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The Truth about Pakistan
Justice Markandey Katju

The Truth about Pakistan
Justice Markandey Katju

In my opinion, the present violent strifes and disturbances in Pakistan are the logical and inevitable result of creating a theocratic state in this subcontinent and, hence, the only solution is the reunification of India, Pakistan and Bangladesh under a strong, secular, modern minded government, which does not tolerate religious extremism and bigotry, whether Hindu or Muslim, and crushes it with an iron hand....

As a distraction mechanism again and again, as when the Ershad military junta instigated fake Ayodhya-retaliation communal riots to distract from the national protests against the military regime. There have been other moments throughout the last 4o+ years.The chess game continues, and we continue to allow Bengali Hindus to be collateral damage, again and again……..

Progressive Leaders Demand Peaceful Solution to Kashmir Issue
Sardar Shaukat Ali Kashmiri

While lamenting the present geo- political scenario of the region, Sardar Shaukat Ali Kashmiri said that due to state sponsorship of the extremist forces in Pakistan the constituency of peace and democracy was under constant threat. The different actors were trying to destabilise the whole region. Whenever both countries come together such forces become active and Pakistani military also aggravates the situation……

Pakistanis, Why Butcher the English Language? Just Speak In Urdu
Sufia Zamir

I was recently proposed to by a young man who was otherwise the perfect eligible bachelor and quite the gentleman. He had been educated at a prestigious business school, with a job in Malaysia, and I was not expecting to hear him use phrases such as “anyways” and “sux”. It took a lot of effort on my part to convince myself that I was not being courted by a teenager still in high school. I constantly found myself mentally correcting his grammar and ultimately I realised that pursuing marriage with him would be nothing but a disaster....

 

A Moment of History in Bangladesh
Vidya Bhushan Rawat

The biggest untruth of partition of India was the division in the name of religion. The fact is that it was impossible for two people who have lived side by side for centuries to be divided by the thin line of religion as interdependency on our work and culture was the most important aspect of Hindu-Muslim relations in India. Even, the founder of Pakistan, Mohammad Ali Jinnah, who was a staunch secularist and who Sarojini Naidu once described as Ambassador of Hindu-Muslim unity, always felt that the issue of Pakistan was not religious but political....

 

It is Halal to rape female protestors. You might think that this fatwa was issued by some Talibani or Al Qaida leader out to suppress any voice that criticises them, right? Wrong. The fatwa was issued by an Egyptian Salafist cleric Ahmad Mahmoud Abdullah, ironically known as “Abu Islam” who owns a TV channel Ummah. He had issued the fatwa to silence the female protestors who were against the policies of the Morsi government....

All-Girl Teenage Pop Band Finding Harmony in Music and Islam
Anuja Jaiman

....is music really un-Islamic? He said that if women indulge in indecent, immoral acts such as singing, it would be a step toward their destruction. Is it really that simple in Islam? Of course it isn’t. The music of the Sufi mystics, meanwhile, has been around for centuries, and many celebrated musicians have sung their Ghazals and Quawalis. Whether classical or pop, there is good reason to let people get acquainted with music....

The Pakistan media has not given much coverage to the signing off of the agreement between the two countries. And those who covered it presented only the brighter side of the project. The media only highlighted the benefits Pakistan will gain from the port but did not give much coverage to the apprehensions and complaints of the people of Balochistan in which the port is located. ...

 

Nasheed, an Amnesty prisoner of conscience who spent several years in jail for dissent, has said the prosecution is politically motivated. The purpose, he says, is to ensure he cannot run in the presidential elections scheduled for 7 September. Any sentence will disqualify him from the race. If Nasheed is prevented from running, there will be unrest like the country has never before seen. He is loved by many, more than he is loathed by coup-makers and their supporters....

 

Shamelessly Shooting To Kill
Teesta Setalvad

....Babri Masjid was demolished as 3,000-4,000 men in uniform watched. His reply was a chilling recall of another fateful Sunday 21 years ago: “The video cassette recording by the Intelligence Bureau clearly documents that not more than 3,000-4,000 ‘Kar Sevaks’ were within close proximity of the mosque. In such a scenario, could no effective action have been taken? The reason why no action was taken lies elsewhere. The same cassette shows policemen rejoicing, with their hands held high in victory,....

The spurt in Jamaat violence became particularly noticeable after a rightwing cleric, Abul Kalam Azad, also known as Bachchu Razakar, was condemned to death by the ICT. Azad, who had, for years, compared Islamic programmes on television channels in Bangladesh, mysteriously fled the country before he could be taken into custody last year. He is reported to have found sanctuary in Pakistan....

The Canadian Mullah:  Don’t Question My Loyalty, Mr. Chief Justice
Murtaza Haider

“I swear (or affirm) that I will be faithful and bear true allegiance to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth the Second, Queen of Canada, Her Heirs and Successors, and that I will faithfully observe the laws of Canada and fulfil my duties as a Canadian citizen.”  Dr. Qadri has pledged allegiance to Queen Elizabeth and her heirs, many a founding fathers and mothers of Pakistan had pledged similar allegiances to Queen’s father and grandfather. Did we ever question the loyalty of those who served the British Raj before they served the land of the pure?....

 

Drame is leading efforts to raise money, collect goods and increase awareness about the conflict in his native country and its growing humanitarian crisis. In addition to clothes and other supplies, his group, Mali Relief, has pulled in nearly $50,000 for food, health, shelter and educational aid. Islamist extremists are waging war in the Malian north. French troops have intervened after the Malian government called for international support....

