Mastung attack: Home minister blames RAW as death toll climbs to 22

Published: May 30, 2015
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PHOTO: NASEEM JAMES/EXPRESS

PHOTO: NASEEM JAMES/EXPRESS

PHOTO: NASEEM JAMES/EXPRESS PHOTO: AFP A file photo of Frontier Corps personnel. PHOTO: EXPRESS

QUETTA: Balochistan Home Minister Sarfaraz Bugti laid the blame on India’s spy agency Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) for the deadly attack on bus passengers in Mastung late Friday night  

“RAW is involved in the incident because India is against the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor agreement,” Bugti said at a press conference in Quetta.

Bugti added that so far seven suspected militants were killed in search operations in which 500 security personnel are taking part.

The death toll of the horrific Mastung massacre that took place in late Friday night has risen to 22, after Balochistan Levies found another body this morning.

PHOTO: NASEEM JAMES/EXPRESS

Earlier during the day, a large number of people including relatives of the victims of the Mastung tragedy staged a sit-in in front of the Governor House to protest the brutal kidnapping and butchering of the bus passengers.

According to reports, the protesters also laid down dead bodies of 16 people in front of the governor’s residence. The protesters also tried to enter the CM house but were pushed back by the police when they started shelling.

PHOTO: NASEEM JAMES/EXPRESS

The protesters later agreed to bury their relatives after they spoke with Chief Minister Balochistan Abdul Malik Baloch.

“Security forces are taking action against the culprits,” he told protesters.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif also telephoned CM Balochistan and told him that an All Parties Conference will be held in Quetta some time next week to discuss how to promote peace in the region.

PHOTO: NASEEM JAMES/EXPRESS

FC conduct search operation

In the wee hours of Saturday, Frontier Corps (FC) officials carried out a search operation in the mountainous regions of Khad Khocha and the adjoining areas of Mastung.

According to a press release issued by the FC, 200 FC officials are taking part in the search operation and are being provided with helicopters along with help from the special op wing.

Read: Militants kill 19 passengers in Mastung after forcing them off bus

During the operation, two miscreants were killed and ammunition was recovered from them.

“Every aspect of terrorism will be eliminated from the area,” an FC spokesperson said.

In a grisly execution-style attack, twenty passengers were lined up and shot dead by unidentified gunmen after being pulled off two buses in Balochistan’s Mastung district.

Coming from the Pashtun-dominated area of Pishin, the two Karachi-bound buses were intercepted and stopped in Gidrang near Mastung district’s Kadocha area by as many as 40 gunmen around 9:00pm, according to security forces and Balochistan home department officials.

“At least 25 passengers were forced off the buses at gunpoint,” a senior home department official said.

Read: FC kill 5 suspected militants in Mastung search operation

“The gunmen killed at least 19 passengers and wounded one,” Balochistan Home Secretary Akbar Hussain Durrani told reporters after the grisly incident. The sole injured passenger later died of his wounds.

“None of them [the victims] were settlers or Shia,” Durrani said.

His statement was confirmed later by Home Minister Sarfraz Bugti who said all of the victims were ‘Pashtun’.

No group has yet  claimed responsibility for the attack but Baluch separatists demanding greater autonomy have been waging an insurgency for years and the province is also riven by sectarian strife and violence.

‘Treat culprits of Mastung massacre the same as Peshawar incident’

Balochistan Chief Minister Abdul Malik Baloch requested the prime minister and Army Chief General Raheel Sharif to treat the perpetrators of the Mastung attack the same way that the culprits of Army Public School were brought to justice.

“We have requested the premier and army chief to treat the Mastung incident the same way as Peshawar attack,” Baloch said at a press conference.

Read: Main executor of Peshawar school attack captured: ISPR

“We will be using all resources to bring peace to the province,” the chief minister said. “The government is currently reviewing the security on all national highways.”

Addressing the relatives of the deceased, the chief minister said, “We stand in solidarity with the relatives of the victims of the Mastung attack.”

Baloch also announced three days of mourning and appealed to traders to keep their shops closed.

Also speaking at the conference, Leader of the Opposition in Balochistan Assembly, Maulana Abdul Wasay said “the incident is trying to create clashes between two brother nations, the Pashtun and the Baloch.”

Balochistan assembly condemns attack

Members from the Treasury and Opposition benches in the Balochistan Assembly on Saturday united in passing a resolution condemning the Mastung incident in which 22 passengers were gunned down on Friday night.

