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Showing posts from December 7, 2019

A Baloch library

Zubeida MustafaDecember 06, 2019Zubeida MustafaUNTIL recently a college textbook in Punjab described the Baloch as “uncivilised people who engaged in murder and looting”. This criminal aberration came to light three years ago when a senator from Balochistan discovered it and raised a hue and cry about it in the upper house of parliament.I am not sure if this figment of a sick and prejudiced imagination has since been rectified. It is surprising that the author failed to appreciate the significant scholarship a small community of seven million with a low literacy rate has managed to produce.No wonder, Baloch activists complain of their cultural identity and language being demonised and their intellectuals being killed. This has historically been the way of invading barbarians who feared knowledge and attempted to destroy it.For me, a visit to the Sayad Hashmi Reference Library in Malir, Karachi, was an inspiring experience. Named after an erudite scholar, Sayad Zahoor Shah Hashmi (1926…