Effigy of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi
A Pakistani protester puts a gun on an effigy of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi during a demonstration in Quetta on 18 August 2016 BANARAS KHAN/AFP/Getty Images

Anti-India protests have erupted in Balochistan over a statement made by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 15 August, Pakistani media reported. In his speech on India's Independence Day, Modi said people of Balochistan, Gilgit and Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK) had thanked him for pointing out the atrocities they faced at the hands of Pakistan.

However, political organisations and locals of the region are unhappy with Modi's statement and think India's premier was trying to incite terrorism in the region, media reports say.

In Balochistan's capital city of Quetta, members of the Pakistan Workers Party reportedly marched in protest on Thursday (18 August). Civil society activists and several other political organisations also reportedly took part in the march demanding that the central government take the issue to the international forum.

The demonstrators also set ablaze Indian flags and burnt effigies of Modi. They claimed terrorism in Balochistan is funded by India. "I have the evidence of RAW's involvement in Balochistan, and whatever I say is based on evidence we have. RAW is providing training to the terrorists in Balochistan," Balochistan's chief minister Sanaullah Zehri said and added that Brahamdagh Bugti, the self-exiled head of the banned Baloch Republican Party (BRP), is a deserter.

"By saluting Modi, Brahamdagh has proved that he is a traitor. He saluted the man who is responsible for bloodshed in Balochistan," The Express Tribune quoted Zehri as saying.

Home Minister Sarfaraz Bugti also stood with the demonstrators and said India should think twice before making any statement about Pakistan and its people. "This is Balochistan where the people are patriotic and will go after every terrorist who wants to create problems. This is not Bangladesh," he added, in an apparent reference to India's role in Bangladesh's independence from East Pakistan in 1971.