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Frayed ends of sanity

July 20, 2012 Leave a comment

BY  ON 05 29TH, 2010
Frayed ends of sanity

Over and over again I have been using Dawn and Dawn.com to hit home the point about the vicious, soul destroying mindset the bulk of Pakistan’s urban middle-classes (especially in the Punjab) have fallen in to.

I have tried to give numerous examples to highlight this devastating observation and here again is another one: On May 28 when terrorists associated with what is called the ‘Punjabi Taliban’ attacked various places of worship of the Ahmadiyya community in Lahore, the TV channels were out in force covering the gruesome event. However, that did not stop them from running happy-go-lucky commercials of their corporate sponsors during breaks, giving the whole event a rather surreal feel.

But this can be expected from this unfortunate republic’s many TV channels. There is now not an iota of doubt left about the level of sheer cynicism, sensationalism and demagoguery that they operate on. Most of them have become a reckless reflection of some of the most obnoxious, conspiratorial and chauvinistic sections found within the country’s convulsing middle-classes.

That said, one however does expect some semblance of decency and reason in the polished corridors of the companies that advertise their brands on these channels. Couldn’t any of these companies that always claim to be ‘good social citizens’ have the presence of mind and heart to ask TV channels to stop running their ads during the coverage of blood-splattered events?

Can’t they see how strange their ads look and sound when squeezed between images of blood, gore and tragedy? Don’t these ads with an unending series of plastic smiles and jingly material-worshipping actually end up mocking the tragedy that is unfolding live on the TV screens?

I don’t think such a thought even crosses their minds. And how can it when a number of the same companies so nonchalantly end up sponsoring TV shows run by utter hate-mongers. It’s quite a sight, really, watching macho, loud demagogues and so-called TV anchors spiting venom against the West and then asking for a break that are riddled with commercials of Western multinationals.

A religious TV show on a popular TV channel that in 2009 instigated violence against the Ahmadiyyas continues to be sponsored by various colas, facial creams, telecom brands and shampoos, and so is the show whose host is under scrutiny for allegedly having sympathies and links with terrorist organisations.

In my eyes the companies who claim to represent the decent, ‘family-oriented’ and peaceful ‘modern’ sections of the educated urbanites carry an equal amount of blame as do the channels that let hate-mongers run amok in the studios just to jack up their ratings.

It’s like shouting populist slogans mingled with idiotic juice, milk and telecom jingles over the dead bodies of all those unfortunate souls that these very channels so enthusiastically report and show.

Is there no one among us so-called educated urban classes with the sight, mind and conscience to at least question the kind of convoluted and surreal corporate-jihadi anarchy so clearly visible on TV channels?

Can’t we see that much of what is being preached and ‘debated’ on our channels in the name of religion, justice, reform and politics (and cynically being sponsored by multinationals), is one of the major reasons behind the confused and ravaged state our middle-classes (especially its youth) have come to suffer?

This is not an overstatement. Certain TV anchors and their shows have proven to have enough power to actually instigate violence. Examples are in abundance of idiots listening to idiots on TV, gathering hateful ideas about certain Muslim sects, ‘minorities,’ and personalities, with some actually going to the extent of committing murder in the name of religion.

And yet we can still see such TV anchors and their favourite side-kicks holding fort on prime-time television, and multinationals willingly sponsoring all the hatred and venom that is spewed on these shows.

So what is that narrative upon which a bulk of Pakistan’s ‘political’ and ‘religious’ TV programming is based on?

