Thousands of Pashtuns rallied in Lahore demanding basic and equal human rights for the Pashtun citizens of Pakistan. They are all under the Pashtun Tahafuz Movement banner.
Under the umbrella of Pashtun Tahafuz Movement they gathered in Lahore and put forward their demands as minority ethnic citizens. Their leader Manzoor Pashteen is a very dynamic and vocal personality who addressed the rally on Sunday.
The basic claim for these Pashtuns who rallied in Lahore was to end the random disappearances of Pashtun people. They stand against extrajudicial murders of their fellow men and ask for equal rights.
Da sanga azadi da (what kind of freedom is this?)
This is the slogan Pashtun Tahafuz Movement stands for. The leader Manzoor Pashteen belongs from South Waziristan, the birth place of Taliban. He started this movement on a local basis and it has spread like wildfire all over the country now. He managed to arrange a rally which thousands attended even though they faced severe media blackout.
The rally went through even with a government ban.
The government had banned the procession because of certain security concerns for the leaders of Pashtun Tahafuz Movement. The police had even arrested some activists and leaders which were later released under civil society pressure.
“I am eye-witness of the sufferings of the Waziristan. Compare events of Waziristan with Karbala.
Mashraan (local leaders) were assassinated and fake mashraan introduced. Don’t release missing persons, bring them to court! Dual-national generals doubt our nationality. If they (Military forces) can sell 4000 (admitted by commission) persons for dollars they can do much worse.
A student received a chit of warning that “we will see you” with a bullet attached to the chit. The more you suppress us the more we would get tough! Gutter-minded people will release gutter-water and clean-minded people will clean it, just like they (students) did today.
Media you spread lie but now people use facebook, mind it. GHQ need media for their propaganda. Time was not at your side but you courageously turned it to your side. You send bullets but we hold pens. We are peaceful. We will continue our peaceful protest.
They say we salute you people for sacrifices but we don’t need it. Let’s understand it in a story:
“Thief loots a home and the other day watchman tells the home-owner that I salute you for your sacrifice that you let thief loot your house. O watchman! What were you doing?”
I thank all the left and women organizations of Lahore for arranging and participating in Jalsa. God bless you all. Thanks”
Manzoor Pashteen, Chairman Pashtun Tahafuz Movement said in his speech to the rally. We have all heard and read about the PTM but the media have been blacked out. The only way to know was through social media.
Many opinions articles about this have been deleted off of major newspapers.
However, this media black out has not stopped the movement even a bit because there will still thousands of people standing in solidarity with Pashtuns. Making this movement a success and helping Pashtun people should be our top priority as a nation. We all need to develop empathy, respect and support for them. Punjabis and Pashtuns alike need to stand up for this and claim real freedom.
While there has been open and public criticism for the Pakistani Army in the PTM jalsas and rallies. This is not a norm in Pakistan and thus, allegedly, is one of the key reasons why the Pashtuns have been tried to silenced.’
General Qamar Bajwa said that these protests have been ‘engineered’ by foreign forces.
The trend #PashtunLongMarch2Lahore topped Twitter trends list on Sundays. The rally has managed to stir a serious debate and make general public aware of Pashtun problems. Pashtuns face issues that needed to come into the public eye. They have been supported by right and feminist movements and their leaders have shown graitude.