If the claims of Financial Times turn true that China is in negotiations with Baloch separatists to protect its multi-billion projects, it is a matter of concern on many levels.
First, that China was allowed to hold talks with Baloch separatists but efforts of civilian governments since 2008 to do so were obstructed in one way or other needs a public clarification. Many political parties have claimed on many occasions that establishment was the main hurdle in the way of civilian efforts to bring the disenfranchised Baloch militants in national ambit.
Second, safe to assume it is that the establishment kept the parliament in the dark all these years on the matter of utmost national importance. This, in turn, violated the parliament’s supremacy. If decisions of national importance come to public knowledge through leaks despite the fact that the country is enjoying the democratic setup, then there is no difference between a dictatorship and democracy.
Third, the move of interfering in domestic affairs of other countries goes against the fundamental pillar of China’s foreign policy. However, being a realist state, China has compromised on the principle of non-interference to protect its infrastructural projects against Baloch militants’ attacks.
While for the sake of argument one may accept that giving Chinese a chance to negotiate with Baloch militants was necessary given that Baloch fighters are reluctant to hold talks with the government of Pakistan. Having said this much, it is fine as long as China can bring the disgruntled Baloch populations back in national ambit. However, the government needs to remain vigilant. In the past, our blind trust on American aid to solve all our crises did not help at all. The present chaos in Pakistan can be seen as a result of allowing clean chit to America in the past to protect its interests in the region. It is time to learn from our mistakes and vow not to repeat them again.