Books and Documents

Islam and Sectarianism

Minorities in Pakistan Are Not Equal Citizens of the State
Yasser Latif Hamdani

just before partition of India, the founding father of this country Mr Jinnah attempted to woo the Sikhs to the new state by offering them 40 percent guaranteed representation in Pakistan’s Armed Forces, Judiciary and civil services. He also offered them an autonomous region Patiala — within the Pakistani federation. If that was enough Jinnah also promised them a veto over any legislation or constitutional provision, which they thought would infringe on their rights. The Sikhs rejected the proposal after serious consideration by calculating that Jinnah did not have long to live and any promises he was making would not be honoured by his successors....

Only Tolerance Can Ensure the Survival of Humankind
Dr Ramesh Kumar Vankwani

In today’s globalised and interdependent world, all of us are aware that human societies are diverse. There are countless differences between people. However, the quality that allows us to accept that other people have the right to say and do as they please is known as tolerance. In simple words, tolerance doesn’t mean agreeing with other people. Instead, it involves with disagreeing with others in a respectful manner....

“We don’t make wine to sell, and we don’t force people to drink,” said Shahi Gul, 50, a mother of six. “We are blamed by the local clerics as using wine to tempt Muslim youth, which is not true. We do this as it is allowed in our religion and culture.” Gul, whose sisters and niece converted to Islam, said she worries about the conversion of so many young Kalashas, especially through marriage. She said girls are “easily converted” by Muslim visitors who woo and marry them....

Shia Hazaras are a Persian-speaking ethnicity of Mongolian decent who immigrated from Bamiyan, the Hazara region of central Afghanistan. Earlier, they had arrived in colonial India as labourers to feed their families; subsequently, they were forced to flee by the tyrant ruler Abdur Rahman Khan. Many Hazaras settled in Quetta, in close proximity to the cantonment area, owing to their employment in the army....


Pakistan’s Apex Court Passed the Blasphemy Test by Acquitting Asia Bibi despite Clerics’ Anger
Khaled Ahmed

What the Supreme Court has done is unprecedented: It has stood up for a poor mother of three trapped in a collective lust for violence. No one could have rescued her, not the president with a pardon, not the prime minister with guts to stand by the targeted Christian community....


Blasphemy and Pakistan:  A Great Wrong Was Righted
Mohammed Hanif

Pakistani conservatives, emboldened by gains in the general election this summer, goaded the generals into rebelling against the army chief, whom they accused of being an Ahmadi, a persecuted religious minority. They called Prime Minister Imran Khan a “Jew child.”...


Pakistan Acquits Asia Bibi:  Mixing Truth with Falsehood In The Name Of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh) Was Also Not Short Of Being Blasphemous
Farahnaz Ispahani

Justice Khosa’s opinion added, “Blasphemy is a serious offence but the insult of the appellant’s religion and religious sensibilities by the complainant party and then mixing truth with falsehood in the name of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him) was also not short of being blasphemous.”...

It Is Time After Pittsburgh To Defeat All Forms Of Racism
Rachel Shabi

In the wake of the tragedy of Pittsburgh, the murder of 11 Jewish people at a synagogue in America’s most deadly act of antisemitism, we have heard a repeated cautionary refrain: that words have consequences. Donald Trump’s White House denies that the president’s rhetoric has any impact on reality.


Unfortunately, it has become fashionable for sections of the upper middle class and even for some middle-class families to have their child domestic help accompany them to public places. They do this without realising that they are displaying their class arrogance and superiority in a most crude manner.


Although the Ahmadis regard themselves as Muslims, their persecution and marginalization is considered legitimate and often encouraged across Pakistan. Against this backdrop, the community has suffered inconceivable persecution in the country. This kind of treatment has remarkably caused international human rights concerns...

What would these great schisms in Christianity and Islam mean to an atheist? Wouldn’t he laugh? What would he be thinking while observing the struggle between a Shiite and Sunni, and later the hundred other “beliefs” that fissured the once monolithic faith emanating from Mecca and Medina?...


Bigots Baying For the Blood of Aasia Bibi: Stand Up For the Victims of Blasphemy Law
Ailia Zehra

The justice system fails the blasphemy accused because the accuser is allowed to act as judge, jury and executioner. According to statistics, a large number of blasphemy accused in Pakistan were killed before their respective trials were over. The lynching of university student Mashal Khan over false allegations of blasphemy last year and the killing of a Christian couple in Kot Radha Kishan in 2014 are two instances (there are numerous others) where allegations of blasphemy led to loss of lives in the most brutal way....