For years this narrative has gleefully been disseminated by the state, the clergy, schools and now the electronic media.  It’s quite simple: Pakistan was made in the name of Islam (read, a theocratic state). Thus, only Muslims (mainly orthodox Sunnis) have the right to rule, run and benefit from this country. ‘Minority’ religions and ‘heretical Islamic sects’ living as Pakistani citizens are not to be trusted. They need to be constitutionally, socially and culturally isolated. Parliamentary democracy too can’t be trusted. It unleashes ethnic forces, ‘corruption’ and undermines the role of the military and that of Islam in the state’s make-up. It threatens the ‘unity’ of the country; a unity based on a homogeneous understanding of Islam (mainly concocted by the state and its right-wing allies). Most of our political, economic and social ills are due to the diabolical conspiracies hatched by our many enemies (especially India, Israel and the West in general). They want to break up Pakistan because Pakistan is the ‘bastion of Islam’ in a volatile region dominated by Indian, American and Shia Iranian hegemony. The many terrorist organisations operating in Pakistan are foreign funded …

This narrative can go on in its bizarre depiction of what we as a country are or should become. Not for a moment are we ready to stand back a bit and look at what we have made of ourselves and of what we call our home. We call ourselves ‘moderate Muslims,’ and yet applaud or quietly tolerate the hate-spewing claptrap that pours out from our mosques and TV screens. We cheer about the fact that Pakistan is one of the very few democratic Muslim countries with a constitution, and yet we will not speak a word about those clauses and sections in the same constitution that have triggered violence and repression against women and have sanctioned a religiously apartheid state that only allows the orthodox Muslim majority democratic rights to rule the country, or run in an election.

Isn’t it obvious that not only do these sections in the much celebrated constitution go against the modern-Muslim vision of men like Mohammad Ali Jinnah, Iqbal and Syed Ahmed Khan, but are also against the basic spirit of tolerance, mercy and justice so vividly present in the Quran?

We have clearly lost sight of what Pakistan was supposed to be: A democratic, modern Muslim country where religion had nothing to do with the matters of the state and where the so-called ‘minorities’ were free to practice their respective faiths.

These are not my words. And neither are they the words that Pakistani children are taught at school, in spite of the fact that these words and thoughts were spoken by the founder of the country, Jinnah, when he succeeded in carving out a country for the Muslims of the subcontinent, thinking that they would struggle under what he believed would become a ‘Hindu theocracy.’

So what happened to that Pakistan? The obvious culprits in this regard are the many years of repressive military regimes and their growing nexus with obscurantist forces that we have had to burden and face. But were the democrats any better?

The 1973 constitution that legitimised religious apartheid was inaugurated under a brilliant and popularly elected Prime Minister and approved by equally elected members of the parliament. And even though the same constitution was further riddled with myopic laws against religious minorities and women by a fanatical and hypocritical ‘Islamic’ dictatorship, how many democrats that came after the demise of this dictatorship ever bothered to at least debate or review these laws?

So much has become taboo in this country — so much so that the question now arises, can we ever become a truly free, enlightened and intellectually robust nation? Or will we keep hiding behind our fragile masks of religiosity and ‘patriotism,’ a mask that goes up in front of our faces every time we are confronted by a situation in which our views and actions (especially in the name of faith) are questioned.

We do not debate. We react and then huddle up behind our flimsy and lopsided historical and national narratives for reassurance, cursing the world for our ills, looking out for ‘infidels’ and ‘heretics’ among us, or for scapegoats in the shape of media-constructed punching bags.

The nightmare we are living today has a lot to do with all this. We remain in a slumber, carving out an isolated ideological comfort zone for ourselves, while obnoxious, sectarian and so-called puritanical keepers of the faith attack and kill in the name of God whenever and however they please. We claim to be treading a middle-path between liberalism and fanaticism, when the truth is, it is exactly the middle-path that has gone entirely missing in how we think, behave, act and react.

NFP80 Nadeem F. Paracha is a cultural critic and senior columnist for Dawn Newspaper and Dawn.com.

