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Islam and Sectarianism

There are groups in Pakistan that act like this as well. This despite the fact that Pakistan’s founder, Muhammad Ali Jinnah, dreamed of a modern and moderate country where citizens - Muslims, Hindus and Christians - were free to worship whoever they liked, as he went to great lengths to emphasize in his address to the Constituent Assembly, three days before Pakistan’s creation.

 

After Iraq, Yemen, Syria, Lebanon and Bahrein, is North Africa the next realm of a more assertive Iranian foreign policy? These fears come from Iran’s attempt to expand its influence in Algeria, Mauritania, Morocco, and Tunisia – and its “backyard:” Senegal, Niger, Guinea and Mali....

 

No wonder for centuries human beings have been trying to be humane. Yet, it seems an unfinished agenda. Sadly, often the protagonists of religions happen to be in the forefront of violations of the teachings of the founders of the religions they follow. Let’s remind them what the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) had said in his last sermon “… An Arab has no superiority over a non-Arab, nor does a non-Arab have any superiority over an Arab; a white has no superiority over a black, nor does a black have any superiority over a white.”...

 
Letter from Deathbed
Yasser Latif Hamdani
Letter from Deathbed
Yasser Latif Hamdani

When Captain Safdar’s antecedents in Majlis-e-Ahrar, Jamaat-e-Islami and Jamiat-e-Ulema-Hind were trying to destroy the foundations of this country and abusing Jinnah as Kafir-e-Azam and Pakistan as Kafiristan, it was the Aga Khanis, Ahmadis, Christians, Dalits and scheduled caste Hindus who stood with Jinnah against Majlis-e-Ahrar and other traitors like Khaksars, Khudai Khidmatgars and Jamiat-e-Ulema Hind — all of whom had sold themselves to the Indian National Congress....

Where Should Hazaras Go?
Mohammed Hanif
Where Should Hazaras Go?
Mohammed Hanif

If you were a Hazara in Pakistan, you were a marked person. If death didn’t catch you in a bomb blast, it would come in the shape of a bullet in the back of your head. It didn’t matter if you worked for the police or any security agencies, it didn’t matter if you were an Olympian boxer or a famous TV actor or a much loved school teacher; all were on an arbitrary death row....

 
Pakistan, Land of the Intolerant
Mohammed Hanif
Pakistan, Land of the Intolerant
Mohammed Hanif

As I grew up, Ahmadis went from being treated as zealous reformist Muslims to non-Muslims to Kafir, or heretics — worse even than Hindus or Jews. In the mid-1980s, a decade after Ahmadis were declared non-Muslims, another set of laws forbade them to act like Muslims. This is the tricky bit, because Ahmadis insist on calling themselves Muslim and behave like Muslims.....

We cannot talk critically about religion in this society. Every society, howsoever religious its population might be, will have a few people who do not believe in God or religion. Do we have such people in Pakistan? There must be some. Do they dare come out and declare their existence? Could they come forward and have discussions about their point of views and/or beliefs with all the theists who are around...

 

What happens then to our sense of fair play when it comes to the rights of those who may not adhere to the majority faith in our own countries? The recent tirade against Ahmadis by the dubious Captain Safdar springs to mind. The very fact that the floor of the National Assembly could be used for such invective is mind-boggling. Nor is he alone in attempting to demonise this community....

 
This Silence That Can Kill
Kamila Hyat
This Silence That Can Kill
Kamila Hyat

The incident also raised questions over Captain Safdar’s alleged support for certain right-wing segments. We also have the newly formed Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan in Lahore, which had received over 7,000 votes in the NA-120 by-poll last month. The TLP had taken voters away from the party to which Safdar himself belongs, the PML-N, and of which his father-in-law Mian Muhammad Nawaz Sharif is chief. The TLP campaigned carrying posters of convicted killer Mumtaz Qadri; the posters are still pasted across areas of that constituency....

 

The persecution of religious minorities in Pakistan, including minority Muslims, traces back to how the agenda of Pakistan’s movement was formulated and how Pakistan as a country grew after it became an independent state. The question of why Pakistan’s founding fathers needed Islam to build an agenda for an independent state is still hotly debated both inside and outside the country.....

 

Ahmadi Muslim. The two words I am not allowed to put together if I write for a publication in Pakistan, or speak on national television. Once, it was simply the details of the punishment meted out to Ahmadis for practising Allah's name that I had listed — an ordinance of the Pakistan Penal Code and not my personal opinion — which were edited out from an op-ed I wrote for a national daily. Another time, during a talk show on a leading news channel, my comments on the persecution of Ahmadis were not bleeped out — the whole portion, in fact, was edited....