Islamic Hardliners Vow To Kill Aasia Bibi and the Justices If They Acquit Her of Blasphemy Charges
Asia Bibi

In Pakistan, a Christian mother of five who was accused of blaspheming the Prophet Mohammed in 2009 awaits the decision that will mark her fate — but even if she is granted clemency, Islamic hardliners stand prepared to act on their threats against her life and that of the justices who will decide....

"Sunni rulers have viewed with much anxiety the new ‘Shiite crescent' that extends from Iran to Lebanon," said Dr. Ahmad Mousalli from the American University of Beirut, indicating that this is the main reason why the Syrian crisis became more of a regional problem rather than a local one, as it was seen as an opportunity to weaken the Shiites and replace them with a Sunni government....

Europe’s perplexed Pakistanis
Pervez Hoodbhoy

Isolation from the mainstream has extracted a price in the general well-being of immigrants, particularly for Pakistan-origin Brits. Muslim school students — of which a full 40 per cent are Pakistanis — have been documented as underachievers. Muhammad Anwar, a social scientist and author of British Muslims and State Policies argues that Pakistani-Brits generally have education achievement levels lying at the low end of all ethnic minorities in Britain.

Situation of Minorities in Bangladesh Is a Human Rights Issue
Tasmiah Nuhiya Ahmed

The status of minorities all over the world has demonstrated a pattern of discrimination and insecurity. Bangladesh is no exception. Violent attacks on religious minorities in Bangladesh prompted popular protests at home and abroad, and the minority communities think that it is an attempt to force them to leave the country as in 1971.They fear that the extent of the dreadfulness of attacks on the minorities might exceed what they had seen in 2001...

Ahmadis Follow All Articles Of Faith and Practices of Islam; In Addition They Owe Allegiance to Mirza Ghulam Ahmad
Lt Gen Syed Ata Hasnain (Retd)

They opened themselves to the allegation that they do not believe in the finality of the Prophet as the last Messenger of God. They claim MGA was sent to end religious wars, condemn bloodshed and reinstitute morality, justice and peace just as it is predicted in Islam but they have never questioned the finality of the Prophet’s word. There are four million Ahmadis in Pakistan and 10-20 million around the world....


To Wilfully Use Religious Sentiment for Worldly Gain Is Now Firmly Part of Pakistan’s Political Culture
Pervez Hoodbhoy

For them this is a slippery slope leading down to the unthinkable: a day when Ahmadis would be accepted as normal citizens of Pakistan. The backlash came from within PTI and from without. The strongest pressure to dismiss Atif Mian came from right-wing and centre-right parties — JUI (F), PML-N, MMA and JI. But even the nominally secular ANP, which lost hundreds of its members to Taliban suicide attacks, hit its political opponent with a religious club....

Naya Pakistan or the Same Old Bigoted Pakistan?
Arshad Alam, New Age Islam

Today, it is an Ahmadi; tomorrow it could a Shia. Yet another day it can be the Sufis. There is a problem at the ideological foundation of Pakistan itself. The country will continue to create enemies out of its own people, till the time it actively confronts its past. Pakistan today needs to dialogue with the ghosts of Jinnah and Iqbal and perhaps tell them unequivocally that they were wrong in ways in which they conceptualised Islam as the ideological bedrock of the state of Pakistan....

Ahmadis of Pakistan: Nobody Should Have the Right to Define or Categorise Who Is A Muslim and Who Is Not
Ishtiaq Ahmed

People have wondered how an economist enjoying the respect of his peers worldwide could be denied inclusion simply because of his faith in Ahmadiyyat. Those who argue that it is consistent with the constitution and laws of Pakistan which describes them as non-Muslims assert that they should not claim to be Muslims. If they accept their status as non-Muslims, they can enjoy all those rights and protections which other minorities are entitled to according to the Pakistan constitution....

Discrimination against Ahmadis Emblematic of Pakistan’s Deeper Psychosis of Identity
Husain Haqqani

I have run into many Pakistanis with PhDs, including some who work for the World Bank, who argue in favour of Pakistan’s constitutional discrimination against Ahmadis. “Why don’t they just acknowledge that they are not Muslims, then they can live in Pakistan, like Hindus, Christians, Sikhs and Parsis,” one of them once asked me....