 

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WELL DONE SIR

November 19, 2011 Leave a comment
Categories: Uncategorized

Destroying Education System in Pakistan

July 17, 2011 Leave a comment

The Federal Government of Pakistan and The Punjab Government have joined hands in destroying the education system in Pakistan. Federal government is trying to end up with HEC (Higher Education Commission) which has been applauded home and abroad for its job well done in the progress of higher education. The universities in the country increased as well as the number of Ph.D’s in the country as compared with the number a few years before. The funds allocated to HEC are being diverted un-productive departments. The duties of HEC are being allocated to those who have no idea of the job done by HEC.

Punjab Government on the other hand have decided to change the medium of education in all the schools in the province. I don’t know how the teachers who don’t even properly teach in Urdu will be able to teach in English. The books have been printed in English but the teachers have not been trained to teach in English.

I am sure that the next coming government will again change to Urdu medium because the students in rural area who are more than 60 percent of the lot will definitely show very poor results. Thus the number of students reaching Matric level will drastically reduce.

In fact a group of elites do not want a common man to come to their level. They are trying hard to let the common man remain behind in education and nobody to compete them.

God save Pakistan

Categories: Uncategorized

CAUSE OF PRESENT SITUATION IN PAKISTAN

July 14, 2011 Leave a comment

Quaid e Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah was able to create a new state in subcontinent against all odds. At that time most of the Muslim sects were supporting  All India Congress for a united India. Only Ahmadiyya Muslim sect was with All India Muslim League in its struggle for a separate homeland for the Muslims of  India. Then head of Ahmadiyya Jamaat Mirza Bashiruddin Mahmood Ahmad through his messages and speeches tried to assure the Muslims of India that it was their duty to support the cause of All India Muslim League. He helped and guided Quaid e Azam with his prayers and advices. When Pakistan came into being All those Muslim leaders who opposed the creation of a new state migrated here and started their efforts to destabilize the new born state with the financial help of there mentors. Unfortunately  Quaid e Azam passed away when Pakistan was just one year old. Now all the opponents of Pakistan saw the chance to destabilize and to merge this state again with India. Their major target was Ahmadiyya Jamaat. All their efforts resulted in first partial Martial law in Lahore to suppress the agitations against Ahmadiyya Jamaat, which were in fact efforts to to fail the then government. This tug of war between the “new born” politicians resulted in country wide Martial law by Gen. Ayub Khan. Ayub Khan ruled Pakistan for about 11 years and the country became stable and started its journey towards progress and prosperity. But those who did not like this progress again started their efforts and thus they were able to start agitations against Ayub government. A minister in Ayub government disagreed to some of the policies of then government and joined rather led the agitations. As a result another General Yahya Khan deposed Ayub Khan and took over. As a result of chaos the eastern wing of Pakistan became a separate independent state. Remaining half part was taken over by Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto (who led the riots against Ayub government) as a first ever civilian martial law administrator. On the basis of the elections held by Yahya government in united Pakistan, Bhutto called the National Assembly members of this half now called Pakistan in session and asked them to draft a constitution for the country.

Not many days passed after unanimously getting passed this constitution from National Assembly that a lot of  hue and cry started against Ahmadiyya Jamaat apparently backed by the Bhutto government. to subside this agitation Bhutto called the National Assembly session and declared it a committee to question the Head of Ahmadiyya Jamaat and to give a verdict about the Jamaat. The session continued for abut two weeks. At the end of  the session Bhutto got an already prepared document  signed by all the members of National Assembly according to which the Ahmadis were declared “Non-Muslims according to the constitution”. An amendment in the constitution was promulgated to this effect called as 2nd amendment. A unique decision of its kind taken by any parliament of the world. The Ahmadies did not accept this decision but at the same time did not take any legal step because it would be just useless.  Unfortunately this immoral and unjustified act of  Bhutto could not strengthen and prolong his reign. Because the “Mullahs” again started agitation against his government. As a result another martial law was imposed by Gen. Zia ul Haq. Afterwards he was tried and hanged in accusation to the murder of one of his opponent.  Zia ul Haq having a “Mullah’s” mentality, from very first day stated showing his enmity towards  Ahmadiyya Jamaat. To sum it up he promulgated an ordinance according to which it became an offense for an  Ahmadi to call himself a Muslim. A clause of three years imprisonment and fine was included in Pakistan Penal Code to this effect. As a result the Head of Ahmadiyya Jamaat had to migrate to London. He ruled the country for about 11 years and died in a plane crash. Peoples Party and Muslim League ruled the country one after the other but no party could complete its tenure. Every time the government was toppled and new elections were held Ahmadies were  asked to take part in elections as non-Muslims to which Ahmadiyya Jamaat did not agree and thus they were kept out of country politics.