 
What Lies Ahead For Ahmadis
Yasser Latif Hamdani
What Lies Ahead For Ahmadis
Yasser Latif Hamdani

So this idea that Pakistan was created in the name of Islam is an entirely false idea based on a lie. Yes some populists might have used Islamic slogans but so did opponents of the Muslim League. Maulana Ataullah Shah Bokhari, a man championed as a freedom fighter by India to the extent that even Nehru sent moving eulogy on his demise, famously declared that voting for Muslim League or for Mr. Jinnah is like eating pork. Mazhar Ali Azhar of Majlis-e-Ahrar called Jinnah Kafir-e-Azam and Pakistan Kafir-i-stan. Their abuse against Pakistan and Jinnah is a matter of record. ....

Merchants of Hate
Kamal Siddiqi
Merchants of Hate
Kamal Siddiqi

However, the fact that a senior member of the ruling party would make such a statement is indeed unfortunate. This is because it gives encouragement to those who use violence to justify their beliefs. In the past, members of the Ahmadi community have been killed after statements were made against them. Who can forget the killing of two Ahmadi persons in Hyderabad after a famous TV talk show host condemned the community on television a day earlier....

 

Awan indulged in the most shameful bigotry by questioning not only the beliefs but also the patriotism of Ahmadis by suggesting that the minority should not be recruited in the armed forces or the judiciary. In that hateful diatribe, Awan also raised objections on the decision to name the Physics department of Quaid-e-Azam University (QAU) after Dr Abdus Salam, Pakistan’s first Nobel laureate....


 

The media has, of course, spiralled out to become a complex field that any otherwise efficient officer may find too hot to handle. The internet has broadened the frontiers of information, which means that what is written in a country is no longer confined to its borders. Both friends and foes use cyberspace....

 

This also reminds me of your deeply profound love and affection for Shaheed-e-Millat Mumtaz Qadri. I wonder why Raza Hiraj sahib did not make it to your illuminating sermon. The nation will always remain indebted to you for standing against the rights of Ahmadis in Pakistan. Why shouldn’t the religion of every Pakistani be the state’s business? These infidels deserve no share in government and public sector; armed forces and judiciary. Never in your pious lifetime, never!...

It is about time the social narrative of the country is revisited. Fanaticism, aggression and intolerance are not the postulates of the Islamic ideology. The followers of aggression will generate aggression whereas a new narrative of love thy neighbour will provide a sound foundation to a civilized Pakistan and in the real sense we would achieve Jinnah’s Pakistan....

 

We need to leave behind a country where no one will hand out certificates of patriotism, where no one will ask which faith/sect you belong to, where your religion is not the State's business, where you can have a peaceful debate on religion without worrying for your safety, where you can walk without the fear of a terrorist attack and where people - even powerful parliamentarians - are taken to task for hate speech. If our ruling elite is actually interested in a progressive and peaceful Pakistan, they need to challenge the narrative of the far-Right....

He also called for Nobel Laureate Dr Abdus Salam’s name to be delinked from Quaid-i-Azam University’s physics department, which has recently been renamed — by his own father-in-law, the former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif — in honour of the celebrated Pakistani scientist....

And

Mainstreaming Of Bigotry

Pakistan: Sectarian Spite
Tushar Ranjan Mohanty
Pakistan: Sectarian Spite
Tushar Ranjan Mohanty

Islamist terrorism continues to flourish in Pakistan as a result of the state strategy of support to externally directed terrorist formations. Domestic terrorism remains essentially a blowback phenomenon, and will continue to afflict Pakistan as long as the establishment continues to support certain terrorist formations in its policy of using these as "strategic assets" against its neighbours....

 

But what he could not do was to put an end to the Safavid Empire in Iran – it survived. And part of its strategy for survival was to give permanent form to its borders with neighbouring Turkic Sunni empires. The Safavids made their borders permanent by vigorously promoting Twelver Shi’ism on the Iranian plateau and persecuting those who would not conform. Both Ottomans and Safavids used sect to define themselves against the other, mark out their grand strategic goals and above all – to justify using fire and sword against internal dissent....

 

It’s hard for Muslim Americans to celebrate black Muslims’ success in entertainment — whether it’s Ali, Chapelle, Busta Rhymes, Akon, Lupe Fiasco, Ice Cube, Iman or many others — when black people are not seen on par or as equal with the immigrant Muslim diaspora due to class divides....

 

Instead of attacking and destroying the Baloch, Sindhis, Pashtun, or Muhajirs, the Pakistani military establishment should focus on eliminating safe havens for international terrorists like Al-Qaeda, ISIS and the Afghan and Pakistani Taliban. I join all of you in recognising the sacrifice of the Baloch people. May the sacrifice of thousands of Baloch men and women – bear fruit and Balochistan get justice....

