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Hostile reception awaits Musharraf

This will be President Musharraf's first visit to the strife-torn region since the killing of Baloch nationalist leader Nawab Akbar Khan Bugti.

india Updated: Dec 16, 2006 18:42 IST

The people of Balochistan have made preparations for a hostile reception for President General Pervez Musharraf, his first visit to the strife-torn province since the killing of Baloch nationalist leader Nawab Akbar Khan Bugti.

The Balochistan National Party, National Party, Jamhoori Watan Party, Pashtoonkhawa Milli Awami Party, Jamaat-e-Islami, Baloch Students Organisation and Anjuman-e-Tajran Balochistan have called a complete shutter down strike in protest against the visit.

The parties have planned to stage demonstrations in front of press clubs across the province against Musharraf's visit, reports the Daily Times.

Elsewhere the provincial government has made strict security arrangements and declared a public holiday for all schools on the day.

It may be noted that Musharraf's visit to the remote town of Kolhu in Balochistan last year was the genesis of the violent clashes between the federal government and the Baloch people.

The federal government initiated a massive crackdown in retaliation to eight rocket strikes in Kohlu during Musharraf's visit.

Islamabad was accused of using helicopter gunships and heavy artillery to suppress the insurgency as well as bombarding Fort Bugti, the residence of Nawab Bugti, forcing the octogenarian leader to take refuge in the mountains.

Later in August this year, Nawab Bugti was killed in a Pakistani military operation in Dera Bugti, which led to violent protests in Balochistan and elsewhere in the country.

First Published: Dec 16, 2006 18:42 IST