And those who were against coming into being of Pakistan they came out in disguise as well wishers of the country. They knew that Ahmadies are loyal citizens of the country and will not like and allow any move to destabilize the country, so they started demanding that Ahmadies be removed from key positions. Thus one by one Ahmadies were taken away from all key positions and these positions were ironically filled by the people from Jamaat i Islami and other sections of heretic Muslims. Who did everything to make this country a failed state.

The interesting thing is that if anything was done for the progress and prosperity of the country, it was during the rule of Gen. Ayub Khan or Gen Pervez Musharraf who are called dictators by all the politicians.  Specially Peoples Party tried to take credit of every thin good done by these two i.e. Ayub and Musharraf.

After very briefly narrating the political development in Pakistan I try to the conclude that why Pakistan is going through this turmoil and there seems to be no way out of this day by day worsening situation.

Hadhrat Profit Muhammad (PBUH) said that When Allah Almighty want to punish any people cruel and careless rulers are appointed over them who will not care for anybody but themselves. That is the situation we are observing nowadays. Z.A.Bhutto in an attempt to solidify his rule used the National Assembly as a rubber stamp to get the decision of his own choice i.e. to declare Ahmadies as non-Muslims. As a result he became the only example in the world of a ruler deposed and crucified. Then Gen. Zia ul Haq went a step forward to promulgate an ordinance against Ahmadies the the cannot do anything to pose themselves as Muslims. The Head of Ahmadiyya Jamaat had to migrate to London. As a result of this ordinance a number of  had been martyred or put behind bars. Allah Almighty observers all actions and deeds of His creation. But He is Merciful and Forgiving. He gives time to transgressors and they think that nothing will happen to them. But when His time comes He punishes such people in a way that the world remembers. Zia ul Haq was boarding a C130 plane which is thought to be the safest plane. But He who is creator of everything in the universe has all the power. Zia’s plane exploded in the air and nothing was left of him and those accompanying him.

If one ponders over the deaths of these two strong rulers of Pakistan, it appears that these two defied Allah and His great Prophet Muhammad PBUH who prophesied a messenger similar to Prophet Jesus in Muslim Ummat. Prophet Muhammad PBUH said that if any one  comes to know of Mehdi and Messiah, he should go to him to offer him my greetings even if he has to crawl over snow mountains to reach there. But these to against all odds defied all these teachings of  Prophet Muhammad PBUH and did there best to put Ahmadiyya Jamaat (who believe that Mehdi and Messiah has come in person of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Qadiani) to trial and crucifixion and as a result reached their tragic end.

To conclude I will have to say that since National Assembly consists of representatives of the people of Pakistan, the decision of declaring Ahmadis non-Muslims will be taken as a collective decision of whole nation. Therefore consequences of this unjustified decision should be bore by whole nation. This is what we are seing now with our naked eyes. The situation will continue to deteriorate until something is done to nullify this decision. May Allah help the people in power to think sensibly so that the country comes out of the turmoil and moves on the path of progress and prosperity. Amen.

Categories: Uncategorized

Zardari is behind Benazir’s murder

July 11, 2011 Leave a comment

Bakhtawar Zardari, the daughter of former Prime Minister, Benazir Bhutto and Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari had tried to attempt suicide after extreme tension.

