Sindhis demand separate homeland of 'Sindhudesh'; Beleaguered Pak trying to suppress Freedom movements across the country with brute force
The 72 year old demand of a separate country for persecuted Sindhis is gathering steam once again in Pakistan. Large-scale protest organised by Jeay Sindh Qaumi Mahaz (JSQM), a nationalist political party in the Sindh province of Pakistan, where the protesters demanded a separate country called 'Sindhudesh'.
that on November 17th, thousands of Sindhi agitators took to the streets to protest vigorously and demanded a separate homeland. The entire city was painted red with the protesters waiving red flags of “Jiye Sindh Qaumi Mahaz”. The protesters marched from Gulshan-e-Hadeed to the Karachi Press Club by various means of commute demanding a free ‘Sindhudesh’.
Sunan Qureshi, President of "Jiye Sindh Qaumi Mahaz", challenged the Govt of Pakistan and warned against use of force to quell their fight of freedom. The leaders of the party addressed the protesters and demanded their right for freedom. Calling the outsiders a threat to Sindhi language and culture, they said Sindh region is being dominated by outsiders for long. It is an independent nation and is forcefully occupied by Punjabis of Pakistan. They alleged that their land and resources were being exploited and human rights violations are rampant.
Last 6 months have witnessed many big protests and processions by 'Jiye Sindh Qaumi Mahaz' in Sindh. Despite the efforts of the ISI and the army, lakhs of agitators have been participating in each protests. Pakistan is already dealing with increasing number of freedom movements of Balochistan and Pashtunistan. The movement for the independence of Sindhudesh has come across as a big threat to the very existence and future of Pakistan as an single entity.
Demand for 'Sindhudesh'
GM Saeed started Sindh Awami Mahaz and intensified the movement for separate Sindhi homeland
Initiated by "Jiye Sindh Qaumi Mahaz", the Sindhudesh movement has been demanding independence of Sindh since 1947, ever since Pakistan came into existence. With the formation of Pakistan, protests among Sindhi speakers intensified against the forced imposition of Urdu.
Among those who raised the voice of Sindh independence in 1947 was Ghulam Murtaza Shah Saeed, a prominent political leader. He was detained by the Govt of Pakistan in 1948. In 1972, GM Saeed started an organization called Sindh Awami Mahaz, which intensified the movement for Sindhi nationality. Post the death of GM Saeed in 1995, the "Jiye Sindh Qaumi Mahaz" party carried forward the movement. The movement has gradually turned into a big movement in past 25 years.
The Sindhudesh movement has seen an increase in popularity after the death of Benazir Bhutto. Sindhi nationalists say that original inhabitants of Sindh have been deprived of faciltities and recourses but the same has been used to the advantage of people from non-Sindhi ethnic groups who have migrated to Sindh province from other regions of Pakistan, including Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Dominance of Muhajir people in key areas of Sindh including Karachi, domination of Punjabis in the defence sector, increase in Taliban migrants, as well as terrorist attacks in the province have led to the demands of a separate Sindhudesh gather steam.
Anti-CPEC protests in Sindh province
In 2017, the demands for Sindhudesh intensified over CPEC and use of force and torture by Pakistani army against protesting Sindhis. Residents of Sindh province have objected to the China Pakistan Economic Corridor since the beginning. The human rights violations by Pakistani forces to facilitate multi-billion dollar CPEC by brute force had angered entire Sindh. Entire province erupted in slogans of "No China Go China" against Chinese presence in Sindh. Jeay Sindh Muttahida Mahaz (JSMM), a Sindh-based nationalist party, has announced Sindh-wide strikes to protest Against CPEC.
JSMM led a massive rally and protest march starting from the Indus Highway to the tomb of GM Sayed, the 20th century Sindhi scholar and politician who started the Sindhudesh movement. The large-scale protests saw anti-CPEC, anti-extremist and religious terrorism banners and placards, which demanded the independence of Sindh and end to CPEC.
The China Pakistan economic corridor passes through the Gilgit-Baltistan region, which is a defacto part of the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir, the Balochistan region, which wants freedom from Pakistan and now the Sindh region in which the people are demanding for separate 'Sindhudesh'.