KARACHI: Two students of Karachi University, who were purportedly taken away from their house in the metropolis on June 7, returned home, Nasarullah Baloch, chairman of non-profit organisation Voice of Balochistan Missing Persons, confirmed on Tuesday.
Baloch said Doda Ellahi and Ghamshad Baloch returned to their home near Maskan Chowrangi in the Gulshan-i-Iqbal neighbourhood after 3:00 am. “They both belong to the Kech district of Balochistan,” he added.
Their relatives and members of civil society organisations had set up a camp outside the Karachi Press Club for the last four days. Late on Sunday, they managed to reach the Sindh Assembly’s main gate where they staged a sit-in for the release of the missing students.
Police and district administration held talks with them, persuading them to vacate the place.
The protest organisers accused the police of manhandling women and children. They said the Sindh police had retracted their promise of arranging a meeting of the missing students’ relatives with Counter Terrorism Department officials on Monday.
Therefore, they said, they again staged a sit-in near the Sindh Assembly building where the police manhandled and arrested protesters.
Enforced disappearances have long been documented by local and international rights groups in Pakistan, and in 2011, the government formed a commission of inquiry to document and investigate cases of the disappeared, known as “missing persons”.
Since 2011, the commission has received complaints in at least 8,154 cases, of which 2,274 remain unresolved, according to the commission’s report for September 2021.
The military and security agencies under it have repeatedly denied committing abuses, blaming the killings on an array of militant groups active in the resource-rich province that borders both Afghanistan and Iran.
But human rights groups have gathered some evidence from relatives of the disappeared that raises serious questions over the conduct of the security establishment.
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