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Long March for Education

By: Sahila Baloch

According to Aristotle, education is the process of training man to fulfill his aims by exercising all the facilities to the fullest extent as a member of society.

In every era of world, education has been fundamental right of humans to gain, but in Pakistan even in 21th century still Baloch are fighting for gaining their fundamental necessity [education].

Admissibly, Bahauddin Zakariya University Multan issued a notification, where they have decided not to give any more scholarships to Balochistan’s students on the pretext of financial issues. So for this purpose the Baloch Students Council protested in front of BZU’s main gate for restoration of Scholarships.

Majorly, there have been two demands by students: first, scholarships to be restored on the reserved seats for Balochistan’s students in BZU Multan. Second, scholarships to be issued on reserved seats for students of Dera Ghazi Khan and Rajan Pur’s tribal areas in BZU Multan and increase their number by allocating seats in each department of the varsity.

After the completion of 40 days of protest camp in front of BZU Multan, the issue got least attention from the governments [Government of Balochistan, Government of Punjab and the Federal Government. Sadly, the issue did not get to the eyes of central medias, as usual. Consequently, Baloch students announced to start a long March from Multan to Islamabad through Lahore route for resolution of Scholarships on reserved seats of Balochistan in BZU and other universities of Punjab.

This is not the first time that such barriers have been thrown on the ways of Baloch students to getting quality education. Even in past, many such cases happened. The biggest instance is of the recent harassment scandal of University of Balochistan by professors and teachers in 2019. Whereas, poison was mixed in food of girls hostel in Sardar Bahadur Khan Women University. In Punjab University the Baloch students have been beaten several times by different groups. This is simply a conspiracy to snatch education from Baloch students and make them miserable and compel to leave the education.

For the support of BZU Multan’s students, a protest was recorded in front of Karachi Press Club. Baloch students along with the cooperation of other students held a one-day hunger strike camp in front of the Press Club Lahore, too.

But the governments are still in slumber_ particularly Government of Balochistan. They have not been standing by their youths who are to shape a generation for Balochistan. This is to tell you [our representatives], your silence elaborates your guilt in keeping Baloch youths away from education.

The protesting students are out on the roads not for themselves but for the future of incoming students. So, it is our responsibility, too, to support them in every possible mean. Because tomorrow our brothers, sisters, children and youths go for higher education. We need to stand by our youths, even if the government does not.

Published in The Balochistan Point on October 22, 2020

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