By Nizam Rahim

Joining the Oman Royal Army is a dream for the youth of Makran, which not only provides them attractive incentives but also has an impact on the economy of Makran, as thousands of Baloch people have either served or are serving there.

Gwadar: Candidates are taking part in the physical test for recruitment in Oman Army. Photo by author
Recently the process of recruitment has met several delays, causing alarm amongst the aspiring cadets and their parents.
Zaib Baloch, who was earlier an employee in a public sector department, is one of the recruits, amongst 4000 aspirants from his district Panjgur, who was selected for the Oman Army.

Expressing his concern over the extraordinary delay in his departure for Oman he told Pak Voices, “First, I left my job as according to rules one cannot join Oman Army by not abandoning job in Pakistan.”
“We were called in Karachi for departure to Oman, but at the last moment, we were informed that it was postponed due to some NOC issue between Pakistani and Oman governments, which was later settled and NOC was given.”
He added,  “Since then, we are just being given dates from Omani authorities and these two years had been proven traumatic for the recruits as well as parents. We are not sure about our future, we had to quit our jobs and now it is not easy to get a job in prevailing circumstances.”
Recruitment of youth from Makran is a result of a treaty between Pakistan and Oman during the purchase of Gwadar on 8th September 1958. According to the treaty, the Oman Royal Army was given permission to recruit people from Makran.
Turbat: Oman Army recruits are holding a press conference to protest against the delay in hiring.

Another recruit Meher Baloch told PakVoices, “We have no valid information on the fate of new recruitments. Rumors are being spread by different social media pages but yet we have not got authentic information from Oman authorities.”

He pleaded, “I request them to hammer out a solution so that we could get rid of this corrosive situation”.
“The career of our children are at stake. So, I want to convey my appeal to the responsible authorities to please solve this issue”, father of Zaib told Pak Voices.
According to Salim Baloch, a social activist, it is a serious issue that must be addressed as soon as possible.
“In Panjgur, the selection of these youth has spread a ray of hope and this hope should not be snatched in this manner. Unless the official authorities from Oman issue a final response, these recruits would continue to be mentally tortured,” he said.

About Author: Nizam Baloch is a citizen journalist based in Punjgur, reporting for PakVoices.

Edited by: Aneela Riazuddin