Recently, several videos have been posted on social media showing Hazara people being displaced by militias in some districts of Daykundi. The province is a Hazara-dominated region in the very center of Afghanistan. In the videos, locals claim that individuals affiliated with local Taliban officials in Daykundi are trying to seize their lands and personal property.
One of these videos shows residents of the villages of Nawabad and Balasar-e Tagabdar in the Gizab region of Daykundi province protesting. Gizab used to be one of the administrative units of Uruzgan province. The Taliban have recently annexed it with Pato district of Daykundi province. According to the elders in these villages, about 300 families have recently received a “warning” from people named “Jomhur Khan” and “Zahir Khan Temuri” to leave their lands and move to any other place within nine days. According to villagers, Jomhur Khan, who has claimed Hazara lands in the villages, is currently working as the Taliban’s deputy governor for Daykundi province.
Residents of the villages of Nawabad and Balasar-e Tagabdar say they have lived in these regions for more than forty years and so far, no one has claimed ownership of their land and property. But recently, after the Taliban take control of Afghanistan, some Pashtun tribesmen, with the support of a number of local Taliban, have claimed that these lands are their property. They emphasize that Jomhur Khan, the Taliban’s deputy governor for Daykundi province, has given Hazaras nine days to leave their lands and move to other areas.
The people of these villages have called for an impartial delegation from the Taliban to closely investigate the incident. According to locals, they should be treated fairly and the Daykundi local government should resolve this issue legally and properly.
According to the residents, they have been told to evacuate their homes and move to other areas within nine days. Otherwise, they do not have the right to sue if any oppression takes place against them. They claim to receive repeated warnings and are told to leave their lands and have not hope for grievance redressal. Locals also emphasize that they have lived in these areas for the past 40 years and have not usurped anyone’s land or property – they don’t know why they should suddenly be forced to do so. They call on the Taliban government to bring justice and address this issue as soon as possible.
Meanwhile, local Taliban officials in Daykundi province say they are launching an investigation. “If such a problem is proven,” they add. “It will be addressed promptly.”
Siddiq Ullah Abed, the Taliban’s police chief in Daykundi, told 8 Subh that the news might not be true and that it was an “enemy propaganda”.
“If anyone or a group uses the name of the Taliban to do so, it will not be allowed by the Taliban,” he said.
According to him, no one has the right to seize people’s property by force and coerce them to emigrate. He also called on the people to act through the local administration if they have been “oppressed” so that their petitions can be processed.
The Taliban police chief in Daykundi states that he was not aware of the incident so far and that no one had approached the local authority for investigation. The Taliban police chief for Daykundi province, while unaware of the issue, said an investigation would be launched soon. He also emphasized that the truth and falsity of this news would be shared with the media.
On the other hand, a source who spoke to the reporter only on condition of anonymity, told 8 Subh that in some parts of Pato district, which has recently been merged by Gizab of Uruzgan, Kochis (Pashtun nomads) are also trying to occupy the Hazara lands. According to the source, so far, many Hazara families have been forced to leave their property and Pashtun nomads have settled on their lands. The source cites the Khalaj village of Pato district as an example, where Pashtun tribesmen have forcibly evicted local Hazaras and seized their lands.