Sources told that Bakhtawar thinks that her father (Asif Zardari) is behind the murder of her mother Benazir Bhutto.

“The way Asif Zardari bringing himself up , neglecting the policies of PPP and forgetting one of the most powerful woman former Prime Minister, Benazir Bhutto made Bakhtawar extremely tense and to get relief from this tension she (Bakhtawar) tried to attempt suicide but the on time aid brought back her life” sources added

Bakhtawar is not the only one in fact most of the Pakistanis had doubts at the time when Benazir Bhutto was assassinated and these doubts are now becoming reality as Zardari trying to take those steps which are against the policies of PPP.

Asif Zardari (born 21 July 1956) is the son of a famous Pakistani industrialist Hakim Ali Zardari the chief of the Zardari tribe and the widower of the late former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto, whom he married on 18 December 1987. They had three children: Bilawal, Bakhtwar and Asifa

saaqibsays:

But how can it be possible that the son that is bilawal is with the father..
I believe that zardari did killed benazir because he is the only one taiking all advantege in the world of her death.. Who could have imagine Zardari as the president.. Even the thought of it is so disgusting.
But now nothing can be done. He is the most powerful man in pakistan and he can do whatever he wants to..
The best thing for that girl to do is to be away from zardari.. If it is possible to take bilawal with her and make it clear on the media that they have serious doubts abt zadari.. The only weapon we have now in pakistan is the media.. thanks to musharaf..

Categories: Uncategorized

Bakhtawar Zardari tries suicide

July 11, 2011 Leave a comment

Bakhtawar Zardari, the daughter of former Prime Minister, Benazir Bhutto and Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari had tried to attempt suicide after extreme tension.

Sources told that Bakhtawar thinks that her father (Asif Zardari) is behind the murder of her mother Benazir Bhutto.

“The way Asif Zardari bringing himself up , neglecting the policies of PPP and forgetting one of the most powerful woman former Prime Minister, Benazir Bhutto made Bakhtawar extremely tense and to get relief from this tension she (Bakhtawar) tried to attempt suicide but the on time aid brought back her life” sources added

Bakhtawar is not the only one in fact most of the Pakistanis had doubts at the time when Benazir Bhutto was assassinated and these doubts are now becoming reality as Zardari trying to take those steps which are against the policies of PPP.

Asif Zardari (born 21 July 1956) is the son of a famous Pakistani industrialist Hakim Ali Zardari the chief of the Zardari tribe and the widower of the late former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto, whom he married on 18 December 1987. They had three children: Bilawal, Bakhtwar and Asifa

Categories: Uncategorized

DID ASAMA REALLY DIE?

June 13, 2011 Leave a comment

There is a lot of hue and cry about Asama’s death. A lame person like me has a lot of doubts about all this. I think that it was all just a drama to pressurize Pakistan and its government. There are so mane contradictory versions about the operation. there are conflicting statements about the number of people killed or arrested during the operation. There are contradictory reports of the happenings in Abbotabad. Sometime Obama claims to watch all the operation via satellite, sometimes he comes out with a totally different version. Sometimes it is said that Asama was killed after an exchange of gunfire. Sometimes it is said that Asama had no weapon in his hands when his residence was ambushed. Then if at all he was killed whether after an exchange of fire or without it then it was necessary that his body was shown on media so that world had no doubts about his demise. Contrarily his body was secretly sunk in the depth of see. This action also puts so many doubts in the minds of sane people. As far as I could conclude from all this drama was that Asama was killed somewhere else may be in Afghanistan and to pressurize Pakistan this drama was staged to show that he was hiding in Pakistan and was killed there. There is another conclusion to it that US no more needed the threat of Asama and wanted a drop seen. Since 9/11 only one photograph are picture of Asama has been shown every where in media. Even his picture after death seems to be a little distorted version of the same picture. The facts are always facts and they cannot be distorted by dramas and cooked stories.

 

Categories: Uncategorized
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