 

Demand Punishment for All Rabble-Rousers, Regardless Of Religious Affinity
Jyoti Punwani

Be it the Shiv Sena, Bhindranwale, or the Owaisis, the Congress has encouraged rabble-rousers of all communities, and acted against them only when forced to. The divisive poison spewed by all has been more or less of the same intensity, but Hindu demagogues have been protected oftener than their counterparts from other communities have. So, should the latter also be awarded the same impunity?...

Bangladesh Rises Against The Jamaat. Is Hasina With Masses?
Kanchan Gupta

The stunning Shahbag protest in Dhaka shows young Bangladeshis want nothing to do with Jamaatis. But why is the Awami League going soft on Razakars? Something remarkable is happening in Bangladesh which has gone under-reported, if not unnoticed, by newspapers and news television channels, especially in India. Given our media’s proclivity to get excited every time a non-event occurs in Pakistan, this is not entirely surprising....

 

Questions for Hafiz Saeed
MJ Akbar

A question for the internationally recognised terrorist, ideologue and mastermind of the 2008 Mumbai attack, Hafiz Saeed, resident of Lahore, who has just offered sanctuary in Pakistan to our superstar Shah Rukh Khan. Pakistan was carved out in 1947 to ensure security for this subcontinent's Muslims in a separate homeland. Why, six decades later, has Pakistan become the most insecure place for Muslims in the world?...

Indian Nationalism Does Not Veer Around the Mosques and Temples
Ram Puniyani

RSS combine has been whipping up the emotive messages through different programs. As outfit like RSS thrive on identity issues, Ram Temple is their major trump card. The arguments that Ram Temple is a symbol of our nationalism also seem to have smudged the issue in the minds of many. We know that Indian Nationalism does not veer around the mosques and temples. It is not a religious nationalism.....

It should be noted that the electronic and print media often see the cultural exchanges between India and Pakistan with suspicion. Even the participation of Pakistani children and adult artistes in Indian TV programmes like Laughter Channel are criticised saying it is a conspiracy of India to blur the notion of the Two-nation theory in the minds of Pakistani children so that they forget their Islamic identity....

Dr Tahirul Qadri:  Curiouser and Curiouser
Najam Sethi

SC is not impressed by Dr Qadri's revolutionary rhetoric or amused by his political antics. It has firmly rejected a petition by Dr Qadri praying for the dissolution of the ECP because it was not legitimately constituted. The SC has spurned the petition because the petitioner lacks locus standi by virtue of being a dual Pak-Canadian national. In fact, the SC has chastised Dr Qadri for having the audacity to meddle in Pakistan's constitutional matters while pledging loyalty to the Queen Elizabeth II...

 

The Rising Menace of Intolerance
Soli J. Sorabjee

Intolerance stems from an invincible assumption of the infallibility of one’s beliefs and a dogmatic conviction about their rightness. An intolerant society cannot tolerate expression of ideas and views which challenge its current doctrines and conventional wisdom. Consequently, unconventional and heterodox thoughts and views have to be suppressed. That is the prime motivation for censorship....

 

If Sri Lanka and Bangladesh can fight and root out terrorism, why can’t Pakistan? India will not hesitate to extend its help to Pakistan to fight terrorism on its land as it extended support to Bangladesh to make the region a peaceful and terror free zone. In the end, it is Pakistan that has to take the call....

The Narrative of Hyper-Nationalism and Constant Outrage at Artistic Expression
Sagarika Ghose

From the Grand Mufti's fatwa against the all-girl band in Kashmir, to the now lifted ban on the film Vishwaroopam, to Salman Rushdie's aborted visit to the Kolkata Book Fair, to the forcible removal of paintings at a Bangalore art gallery to protests against nude paintings at a Delhi art gallery, the freedom of artists, writers and filmmakers is threatened like never before. A class war accompanies the culture war....

 

A Five Point Formula for Riot-Free India
Asghar Ali Engineer

The secular forces, and I do not doubt their sincerity, do feel concerned about these riots but their concern lasts no longer than the riot itself. This halting approach does not make much of an impact. It is RSS mission and they work with great zeal round the year to spread communal poison but secular forces, much less in number, even much less in zeal, are no match for RSS Pracharaks.....

Parliament House Attack Convict Afzal Guru Hanged To Death at 8am
Afzal Guru

  “Afzal Was Calm during His Final Moments”

Afzal Guru Buried Inside Tihar Jail Complex

Afzal Guru's Family Wants Him Buried At Home

Afzal Guru's Family Was Informed Through Speed Post: Home Secretary

Victims’ Families Relieved After Afzal Guru Hanging

4 Injured, 1 Critical, Curfew Imposed In Kashmir

Key Dates in Afzal Guru Case

Omar Abdullah Appeals for Calm after Afzal Guru's Hanging

Security Stepped Up On Indo-Pak Border Following Afzal Guru's Hanging

President Rejected Afzal Guru's Mercy Petition on Feb 3: Union Home Secretary

For Details, Please click, ‘More’

How Religion and Music Are Connected In India
Aakar Patel

In Islam, more I suspect from the desert cultural traditions rather than the scripture, music is outside orthopraxy. What did Aurangzeb, the great Indian champion of Muslim orthodoxy, think of music? We know from Maasir-e-Alamgiri, the chronicle that the court bureaucrat Saqi Mustad Khan kept secretly for 49 years.....

 
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