 

"Why should citizens of a country be deprived of building a place of worship in the capital city of that country? Even in Sunni-dominated areas where the Shiite residents number less than a hundred families, there are still Shiite mosques and Hosseiniyehs [Shiite worship halls]. Having a place of worship, be it a temple, mosque or church, is the right of every citizen, and it is against the law and human rights to take this right away. The only person who can solve this problem is Ayatollah Khamenei."....

 

The Sunni question in Iran is very sensitive, and the establishment in Tehran walks a delicate line in its attempts to build relations that could lead to Sunni integration. At the same time, the establishment's primary concern is to protect the country from attempts at destabilization — a hard task that requires the patience of a rug weaver and the exactitude of a careful artist....

 
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NEW COMMENTS

  • Good column! Jamelle Bouie is a very valuable acquisition for NYTimes' op-ed page.
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Let us fight this oppression rather than talk about who is more responsible for it
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • When governments pander to orthodoxy, they make good governance impossible.
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • @Mohammad Hussain HINDUS HAVE ALWAYS LIVED IN HARMONY WITH ALL COMMUNITIES. TROUBLE SHOOTERS GET WHAT....
    ( By Dev Soni )
  • @Na H Il FACTS ARE BASED ON COMMON SENSE, WHICH IS MOST UNCOMMON WITH PEOPLE WHO USUALLY BRUSH IT ASIDE.
    ( By Dev Soni )
  • @ Dev Lmao even rioters nd supporters of mass murderers look concerned abt "harmony" No one can handle...
    ( By Mohammad Hussain )
  • @Dev Soni I would really like to know the fact....
    ( By Na H Il )
  • MADRASSAS ARE THE ROOT CAUSE OF RELIGIOUS FANATICISM AND SHOULD BE BANNED FOR RELIGIOUS HARMONY.
    ( By Dev Soni )
  • Iam humbly requesting all the learned friends please don't waste...
    ( By Attaullah Mahdi )
  • In India secularism means that tolerance of atrocity and exploration...
    ( By Satchidananda Mishra )
  • I think this is the best way to make presence on fb
    ( By Madhukar Sibal )
  • If any nation wants to learn how to treat a minority in times of need, please....
    ( By Ghulam Hussain )
  • Madarasas will flourish till the day of judgement. The critics and anmeies...
    ( By Ashiq Dar )
  • “It is reported that the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “Surely, in the body there is a small piece of flesh....
    ( By Ghulam Ghaus Siddiqi غلام غوث الصديقي )
  • This write-up points out to us a very deplorable situation developing in Pakistan. Pakistan has done practically nothing to....
    ( By Ghulam Ghaus Siddiqi غلام غوث الصديقي )
  • Fully agree that "Oppression of Women Has Nothing to Do With Islam Rather It Is the Consequence of Cultural Practices"
    ( By Kaniz Fatma )
  • The usual meaningless whataboutery from Hats Off!'
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Hats Off maliciously exaggerates "muslim sense of entitlement. and of course their inbred hatred of idolaters and polytheists, ....
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • by the where were you hiding after the lahore church blast? and under which stone....
    ( By hats off! )
  • islamophobia is the best defence against the islamic/muslim sense of entitlement...
    ( By hats off! )
  • sahih muslim 4-1039. so that is what the favorite wife of the prophet said...
    ( By hats off! )
  • Your criticism of Qutb was lukewarm but your support is firm.....
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Only the ignorant hatemongers still continue to badmouth CAIR...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • You read the Quran as a slavish literalist but you do not have the wisdom to see....
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • You don't even have the sense to see that Pamela Taylor is not a critic of Islam...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • My question arose from your self-invented hypothesis that God sent subsequent....
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Only a slavish literalist would call someone an apostate for rejecting words that insult....
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Not only were Ilhan Omar's arguments valid, she knows the U.S. Constitution...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • The ILO defines "gender equality" as follows: "Gender equality entails the concept....
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • I wonder how GM sb is blind to my criticism of Syed Qutub. However, I will not throw out the baby with the....
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • every facilitator of cair or stealth jihadis by definition speak the truth. just like the "moderates".
    ( By hats off! )
  • I say what Allah says in the Quran about the Quran and about His previous Books. I do not say anything....
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • You are digressing. Pamela only sees problems and not solutions and the fact that the guidance....
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • You are the one who raised the question and have the answer as to why the final revelations....
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Are you asking questions or taking up a position ? You are rejecting the verses which makes you an apostate. You ....
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • most of the islamic terrorists quote either hadees or the qur'an. those quoting....
    ( By hats off! )
  • Naseer sb. asks, "What is your basic belief about verse 9:5 which...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Naseer sb. is now trying to use the Quran as a weapon of war against me....
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Naseer sb, asks, "Has GM sb proved that any people of earlier scriptures ....
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Without seeing a problem, how is one going to find a solution? As I said before...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )