Islam and Sectarianism
slaughtering of the minority Hazaras, Shias and currently the Punjabis, either
by the Taliban or by the extreme sectarian groups like the Lashkar-e-Jhangvi
(LeJ), is further complicating the situation in Balochistan. Indeed the outfits
like the LeJ are committed to eliminating the minorities like the Hazaras from
the face of the country and the Pakistani State is a mute spectator....
Since there is
an urgent need, and minorities have a longstanding demand, now even the Senate
committee has once again recommended that instead of blaming media and NGOs for
defaming Pakistan, government must bring this matter to parliament, and
introduce legislation to stop the ongoing forced conversion of girls and women
belonging to minority religions...
community regards its founder, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian in Punjab, as a
prophet and, for that reason; mainstream Muslims do not recognise them as a
part of their community. But the fundamental declaration of faith in Islam —
there is none to be worshiped but Allah and Muhammad is his prophet — does not
expressly say that Muhammad was the “last” prophet....
victims of this violence are the people of Balochistan who are being
systematically targeted by paramilitary groups, allegedly sponsored by the
Pakistani authorities. Extra-judicial killings and enforced disappearances are
the most common practices,”....
uses Hazara Shias as cannon fodder to fight its war in Syria. Poor Afghan
Hazaras residing in Iran are offered Iranian citizenship to fight in Syria. While
some Afghans are offered carrots, others are offered sticks. There are
indications others—including poor, illegal workers in Iran—are compelled to go
fight in Syria....
Unfortunately, far from being challenged, the “Shias versus Sunnis”
theme is still lazily rehearsed in much of the mainstream media. But while the
mainstream media fails to challenge IS’s sectarian propaganda, Iraqi activists,
bloggers, and citizens are constantly trying to establish a counter-narrative,
encouraging a language of unity and highlighting national identity beyond
ethnicity or religion....
guardians of the two prominent branches of Islam, Iran and Saudi Arabia, by
now, must call for a political truce; else, once known as one of the rare
cradles of human civilisation, the nations of the Middle East will soon turn
out to be a graveyard for sure....
The process of “expelling the trash” goes on among many nations. It is
visible as is intolerance in India these days but without the sanction of law.
Many nations have done it in the past through “pogroms” and concentration
camps, but in the 21st century it is the Muslim state that is particularly
afflicted by it, at times under law but also with impunity....
Pakistan, founded in 1947 as a homeland for India’s Muslims, once had a
very strong identity. But it has been discredited, at first through successive
military coups that undermined civilian governments, and later through
terrorism, insurgency and the vanishing writ of the state from great sections
of the country....
"My main intention was to objectively address as many key issues as
possible that one sect may have towards the other sect, and then break down the
misconceptions so that some kind of bridge could be built once they realise
they have so much in common"....
Ahmadis differ with other Muslim sects over the finality of Prophet
Muhammad as the last Prophet. The Ahmadi branch of Islam was founded on March
23, 1889, by Mirza Ghulam Ahmad in Qadian town of pre-partition Punjab. They
believe in the Prophethood of Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, and have endured
discrimination and violent persecution for holding this belief....
Pakistan was created in the name of Islam because all Muslims in south
Asia presumably felt like a nation. No one bothered to check if there were any
footnotes to this feeling. But soon after they got Pakistan, Muslims started
feeling odd living together. The first “exception” were the Ahmadis...
Yaqoob Khan Bangash
Yet most Pakistanis are not even bothered to treat them equally, let
alone better. Pakistanis are often quick to come out on the streets to protest
atrocities against Muslims elsewhere, be it the atrocities being committed in
Palestine, Burma or Kosovo (and I am not criticising that!), yet they are quiet
when their own co-citizens are abducted, forcibly converted, falsely charged
with blasphemy, raped and abused,,,
However, that night at Nankana Sahib, I had placed myself for the first
time in the shoes of the religious minorities and tried to feel, if only for a
fleeing moment, what they feel every time they are refused at a restaurant or
offered special utensils which they are expected to clean themselves...
How it was forcibly annexed to Pakistan, how the freedom movement there
was brutally crushed and leaders like Nawab Akbar Khan Bugti murdered by the
Pakistani state is another sordid story...
In 2006, when Shia tribes in Iraq wanted to retaliate after
Salafi-jihadists demolished a sacred shrine, Grand Ayatollah Sistani, Iraq’s
highest religious authority, told the Shias that the 'Sunnis are ourselves, not
just our brothers'. Sunni tribes also aggressively fought and almost defeated
Al-Qaeda in Iraq, an earlier incarnation of ISIS....
Think, dear patriotic Pakistanis, before you share photos of Israeli
terror and Donald Trump and Bharatiya Janata Party and Muslims in Burma and
Yemen and Syria. Think of all those poor, terrified, silent Christians who do
not know what their crime is living in the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. Think
of every mullah who has tried to hijack power in our country....
factions in conflict—a polite word for acrimony and divisions—under the
umbrella of the very Deen that instructs them that they are committing shirk by
rejecting the commandment of God, in whom they believe, that is, they have
not be of those who are polytheist-mushrik......
As Muslims, we already have enough Islamophobia and religious
misunderstandings to occupy our lives until the end of time. Therefore the
misunderstandings and bigotry that happen within our own communities is
baffling and honestly quite sad...
Was this country only made for Muslims? Do we, Christians, have no right
to live our lives? Will justice be done? Is this a safe place for our children?
I am familiar with government-issued statements that minorities have been given
equal rights; some minority parliamentarians are doing the same. Moreover, some
so-called patriots try to show their loyalty by criticising and alienating
Dr. Mike Ghouse
First of all, Prophet Muhammad knew only one group of people; Muslims!
Prefixes like Sunni, Shia, Ahmadiyya, Bohra, Ismaili, WD Muhammad, Alawaite,
Deobandi, Barelvi, Ahl-e-Hadith, Ahl-e-bait etc., were not in his vocabulary
nor can anyone ascribe these words to him – he did not use them. ....
I am proud that an Ahmadi in Pakistan strengthened my faith more than
any Maulvi could, that a Hindu in Pakistan showed me the art of coexistence
finer than a Muslim here could and that a Pakistani Christian taught me the
value of prayer better than any preacher could.....
Ajit Kumar Singh
Despite decades of military subjugation, demographic engineering, and
the ceding of some territories and influence to China, Islamabad has failed to
win the support of the people of GB. Its further militarization of the region
perpetuates a strategy of indiscriminate use of force to silence local voices,
even as local populations are progressively marginalized.....
Unlike the Taliban, who follow the Deobandi and Salafi strains of Islam,
Barelvis are relatively tolerant of minorities. Still, when I spoke with Raza
Rumi, a commentator and analyst based in Ithaca, he said that blasphemy was a
key issue for the Barelvis and that they condone violence to protect religion.