India is determined to keep the heat on Pakistan on the Balochistan issue in all possible ways.
Four decades after it started a Baluchi language service, public broadcaster All India Radio (AIR) is aiming to widen its reach by launching an app and an interactive website to reach the people who speak this language across the world.
The move comes days after New Delhi for the first time took up the issue at the United Nations Human Rights Council as India and Pakistan continue their war of words.
The website and the app being launched on Friday are an attempt to connect with Baluchi speaking diaspora. The initiative is in line with India’s concerted effort to focus attention on human rights violations in Balochistan.
In retaliation to Pakistan’s interference in Jammu and Kashmir, India has announced it would raise the issue of human rights violations in Balochistan at various international fora. New Delhi also said it would keep at it so long as the human rights violations and repressions continue in Baluchistan.
“Till the time Balochistan faces repression, and human rights violations continue there, India will raise this issue,” MEA spokesperson Vikas Swarup said.
Sources in the information and broadcasting ministry said the app and the website will strengthen the radio service, which includes news, views and general entertainment programmes run by the external services division of AIR.
“The existing service, which started in May 1974, was available only to Baluchi speaking listeners in India, but the app and the website will allow audiences across the globe to access content put out by the Indian broadcaster,” a source said.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi made a reference to the struggle of the Baloch people in his Independence Day speech,
It was for the first time Balochistan which has been restive for a long time was mentioned by an Indian Prime Minister during his Independence speech. Since then, New Delhi has consistently been trying raise the Balochsiatn issue, which Pakistan says proves its charge that India is meddling in its internal affairs.
“This is a country (Pakistan), which has systematically abused and violated the human rights of its own citizens, including in Balochistan,” Ajit Kumar, India’s ambassador and permanent representative to the UN, said on September 14.
The Balochistan province, which borders Afghanistan and Iran has been demanding independence for decades.