Wednesday, 27 May 2015

How Pakistan Became a Religious State? An account of situation before partition: Part 1

To understand how religion came into the politics of Subcontinent and resulted creation of Pakistan, Roderick Mathews, in his book Jinnah Vs Gandhi says “Gandhi began his career looking for a way to realize his religious aims in political terms, while Jinnah ended his career looking for a way to fulfil his political aims in religious terms. Both mixture of religion with politics and means with ends, produced drastic and momentous decisions that can only be described as misjudgments” (Jinnah Vs Gandhi page 39)

Although Mr. Gandhi who was leading Congress Party in British India, never believed the role of religion in politics but his way of life, teaching of non-violence and preaching of moral values  were a kind of religious mindset. Majority of the top leaders in Congress Party were all Hindu and some of them were even hardliners. Congress Party being a leading political power and Hinduism being a dominant religion of Subcontinent, resulted a political and social discomfort in minority groups which include Muslims, Sikh, Christian and Zoroastrians.

 In 1906 All India Muslim League came into being. In its initial period, Muslim League was not a totally monolithic Muslim majority party. Majority of the Muslims Ulma and Scholars opposed the idea. Even Muhammad Ali Jinnah was not convinced in such kind of division in Indian Subcontinent. 
Some of the Muslim leaders tried to unite the Muslims of Subcontinent around the definition of a single nation. There were no other strong geographical, ethnical and linguistic bases of this nationalism and the only base was religion. Therefore, the two nation theory came into being which asserted that Muslims and Hindu are two separate nations and cannot live together. This ultimately convinced Muhammad Ali Jinnah to demand a separate country for the Muslims of Subcontinent. Muhammad Ali Jinnah has his own interpretations of a Muslim Society which were not harmonized with majority of the hardliner Muslim scholars. For Jinnah, Islam was all about humanity, social justice and equality.

Jinnah’s idea of separate country was strongly opposed by the major Muslim Ulma which included the then Chief of Jamaat-I-Islami Mawalana Abul Ala Maududi. According to Maududi, Jinnah himself was not a full practicing Muslim with limited knowledge of Islam and Sharia. So he was not competent enough to create an independent Muslim country.  Some Muslim leaders like Mawlana Abul Kalam Azad opposed the idea on the basis of scattered Muslim population in subcontinent. According to him, a separate country consisting of the Muslim majority provinces will create problems for all those Muslims who were living in Hindu majority states (which were more in numbers then the Muslims living in Muslim majority provinces) will be in minority and suffer in future.

Muhammad Ali Jinnah kept the ideology of Pakistan as vague as possible. He never professed that Pakistan will only be an Islamic country nor denied it. The reason behind this vague strategy was to get the support of both liberals and conservative Muslims.  His clear stance might hamper any one of the group which ultimately jeopardize the whole movement. This vague strategy provided everyone an opportunity to interpret Jinnah’s vision of Pakistan for their own vested interest after the partition.  

In the initial period soon after the partition, Pakistan was a somewhat liberal and tolerant country but over a period of 68 years it became a theocratic and conservative state. How this happened, we will discuss in our next blog. Meanwhile, I will appreciate your comments and feedback on my blog page.
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Saturday, 23 May 2015

The Funny National Action Plan (NAP)

Currently our civil and military establishments are on the same page (at least both say so) for liberating our mother land from terrorists. Our politicians and generals at last started believing that this is not Uncle Sam’s war, this is actually our war. This was a big change which, both the fictions of our society, liberals and patriots, celebrated equally, the liberals being jubilant about the triumph of democracy and the patriots by praising the only Islamic Nuclear Army. The government chalked out a National Action Plan (NAP), which again, both the groups celebrated, Liberals pleased themselves with great national consensus happened and patriots, by thanking Chief of Army staff who forced the coward civilian government to make this happen. The government abolished the moratorium on death penalty and established military courts for speedy justice! Celebrations went to its new heights! The independent media started counting the hangings! One terrorist hanged in Faysalabad! Every one cheered up! The counting went on… two… three… four and so on….. Stopped at seven…..paused for a week. All those who were involved in attacks on a former army chief were hanged and the great civil and military leaders believed that enough justice has been done.
Thanks to the NAP for letting us know that, there were only seven terrorists throughout the country. Look at the biasness of the west and Uncle Sam, They are still considering our motherland a safe haven for terrorists in spite of the fact that we have only seven terrorists among 180 million Pakistanis! What an irony. Why are they still considering the Peshawar school and church incident, moon market blast and so many others in mosques and churches as an act of terrorism? Who said the person who killed Saman Taseer, a bloody civilian, in a busy market is a terrorist? We never terrorized by this incident and thanks to our Honorable Islamabad High court for reminding us that this was not an act of terrorism. So how can our government commit contempt of court while hanging all those who are involved in brutal killings of countless civilians in so many terrible incidents for the past two decades? At least being Islamic Republic of Pakistan, how can the government declare these well-wishers of the nation as terrorists as many of them even had provided opportunity to recite the Kalma before killing the masses?
Now our great National Action Plan is in action against the general public and strict accountability of civilians has been started. All those who were involved in crimes other than the terrorism, are hanging one by one now.