The Pakistani government has sped up the process of obtaining Interpol’s red warrants against self-exiled Baloch separatist leader Brahamdagh Bugti, who currently resides in Switzerland, reports local daily The Express Tribune.
But chances of his return seem dim, say experts, as there are fears that he will not be afforded a fair trial, if extradited.
The Balochistan province's police department has contacted the interior ministry for acquiring the required identification documents of Brahamdagh to complete the “Red Notice” application requirements for Interpol. After the completion of the required paperwork, Pakistan would formally contact Interpol for issuing a Red Notice against Brahamdagh for his extradition to Pakistan.
He is the grandson of former Balochistan chief minister Akbar Bugti, who was killed in 2006 during a controversial military operation in Kohlu.
"My understanding is that the move by Pakistan comes in response to the references on Balochistan made by the Indian Prime Minister," analyst Akbar Zaidi said. According to preliminary identification details submitted by the Balochistan police, the 33-year-old chief of the banned Baloch Republican Party (BRP) is known in his close circles as “Sahib”.
Brahamdagh had appreciated Narendra Modi’s recent remarks on Balochistan that Islamabad had officially denounced, terming it an “intervention in Pakistan’s internal affairs”. This statement by Brahamdagh have angered the Pakistani Army, which is conducting an unannounced operation against separatist militants in the province. Prior to this, the army had been on talks with Bugti over a possible peace agreement.
The Balochistan government has been tasked with completing the requirements for the Red Notice application for its submission to Interpol. According to the Balochistan police, Brahamdagh has two wives named Laila Bibi and Shuli Bibim and four children. He hails from the Raheja Bugti tribe and is operating the Baloch Republican Army network from Switzerland.
He fled to Afghanistan during the operation and moved to Switzerland when Pakistan asked Kabul to hand him over in 2010. In Switzerland, he sought political asylum in 2011, but his request was turned down in January 2016, citing Islamabad’s decision of declaring him a terrorist wanted for multiple attacks. A federal police official told the paper that the Balochistan home department is expected to officially request within a month the federal interior ministry to move the request for Interpol red warrants,” a FIA official said.
He said a provincial court had already declared Brahamdagh a proclaimed offender while issuing his arrest warrants. “Pakistan has solid legal grounds and supporting evidence to seek his arrest through Interpol,” the official added.
But local legal experts disagree with this assertion. Five separate cases under sections 120, 121, 123, and 353 of Pakistan Penal Code have been registered against Baloch separatist leaders, including Brahamdagh, Harbiyar Marri and Banyuk Karima Baloch, for allegedly supporting Modi’s statements.
Cases were registered under the charges of “concealing design to commit offence punishable with imprisonment”, “waging or attempting to wage war or abetting waging of war against Pakistan”, “concealing with intent to facilitate design to wage war”, and “assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of his duty”.