Landed Colonialism: Pakistan Army’s occupation of land in Sindh

In this context, the complex example and the most suitable? subject? of the contemporary studies around federalism is Pakistan. No doubt one of the rare peculiarity of colonisation is land and natural resources along with the other manifestations of human and natural resources as well as territorial / geographical colonialism.
Warring against the citizens

An absolute militarized state and country dominated by ethnic Punjabi Muslims, Pakistan has a history of internal wars that it has been fighting against Sindhi, Baloch, Pashtun and Siraiki people since March 27, 1948. These wars have no full-stop even after seventy-two years after the creation of Pakistan in 1947. Almost all military operations and interventions carried in Sindh, Pakhtunkhuwa and in Siraiki South Punjab as well as invasion of Balochistan and parts of Kashmir had unavoidable deep connections with the land and land related interests.In fact, Pakistan Army is the largest land mafia in Pakistan, and unethically and due to illegitimate use of power, it possesses and keeps on occupying the prime land in Sindh, Balochistan, Pakhtunkhuwa, Siraiki South Punjab and occupied Kashmir.

Eying the land resources of Sindh

Sindh is natural resources rich land in South Asia having one of the oldest sea-ports in the region. Karachi, the capital city of Sindh, is the only cosmopolitan in Pakistan. The military has a history of occupying millions of acres urban and agriculture land; school and hospital buildings; and having shares, contracts and employments in the oil, gas, and coal resources of the province.

Recently it has started occupying the bulky land in Karachi, Hyderabad and Sukkur cities for the mammoth human settlements there in a bid to ethnically cleanse the Sindhi from the cities and re-settle 20 million ethnic Punjabis there. By doing this, the land locked Pakistani Punjab province wants to ensure resisting possible freedom of Sindh.

The military has recently launched the controversial residential and commercial project Bahriya (Naval) Town in Karachi based on over one hundred thousand acres land in and around coastal Karachi. Another series of projects is also being planned in the Malir district of Karachi that also is based on over one hundred thousand acres land.

If the intended settlement of these projects is estimated, at least ten new seats in Sindh Assembly, National Assembly and Senate of Pakistan would be created by the new non-Sindhi settlers.

No end to movement

When Sindhi nationalists announced a movement against land occupation by the armed forces, the military retaliated. Over one hundred activists of various Sindhi nationalist parties were killed and around 2000 were either detained or enforcedly disappeared during August – December 2014. Recently, a civil society movement Pakistan Fisherfolk Forum (PFF) announced launching movement against Malir projects; suddenly his car was crashed accidentally in which PFF leader Tahira Ali Shah was killed and Mohammad Ali Shah got severe injuries.

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