Ahmed (1992) in his book “Balochistan: Its Strategic Importance” has laid stress on the vitally important geo- strategic position of Balochistan. He argues that Balochistan being located on Arabian Sea has been remained a army base for many external armies. For instance, from Alexander to Muhammad Bin Qasim, from Britian to Russain, it has been used as a buffer state by many major players to counter its arch-rivals. Moreover, Britian and USA took advantage of this region to oppose Red Army of Russia from reaching its access to Indian Ocean and Persian Gulf. But, the major turnaround in its strategic importance at world level occured when Russian invaded Afghanistan.
Besides, Afghanstan is a country surrounded by mountains and it impelled USA to use this way for NATO-supplies. He also highlighted the imperative role of its natural resources and the contribution of imperialist power and its real stake holders. The Author further categorized the unsettled suffering by the people of Balochistan and the deteriorated center-province relations by portraying several points such as the demand for Provincial Autonomy, requirement for equal representation in policy making, equal distribution of resources and the filling of gap in unequal representation in the Army and Bureaucracy.
The writer enunciated that keeping in view the heterogenous societal structure of Balochistan and these unsettled disputes, it provides enough space for external forces to intendedly exploit the region against Pakistan for its own vested interest. On the whole, he throughs light on the question of Balochistan becoming part of a power game due its imperative geographical position.According to Khan (2005), Balochistan is the largest area wise province of Pakistan whereas its the smallest demographically. Balochistan being the lowest populated province has the largest number of uneducated and unemployed people. Furthermore, around 80% population of this province are devoid of clean water and 47% of people are unable to make both ends meet.
He argues that the federal government is involved in initiating mega projects directly without conerning the provinical government. For instance, saindak coal and copper project is a perfect epitome of this nature in which Chines Firm gives 50% profit back to Pakistan and initially Balochistan was given only 20% out of this 50% and now provincial capital gets 30%. On the contrary, the provincial government had also left no stone unturned in furthering the already underpriviliged coniditon of the local people. It has to be noted that the social indicators of this region are far more vulnerable than that of the miserable countries of Africa such as Nigeria, Sudan and Somalia. Its extremley alarming that merely 20% of population have access to electricity and the deteriorated condition of health sector further adds fuel to the fire.
For example, diseases such as tuberculosos, malaria and child mortality is a daily phenomenon. Infrastructure and development in mineral-rich province also draws a grim. Moreover, It was the period of 1952 when gas was founded in this province and distributed 83% of total gas to rest of Pakistan but sadly the provincial capital Quetta and other four districts of the province hardly had the gas supplies in 1980s. Additionally, the writer emphasizes that the army and establishments are not providding a level playing field for the domestic representatives of the people to raise their voice against their exploitation and demand for their fundamental constitutional rights. Hence, the only wayforward for this quagmire is a political settlement, dialogue and true representation of the people without any pressure is the need of the hour (Khan, 2005). Ali (2005) proposed a three-point plan to counter the problems of Balochistan. He asserted that to handle the grievances of Balochistan there must an equal distribution of resources among the provinces, a just and suffice economic and social system to be introduced and lastly the province should be granted provincial autonomy.
He indicates that these same points are incorporated in the manifesto of each political party but what it lacks is practical approach. Furhtermore, the three consititutions of the country indicates that there is war of power between centre and province and where centre always win and provinces are left under the purview of center. He states that an inclusive political approach is the panacea to the problem. In addition, there exists a blatant contradiction and injust in the distribution of resources among provinces.
For instance, all the mineral and natural resources are proclaimed by the state whereas when it comes to its distribution then its done on the basis of demograpical means. He insists on that the only wayout towards a progressive and developed Balochistan is that it be given its true representation without intrusion or no squabble between military and civilian government. Therefore, people ought to be given their rights to raise their voices in a well-democratic way (Ali, 2005).