Time and again, miscreants have tried to destabilize Pakistan’s security and stability due to which our country has paid a huge cost. Violent extremism, be it religious or nationalist, is not the problem of one area or a province but it exists in pockets. Our province of Balochistan which has been making headlines because of its abundant unexplored natural resources has been recurrently hit by this phenomenon. Few incidents in the recent past compel us to ponder as to why the insurgents try to destabilize this province whenever they get a chance and how the peace loving Baloch youth should be taken on board and engaged in productive activities, which in return can benefit this land of prospects. It is worrisome that for the past few months, some banned outfits are using females in order to achieve their malicious agendas. The first incident of using female as a suicide bomber was reported in year 2022, when the Chinese nationals were killed in Karachi in a suicide attack carried out by a Baloch lady. The responsibility of the attack was claimed by Baloch Liberation Army (BLA), a banned militant group which through this attack tried to give a new shift in their belligerent agenda by using women and young girls. This year in February 2023, a female suicide bomber was arrested who was being forced to support Balochistan Liberation Front (BLF). Investigations revealed that her husband and father belonged to the militant group and she was separated from her children as pressure tactic for becoming a suicide bomber. Thus besides poor financial conditions women have also been exploited for their social weaknesses. It has been evident from the events taking place that women and youth of Balochistan were being misled by the banned organizations with an objective to disrupt development process in the province. In particular, women mostly widows who are from poor background, some of them uneducated and having lack of knowledge about the laws are now forced by the militants for carrying out such anti-state militant activities. It has been noted by the investigation teams that a cultural norm has been exploited by the miscreants to manifest their nefarious designs of utilising women in the heinous acts. Balochi culture is nomadic in nature where women enjoy certain peculiar privileges. They are trusted for their nobility and respected for their higher stature they secure in Balochi traditions. They are therefore usually not checked at the security check posts and barriers by the security personnel. The anti-state elements thus cunningly employ them for their ulterior motives. It is however sad to report that after such incidents even the women can’t be spared from checking which besides an inconvenience also dents their nobility and prestige they enjoy in their rich and magnanimous culture. One wonders what good these miscreants have brought to the women in particular and Baloch people in general. It is however a good omen that still a large segment of women do not fall in their trap as they understand their evil designs and aim to thwart these. The separatists in Balochistan have different names yet pursuing similar objectives. For instance, Balochistan Liberation Front (BLF), is an ethnic-separatist political front and militant organization that is currently fighting against the Pakistani government for an independent Balochi state. With the goal of creating an independent Balochi state, BLF leaders state that they would like to see their party becoming a powerful and influential political enterprise so that fighting and diplomacy side by side can push Pakistan to recognize Balochistan as an independent state. The BLF uses rocket attacks, IED’s, small arms, social media and nationalist press statements to attempt for its goal of an independent Balochi state. On the other side, Balochistan Liberation Army (BLA) is a declared terrorist organization by Pakistan and has extensively remained involved in attacks against Pakistan security forces, and also chants for free Balochistan. Its leaders are mostly asylum seekers, running propaganda campaigns and often come up with new names just to confuse public and gain sympathy for their objectives. These separatist groups however have always remained active in one way or the other. It is worth considering whether such organizations should be tackled forcefully only or there are some other ways which can be strategized. Our youth who fall prey to such insurgent groups must be engaged before it is late. Likewise, considering the present situation in Balochistan which is often subjected to volatility by these insurgent groups, there is a need to bring youth of Balochistan on interactive platforms for engaging them in some productive activities with more opportunities where they can showcase their skills. There is an utter need for our society to be tolerant, resolve national issues with reconciliation and involve all stakeholders for long term peace nationwide. It is also the responsibility of government to provide better opportunities in education, health, skill-based trainings to the masses so that they do not feel deprived and become a useful and productive member of a society. Youth engagement and exchange programs among provinces, workshops, seminars and other training and grooming sessions will strengthen their morale and will encourage them to seek new opportunities and avenues, while absorbing them in mainstream. After all, when the Baloch are inherently magnanimous why shouldn’t the state respond in kind. The writer is Communication Strategist at the Institute of Regional Studies, Islamabad and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.