Governor's rule imposed in Balochistan

Last Updated: Mon, Jan 14, 2013 07:50 hrs

Islamabad, Jan 14 (IANS) Governor's rule was imposed in Pakistan's violence-hit Balochistan province early Monday following the Jan 10 twin bomb attacks in Quetta in which 86 people were killed.

Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf announced governor's rule in the province in the wake of deadly bombings. After a meeting with representatives of the victims of the twin blasts that claimed 86 lives, Ashraf promised imposition of governor's rule in Balochistan to angry protesters gathered at the site, Xinhua reported.

Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari signed the imposition of governor's rule into force.

The imposition means that Balochistan Governor Nawab Zulfiqar Magsi will take over the power from the Balochistan Chief Minister Nawab Aslam Raisani and the provincial government will be dismissed.

Under Article 234 of Pakistan's constitution, governor's rule can only be implemented under a state of emergency with a maximum period of two months. In Pakistan, the chief minister of a province is the de facto top leader of the province while the provincial governor is largely a honorary title without actual executive power.

The decision to impose governor's rule in Balochistan is to quench the anger over the killing of the minority Shia Muslims and avoid the escalation of the crisis.

On Jan 10, twin bomb attacks killed 86 people and wounded over 120 others, mostly Shia Muslims. The brutal killing of the innocent people caused massive protests across the country.

Family members of the blast victims launched a sit-in following the attack and refused to bury the bodies.

On Sunday, Ashraf rushed to Quetta to hold talks with the members of the Solidarity Council. After a behind-the-door meeting, he paid a visit to the protesters gathered at the blast site and announced the imposition of governor's rule in the province.

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