Pakistan: late journalist's keep tries to censor free speech
KARACHI -- A freelance writer and alleged keep of a late sports journalist tried to stop free speech at a conference on Baloch missing persons at the Karachi Press Club.
Nargis Khanum could not tolerate the truth being told about Balochistan's forced occupation by Pakistan.
Baloch historian Prof. Saba Dashtiyari was narrating the details when Khanum went up to the stage to strike him.
There are more than 1,000 involuntariy and enforced disappearances, locally called missing persons, in Balochistan. These people have been abducted by the Military Intelligence and its sister agency the infamous Inter-Services Intelligence for demanding independence of their homeland.
Khanum, who is originally from India and who came to Karachi in the 1960s, was once associated with The Star evening tabloid in Karachi.
After great difficulty the organizers succeeded in prevailing upon Khanum to allow the meeting to progress.
"I have the right to expression," Dashtiyari insisted. "If you believe in reality, if you believe in truth."
Khanum calls herself a supporter of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement, whose chief Altaf Hussain is on record of calling the partition of the Indian subcontinent one of the worst tragedies in human history.
Millions of immigrants from India got property and power in Pakistan's Sind province and for this reason call Pakistan Mumlikkat-i-Khudad or "a state given by God."
Khanum was allegedly a concubine of reknowned sports journalist the late Ali Kabir, 73, who died in October 2006.
The late Kabir used to work for the pro-establishment Dawn newspaper, whose spineless Memon owners called Haroons prospered under different martial law regimes. Both Dawn and The Star belong to the same group and are published from Haroon House.
Pakistan's infamous Inter Services Intelligence is known for using unscrupulous elements to silence the voice of dissent.
Texas-sized Balochistan is in the throes of an independence struggle. It was forcibly occupied by Pakistan on March 27, 1948.