July 28th, 2021
By Hamid Riaz & Hassan Raza
It is the third consecutive day since Seengar Noonari, the Sindh Chapter worker and former elected local government councilor of the Awami Workers’ Party (AWP) disappeared from his home in Naseerabad, Sindh. Party colleagues and family members told Voicepk.net that they had tried to approach the relevant police station multiple times but the personnel refused to register the first information report (FIR).
“Members of the AWP’s Sindh Chapter and several members of Seengar’s family and community have approached the concerned Tehsil Naseerabad police station, but the police have claimed to have no knowledge about Seengar’s whereabouts, and they have informally conceded to us that these matters involving the country’s “sensitive agencies” are beyond the scope of local police officials and that they will not lodge an FIR of the incident,” reveals Bakhshal Thello, President of AWP Sindh.
Bakhshal added that the party and the family would not only approach the courts but also hold protests to ensure the release of their comrade.
Noonari was abducted late at night on June 26 while he was busy mobilizing for the AWP’s planned day of action against land-grabbing by the Bahria Town Housing Society in Malir.
“We were asleep at our homes that night when at about 3 AM, all of a sudden, we were woken up by a ruckus. We went out into the courtyard and saw several people dressed in uniform and some in civil clothes had trespassed into our home. Before we could make sense of things, they held my children, Seengar’s brother and I at gunpoint and asked Seengar to go to another room,” explains Fauzia, Seengar’s wife.
Fauzia has been married to Seengar for the past 12 years and have three sons, aged 10, seven, and one, together. In addition to Fauzia, her children and Seengar’s brother, two domestic employees were also present inside the house at the time of the incident. Fauzia relates that the intruders had threatened the occupants of the house with modern weapons.
“We had not recovered from the shock of these armed men climbing into our house when we heard another bang: our door was smashed into two pieces and dozens of law enforcement personnel including police, rangers, and plainclothesmen stormed in. They started trashing our house, tossing away our clothes, my husband’s books, and even my children’s toys before dragging Seengar away.”
Fauzia, who calls her husband ‘comrade’, says she will stand firm with her party colleagues in agitating for the return of her husband. She has also been at the forefront of protests by citizens of Naseerabad in solidarity with Seengar, which have been ongoing for the last three days.
Even though there is no concrete proof that Seengar’s abduction is somehow linked to the recent citizens’ uprising against Bahria Town and the state’s “consequent repression”, the fact that he was abducted while preparing for an anti-Bahria Town protest lends more proof to the claim that the incident was the result of Seengar’s anti-Bahria Town activism.
“It is clear that his abduction was an attempt to sabotage the protest. The protest on June 27 went ahead as planned. During our country-wide protest, our workers demanded the release of Seengar as well as other political workers [abducted for their anti-Bahria Town activism],” explains Bakshal Thello.
In addition to his recent activism, Seengar was a veteran activist working for the rights of several oppressed segments of society.
“He had spent his life fighting for the rights of indigenous communities, the peasantry, rice mills workers, students, and youth as well as other working classes. After his abduction, his community and the city came out to demand his release… that is how loved by the people Seengar is,” states Ammar Rashid, President of the AWP Punjab.
Meanwhile, nine protestors from different political groups were placed on the fourth schedule their names include Raiz Ali Chandio S/O Rasool Bux Chandio R/O Schal Goth Karachi, Jeay Sindh Mahaz (SRA), Nawaz Ali Shah S/o Murad Ali Shah Jeay Sindh Mahaz (SRA) R/O ghora Bari district Thatta,Ghulam Nabi Keti S/O Muhammad Umer Keti Jeay Sindh Mahaz (SRA) R/O Ghora Bari district Thatta, Azizullah S/o Imam Bux Bhutto Jeay Sindh Mahaz (SRA) Jaloos Bazar Larkana, Ayaz Ali S/o Wadal Khan (JSM Riaz Chandio Group r/o Village Qasim Bhan District Jamshoro, z Ali Brohi S/o Muhammad Hassan Brohi village Khameso goth New Karachi; Akhtar Hussain Asadullah S/o Koro Khan Soomro Jeay Sindh Mahaz R/o village Gohar Shah, Taluka Ghorabari, district Thatta, Abdul Ghaffar S/o Muhammad Urs Jeay Sindh Mahaz (SRA) R/O Qamba and Abid Hussain Memon S/o Alim Haider Jeay Sindh Mahaz (SRA) R/o Paro Shaikh Shikarpur.