During Saturday’s session, a joint resolution was tabled by the Leader of the Opposition and Jamiat Ulema Isam-Fazal (JUI-F) parliamentary leader Moulana Wassey.  The resolution strongly condemned the attack.

“The resolution stated that the assembly members are with the relatives in saddest movement who lost their loved one in Mastung,” he said, adding that the incident is creating the clash between the nations who are living in the province and termed it a conspiracy against Balochistan.

The resolution further demanded immediate arrest of the culprits who were responsible for the attack.

Moulana Wassey alleged that the Indian government had invested around Rs230 million in order to destabilise Pakistan and the China-Pakistan Economic corridor.

“The economy depends on peace. If there is peace, economy will be there,” Wassey said.

Chief Minister Balochistan Dr Malik Baloch concluding the debate has said his government will not spare the terrorists and they will be brought to justice at any cost. “The Baloch norms and tradition never allow killing innocent and unarmed people. Baloch people should rise up and deny space to such people in their areas.”

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Reader Comments (36)

  • Khan
    May 30, 2015 - 12:54PM

    It’s time to declare Baloch insurgents as international terrorists if they claim responsibility for this attack as well.Recommend

  • pansheeri
    May 30, 2015 - 1:48PM

    this time it is oppressed who got even or what they think. it is not BLARecommend

  • ahmed wani
    May 30, 2015 - 2:03PM

    pure pakistan zindabad,,,,,,,,,,,,,Recommend

  • Anwar
    May 30, 2015 - 3:11PM

    I think it is a Mossad operation because they have better planning and organization. for this kind of job. Moassd will make it look like a RAW operation. We need to keep our minds open to all possibilities. Recommend

  • ziddi
    May 30, 2015 - 3:13PM

    This is the latest craze among the Pakistan politician to blame RAW.And funny thing is that people believe it.Recommend

  • Raju Indian
    May 30, 2015 - 3:17PM

    Great! the blame game begins..helps the local politicians and hate mongers from being found at fault…sadly this is why we will not see peace anytime soonRecommend

  • max
    May 30, 2015 - 3:34PM

    my Pakistani friends blame us for everything from dowry deaths to electricity crisis but don’t give undeserved credit to RAW. It is most over rated organisation in the worldRecommend

  • Truthprevails
    May 30, 2015 - 3:42PM

    No doubt RAW is behind all this, its efforts to destabilize the country are at peak.
    Only if RAW had put this much efforts towards their slums, their would be no poverty in HINDUstan.Recommend

  • Prada
    May 30, 2015 - 3:58PM

    Pakistan is becoming the laughing stock by crying wolf each time without any truth to the claim.Recommend

  • Pakistani
    May 30, 2015 - 4:19PM

    the bigger question is what we are doing about it? RAW is definitely involved but how far pakistan is willing to go to protect its citizen. cross border drone strikes on terror camps initiated by RAW? if US can cross border to protect its citizen, so can we. if our govt/army has the guts.Recommend

  • Iqbal
    May 30, 2015 - 4:44PM

    So RAW is the new face saving formula to cover up our own inefficiency and incompetence. Even if you took his words at face value, the Indian minister said that he wishes to eliminate terrorists by using terrorists. He did not say that he will attack the innocents. Please do not try to escape accountability by shifting blame on RAW or whoever for everything that happens here.Recommend

  • syed baqar ahsan
    May 30, 2015 - 4:46PM

    Our dis-unity and continuous shia genocide is the bases which has given the birth to this fresh Pushtoon killing.Recommend

  • rama
    May 30, 2015 - 4:48PM

    If India takes action against it is called human right violation, but if Pakistan takes the action those “freedom”fighters then it is legitimate action.
    If the India construct dam in the Kashmir for the development of region, then it is water war, If the Pakistan cooperate with the China without given due share to Baluchistan people, Pakistan will blame India as conspiring against Pakistan state .
    First the attend the missing person issue seriously and give due share to Baluchistan people
    You will not face any challenge to CPECRecommend

  • Mankaran Singh
    May 30, 2015 - 4:52PM

    Well this is getting interesting Pakistani government is unequivocally blaming RAW for everything.Indirectly they are saying behrooni takaton ka haath hae hum se koi umeed na karaien.Recommend

  • Babloo
    May 30, 2015 - 4:54PM

    Government is orchestrating a RAW phobia the consequences of which wont be good.Recommend

  • Prakash
    May 30, 2015 - 4:54PM

    Seems like everybody is reading from a script!Recommend

  • Paranoid Pakis
    May 30, 2015 - 5:05PM

    Won’t be long before people start accusing those from their own family as RAW agents.Recommend

