Early Activism and Protest in 2013
Abdul Qadeer Baloch, widely known as Mama Qadeer, is a prominent human rights activist originating from the Balochistan province of Pakistan. In 2013, Mama Qadeer led a remarkable protest, covering over 2,000 kilometers from Balochistan to Islamabad. The demonstration aimed to draw attention to the pervasive issue of Baloch missing persons. Tragically, Qadeer’s own son, Jaleel Reki Baloch, had been found dead in 2012, intensifying his commitment to the cause.
Travel Restrictions in 2015
In March 2015, Mama Qadeer faced governmental intervention when he was prevented from leaving the country at Karachi Airport. His intended destination was New York City, where he planned to participate in a human rights conference addressing the struggles of the Baloch people and the ongoing issue of missing Baloch persons.
Academic Censorship in 2015
On April 9, 2015, Mama Qadeer was scheduled to deliver a talk titled “Unsilencing Balochistan” at an event hosted by the Lahore University of Management Sciences. The administration abruptly canceled the event, citing government orders. This move sparked protests from students and faculty, condemning what they perceived as academic censorship. A subsequent event, ‘Unsilencing Balochistan Take 2,’ was organized at T2F Karachi to continue the conversation.
International Visits and Advocacy
In September 2015, Mama Qadeer was finally permitted to leave Pakistan, subsequently visiting India in 2018. During an interview with an Indian news channel, News 18, Mama Qadeer made a plea to the Indian government, requesting weapons to confront their adversaries, illustrating the intensity and desperation of his advocacy efforts.
Mama Qadeer’s life is marked by a relentless pursuit of justice and human rights for the Baloch people, with his activism spanning international borders and highlighting the struggles and challenges faced by the Baloch community.