Silencing Balochistan

Banned LUMS talkIt’s not often that an academic discussion becomes national news, but this is the case with a talk on Balochistan planned to take place at LUMS. Actually, the talk would have come and gone with little attention at all except that the organisers were forced to cancel it, allegedly under direct order of ISI.

Talking to Pakistan Today, LUMS faculty member Dr Taimur Rehman said, “A delegation from the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) visited LUMS in the evening and presented a letter calling for cancellation of the talks. They said that Balochistan is a sensitive issue and that the moot could be used to malign Pakistan,” said Dr Rehman, adding that the intelligence officials were firm in their directive.

The decision to ban the discussion began to receive criticism on social media, only to be quickly responded by dozens of posts supporting the decision. Interestingly, many of the posts supporting the decision appear to be coming from new accounts with almost no followers posting exactly the same thing over and over again. Continue reading