KARACHI – SINDH: Rrenowned Sindhi nationalist leader, chairman Jeay Sindh Qaumi Mahaz (JSQM) Bashir Kahn Qureshi has died on late Friday night. He was 54.
Qureshi was on his way to a small village Dari Magsi in Sakrand, district Benazirabad (Nawabshah) at the time.
Urdu television channels reported quoting initial reports that he died of fatal cardiac arrest, but despite several attempts the cause of the death was not confirmed.
Qureshi was a brave leader and spent all his life spreading the message of Great Leader Saeen G. M. Syed throughout Sindh and also struggling for Independent Sindhudesh.
In his last mammoth rally of an estimation of 0.7 million people chanting slogans of “Na Khapae na khapae, Pakistan Na Khapae” (We don’t want Pakistan) on M.A Jinnah Road of provincial capital city of Karachi-Sindh, he demanded international powers to help Sindhis to get their independent country—the Sindhudesh.
Political analysts are of the view that Qureshi’s death is great loose of nationalists who wants their independent country, the Sindhudesh.
JSQM in a statement issued has announced that the body of their beloved leader would be brought to his hometown where he will be laid to rest.
Bashir Ahmed Qureshi was born on 10 August 1959 at Motan Pur Mohalla in Ratodero, Larkano District in Sindh. He took active part into students’ politics. He joined in Jeay Sindh Students Federation (JSSF) in the year 1976 and was elected as JSSF president Tando Jam Unit in the year 1980 and after two years (1982) was elected as Central Vice President of the Federation.
He was also elected as Central President of the Federation in the year 1986. In 1990, he was re-elected for the same post. Nevertheless, in the year 1995, Jeay Sindh Quami Mahaz was formed when he was behind the bar but was elected as Deputy Convener. He was also elected as Secretary General of the Mahaz in 1996 and finally elected as Chairman in the year 1998.
Bashir Khan Qureshi has played a very active role in politics of Sindh. Tando Jam police put him behind the bars for the first time in 1978.
The Thori Phattak incident (Aug 17, 1984) was a turning point in his life when five activists of the Jeay Sindh Students Federation were shot dead by the security forces at Thori Phatak, near Manjhand, district Jamshoro, on October 17, 1984, when they were on their way to Larkano, for protesting against Pakistan army’s role in politics.
This happened during the regime of military dictator General Zialul Haq at Thori Phatak whereas large numbers of Sindhi students were arrested. Bashir played a vital role in mobilizing the members of the Federation and worked hard to strengthen the Federation. Bashir also took active part in the movement against Martial Law. Later, he was arrested on Jan 15, 1985 at Rato Dero. Torture at various Police Stations, prisons and denial of basic facilities as mentioned in the Jail Manual, was not new things for him. He was kept in “Closed Ward” (generally known as ‘Band Ward’) in Hyderabad Prison for long time.
The Military Court awarded him one-year imprisonment in each two cases along with 10 lashes, which were implemented. Finally, he was set free in August 1986. Bashir was again arrested on August 11, 1988 after Sindhi-Mohajar riots.
This time, he was jailed for 18 months. Again, he was arrested on Jan 02, 1994 (PPP regime) for two years. Later he was arrested on Jan 17, 1999 on his way to attend the birth celebration of Saeen G. M. Syed and was set free in November 1999 after a struggle of 11 months. Bashir has remained in prison for the total period of 6 years and 10 months. He has spent best days of his life in prison.
He is author of his book entitled “Jaagya Junge Jawaan” in Sindhi language, published in 1989, which is collection of various speeches delivered by him. Bashir was awarded “G. M. Syed National Award” in the year 1997.