In less than a month one more death at the hands of Police! At least, this is the claim of the relatives of Arman Loni and the witnesses. However, Senior Superintendent of Police Operations (SSP) maintains that the post-mortem report finds no signs of violence or injuries Arman’s body. What caused the death of Mr Loni will surface soon.

Just like in Sahiwal, the starkly different accounts by different parties are baffling to say the least. What can explain such contradictions? Instead of providing any further clarity, the government has given mixed messages. We are told that Balochistan Chief Minister (CM) Jam Kamal Khan Alyani has already taken notice of the incident and the state has assured us that it will not let the culprits go ‘this time’ - which seems an odd reaction given the police’s claim there were no signs of violence in the post-mortem. Regardless we hope that the state does a through investigation and unearths the complete truth, and that the authorities are not singing us lullabies of pacification.

And if the police account is rejected in the findings, then it would mean that the pieces of advice to the police department in this paper and other national newspapers fell on deaf ears. One after another, government officials and civil society members have pleaded before the state and law enforcement agencies to show restraint while establishing and maintaining law and order in an area.

People are frustrated with the empty promises of the state. The report that the CM wants to be presented before him in forty-eight hours cannot bring Arman Loni back. If the report to the CM Balochistan finds police responsible for the killing of Arman, it will have two-pronged consequences. Firstly, it will widen the lack of trust between the police and the public, and the latter will start fearing the former instead of thinking of the force as protector their lives, properties and liberties. Secondly, PTM supporters will be further hardened against state injustices.

One more time, for the greater common good, it is advised that the state deal with the case honestly and diligently. If the findings blamed the police, the state should not only compensate the victim’s family; it should apologise for its failure in dismantling the sit-in more peacefully. This approach will soothe people’s anger.

If the state shows insensitivity in the handling of the case, it will deepen the perception among PTM workers that the state does not care much while showing aggression against ethnic minorities. Such an impression, if not defused at its earliest, will prove extremely harmful for the political stability of the country.

Last but not least, the recent uptick in civilian killings because of police actions calls for a re-evaluation of the tactics that police use for establishing law and order. What is the need of the hour? Implementation of Amal-Committee Report’s recommendations.