  • SKChadha
    May 30, 2015 - 5:25PM

    Sharif log have started singing ‘RAW RAW re re RAW RAW’ on mourning of innocent civilians.Recommend

  • Haider
    May 30, 2015 - 5:54PM

    We have learnt this from our neighbors…….
    Even if a dog dies in India they said ISI is behind itRecommend

  • Babloo
    May 30, 2015 - 6:05PM

    The minister visited the site of the incident and found some ‘raw’ mangoes. That was irrefutable proof that this was a RAW operation.Recommend

  • Righteous Indian
    May 30, 2015 - 6:15PM

    Hey come on. We all know Raw doesn’t do such things, it’s only ISI. If you guys had done a little bit of research, such as watching a bollywood movie, you would know the truth.Recommend

  • Indian
    May 30, 2015 - 6:27PM

    Do i need to have an indian name for my comments to be posted??Recommend

  • goggi (Lahore)
    May 30, 2015 - 7:12PM

    If my own roof is leaking, I would be a DAMN FOOL to make the rain responsible for my over-flooded and drowned hut!Recommend

  • Ch. Allah Daad
    May 30, 2015 - 7:46PM

    Authorities and media know who are murderers but nobody would tell us the truth. From my past experience I can say that if victims were Punjabis, its job of BLA, if victims were Hazaras, its job of Lashkar Jhangvi or other sectarian organization. As in this incident, victims are mostly Pakhtoons which is something new, therefore we can blame anyone we dislike. Therefore its MQM, hence its RAW. Recommend

  • May 30, 2015 - 8:46PM

    Nobody actually buy this RAW phenomena and if they consider by any chance then there are serious concerns and question on our own capabilities specially when we know our enemy then still we fail to prevent our people.Recommend

  • May 30, 2015 - 9:19PM

    probably shia extremists trained by terrorist regime in Iran, plotted and carried these heinous and barbaric attacks.Recommend

  • May 31, 2015 - 12:00AM

    Indian officials are openly admitted that they remained involved in Bloachistan,and by the way RAMA Sahab! the due share has been given to Balochista but the politicians of the Province are that much corrupt that they don,t want to deliver. Recommend

  • vasan
    May 31, 2015 - 12:02AM

    It looks like just one word is all you need to know to be a police man, judge and politician in Pakistan
    FIR – fill up “RAW” and the dead body count
    Chargesheet – RAW agents
    Judgement – No need to give judgement, Just run off to Dubai
    Politician – Chant the one word mantra “RAW”
    1971 will be repeated at this rate either in Baluchistan or in Sindhu desh or in bothRecommend

  • Naresh
    May 31, 2015 - 2:08AM

    @Pakistani: the bigger question is what we are doing about it? RAW is definitely involved but how far pakistan is willing to go to protect its citizen. cross border drone strikes on terror camps initiated by RAW? if US can cross border to protect its citizen, so can we. if our govt/army has the guts.
    .
    Sir Ji : This will give India Carte Blanche to attack the Pakistani Terrorist Camps in Pakistan as well as in POK.
    CheersRecommend

  • May 31, 2015 - 2:49AM

    It is Pakistani Military/ISI responsible for this attack. India couldn’t care less.Recommend

  • ajeet
    May 31, 2015 - 2:52AM

    Looks like the military operation was a failure and the Pakistani military wants to blame someone and scoot.Recommend

  • May 31, 2015 - 2:52AM

    Aakar Patel, did you do it?Recommend

  • Brar
    May 31, 2015 - 4:55AM

    @Asif: First listen carefully but your ex_president General Musuraff says he openly admitted that we trained Mujahids and used them and he advised General Raheel not to repeat the mistake.Recommend

  • May 31, 2015 - 9:26AM

    Oh my Pakistanis friends listen to carefully you are accusing Indian agency RAW for your own failures in the country, it’s sheer shamelessness as it is your own responsibility to set right the domestic issuesRecommend

  • satender rajput
    May 31, 2015 - 10:02AM

    Blame game if not new in Pakistan.Fatima Jinnah was first person to be accused of being raw agent.Recommend

  • Raghu
    May 31, 2015 - 10:54AM

    If India takes action against it is called human right violation, but if Pakistan takes the action those “freedom”fighters then it is legitimate action.
    If the India construct dam in the Kashmir for the development of region, then it is water war, If the Pakistan cooperate with the China without given due share to Baluchistan people, Pakistan will blame India as conspiring against Pakistan state .
    So RAW is the new face saving formula to cover up our own inefficiency and incompetence. Recommend

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