel in Karachi. He was then “forcibly disappeared” and has not been heard from since.
Baloch academics, especially revolutionary poets and singers, have been frequently targeted in past for their inciting poetry, allegedly by the Pakistani forces. Saba Dashtyari, a prominent professor and poet at the University of Balochistan, was shot dead in Quetta in 2011. Rehmatullah Shohaz, another eminent Baloch poet, was gunned down in Buleda in 2015.
Ghulam Muhammad Saqib, a Brohi singer, was killed in the broad daylight in March 2019 in Khuzdar. Baloch poet Anwar Sahib Khan was abducted in a raid on his house in Pasni in 2015. Meer Ahmad Baloch, a singer and poet of great stature, was forced into exile after a severe crackdown on him by the Pakistani security forces.
“Enforced disappearances” have been gaining momentum in Balochistan for the past couple of weeks. Tens of individuals have gone missing from several cities and towns throughout Balochistan without a clue. A few days ago, four individuals, including relatives of rights activist Mama Qadeer Baloch, were “abducted” from Soorab by the Pakistani forces. Two of the detainees were released and returned back home safely on Monday, but the other two are still missing.