‘We need your help’: Baloch chief minister’s plea to leaders in exile

Chief Minister of Balochistan, Mir Abdul Quddus Bizenjo. (APP)
Updated 06 April 2018

‘We need your help’: Baloch chief minister’s plea to leaders in exile

QUETTA: Disaffected Baloch leaders living abroad have been urged to return to Pakistan and play their role in the development of the province.
In an exclusive interview, Mir Abdul Quddus Bizenjo, chief minister of Balochistan province, told Arab News that he will make a “well-planned call to the disgruntled leaders” seeking their return.
Balochistan, in southwestern Pakistan, has faced a wave of violence from armed Baloch separatist groups in the past decade. The province is growing in strategic importance because of the $62 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor.
With Khan of Kalat, Mir Suleman Dawood Jan, as a central figure, Balochistan’s self-exiled leaders include Brahamdagh Bugti, son of late Nawab Akbar Khan Bugti and head of the Balochistan Republican Party (BRP); Javed Mengal, son of Sardar Attaullah Mengal and head of Lashkar-e-Balochistan; and Mehran Marri, son of Khair Bux Marri and leader of the Baloch Liberation Army (BLA).
Dr. Allah Nazr, the most active of the separatists and head of Balochistan Liberation Front (BLF), operates from a hidden location in the province.
Saeed Sarbazi, a host at the Baloch VSH News channel, said the province’s natural resources of gold, copper, oil, coal, natural gas were worth billions. 
“The disgruntled leaders believe that these resources have been usurped by the center and hardly anything is given to the province that produces them,” he said.
The grievances are not confined to resources. “Balochistan has been deprived of basic infrastructure, gas, electricity, health and education. The people of Balochistan have to go to Karachi for treatment,” Sarbazi said.
Bizenjo’s predecessors made similar offers of talks, but the incumbent chief minister said his were “well-planned” and offered after “proper homework.” 
“All of them (former chief ministers of Balochistan) had met the separatist leaders in their personal capacity and no one from the government had approached them with proper planning,” he said.
“Many people have surrendered and joined the national mainstream. A lot of homework has been done. Most of the Baloch leadership abroad have never been part of violence, while those having cases against them will have to face the court.
“The people of Balochistan want to remain with Pakistan. They want to fight for their rights within the constitutional limits of Pakistan. We are not for taking up arms and causing damage to the entire Baloch nation,” he said.
“In this fight (by separatists), many young Baloch men have been lost, our economy has been shattered, our education destroyed. Balochistan cannot bear terrorism anymore,” Bizenjo said.
“This was the reason for extending the call (for dialogue) to the people to come and not only raise their voice for the rights of Balochistan but also play their role in the development of the province.”
Bizenjo revealed that he had already met with the self-exiled Baloch leader, the Khan of Kalat Mir Suleman Dawood Jan, who will have central role in any initiative.
“I have met him. He is our elder. We talked on these issues. We now want him to come home and we are striving for it.
 “Khan of Kalat has never resorted to violence. He is our elder. We want him to come back,” Bizenjo said.


10-year-old Bangladeshi’s communication app creates buzz

Updated 20 January 2020

10-year-old Bangladeshi’s communication app creates buzz

  • “I thought we should have something of our own, which inspired me to start working on my communication app”: Ayman Al-Anam

DHAKA: A Bangladeshi fifth-grader’s new communication app — Lita Free Video Calls and Chat — has created a huge buzz among local internet users. Already, 10,500 people have downloaded the app from the Google Play Store since Saturday.

Ayman Al-Anam submitted the app to Google on Dec. 27. After scrutiny and manual verification, Google uploaded the app on its Play Store on Dec. 31.

 “Currently, Bangladeshi internet users are mostly dependent on apps like WhatsApp, Viber and Imo for communication overseas,” Al-Anam told Arab News.

“I thought we should have something of our own, which inspired me to start working on my communication app.”

It took the 10-year-old 10 months to create the app, which he said he accomplished by himself, without the help of any mentor. “I learned the process through different YouTube tutorials. The rest was just trial and error,” he added.

 The app provides better-quality, high-definition video calls to its users. It also works for transferring big data in a shorter amount of time compared to similar apps.

Al-Anam’s success at such an early age has surprised his parents. “From a very early age, my son had a knack for technology, and I encouraged him to pursue it. He used to spend his free time in front of computers, smartphones and other devices,” said proud father Tauhedush Salam Nishad. “I always supported him, but I never dreamed that he’d see this sort of success so young.”

Recalling the first successful test run of the new app, Nishad said: “One night, I returned home from work and Ayman took my smartphone and installed the raw file of the app. Later, he did the same with his mother’s phone and connected the two devices with a video call. It was the best moment in his life. He shouted with joy, ‘I did it!’” 

Al-Anam named the app after his mother Lita. The young inventor is currently studying at South Point School and College in Chattogram, 248 km from the capital. He dreams of becoming a software engineer and wants to work at Google headquarters.

His creation has drawn much attention from local experts. “We should nurture this sort of extraordinary talent very carefully,” Prof. Mohammad Kaikobad of the Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology told Arab News.

 “This new generation will lead the technology world of tomorrow if they’re guided and encouraged properly.”