Let Us Hope That the Pakistani Leadership's Abandonment Of An Ahmadi Economist Is The Last Such Incident
Kaswar Klasra

Radical Islamists took to the streets of Pakistan on September 1, to protest Prime Minister Imran Khan's appointment of former Princeton University scholar Atif Mian, a minority Muslim of the Ahmadiyya faith, to the Economic Advisory Council (EAC). Demanding that Mian be removed from the EAC, a key forum that advises the prime minister on economic issues, demonstrators threatened to lock down Pakistan's major cities, including Islamabad, its capital....


Today It Might Be Shias, Christians and Hindus, Tomorrow It Can Be You and Me
M Khudadad Chattha

A Pakistani waited for his flight to move thousands of miles away from home. This moment was anything but insignificant. Leaving behind his hometown and a promising career in the Police was the hardest decision of his life. He clearly wanted to stay. But it is hard to stay when you, your family and your whole community is being butchered by militants. His batch mates would soon be promoted to senior ranks in the police. And he would soon start a new life as an Uber driver in New York City....

Unceremonious Removal of Ahmadi Economist Shows the End of Meritocracy in Pakistan
Yasser Latif Hamdani

Allama Iqbal, the renowned Muslim philosopher, was an admirer of the founder of the Ahmadi movement and is rumoured to have joined it for a while as well before turning viciously vehemently and vociferously against it. Maulana Azad, the great Islamic scholar, considered the Ahmadis to be “Ghulat” i.e. a group that has transgressed the boundaries of divine faith but nonetheless is reported to have mourned the death of the founder of the Ahmadi movement....


Ahmadi Community In Pakistan: Can Pakistan Unlearn What It Has Learnt Over Decades?
Syed Kamran Hashmi

They wanted to live as a minority, take the insults, experience what people from smaller communities go through, and face the humiliation, the expletives, the religious decree awarded against their own faith. Similarly change can only come to Pakistan with action, with resistance against tyranny; the time to win a debate on social media, the time to call spades a spade without a follow up is gone. It is now the time to walk the talk, to act, to show, to rise up....

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  • so the historians who accompanied the marauders were dishonest.but bernard lewis is the very epitome of honest.your dishonesty is astounding.just as it suits you ...
    ( By hats off! )
  • there is an uncontrollable deceit and dishonesty in every comment you write.and your puny logical capacity cannot see that religious texts are full of ...
    ( By hats off! )
  • There is uncontrollable hatred for Muslims and Islam in almost every comment that you write. What is hardwired in the human brain will be reflected ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Sagacious and cogent article! Transmitting this message to the masses in Pakistan is an almost impossible task.
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Is this Asian Age report generally accepted as being factual or not?http://www.asianage.com/delhi/najeeb-ahmed-was-asked-leave-hostel-october-15-912
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • The entire wahabiyat and deobandiyat consider  celebration of mawlid Nabi to be bidat. and therefore they bomb participants of Juluse Muhammadiya
    ( By Talha@gmail.com )
  • Suicide attack at Afghan religious gathering kills over 50Dozens of people were wounded in the attack, health ministry spokesman says, which targeted top clerics ...
    ( By Ghulam Ghaus Siddiqi غلام غوث الصديقی )
  • The author is living abroad. If he lives in Pakistan he would not have written this audacious article.If he wrote, sure, he would be assassinated.
    ( By dr.A.Anburaj )
  • This article is surprising me.Thanks the author for writing this article which aims to protect minorities in Pakistan.But minorities have no hope in Pakistan. ...
    ( By dr.A.Anburaj )
  • Congrats on this auspicious occasion of Mawlid Nabi
    ( By Sarwar )
  • اسلام میں جمہوریت کا مقاماسلام کا مقصد دنیا بھر کے اچھے لوگوں کو ایک مشترکہ مقصد، ناانصافی اور تشدد کے خلاف لڑنے کے لئے ...
    ( By Abdul Moid Azhari )
  • Well put. There are crimes in which one complies through silence but then here, left's complicity is of a far higher degree. Their complicity with ...
    ( By Areeb Rizvi )
  • logic was never your forte.let me try to really make it simple enough for you.aggression has biological, evolutionary and genetic basis.men are biological, evolutionary ...
    ( By hats off! )
  • Extremely shameful and sad! If such things can happen at JNU, and in the national capital, what remains of justice and decency?
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Muslim historians accompanying Muslim conquerors said what their masters wanted to hear. Their exaggerations get quoted by pseudo-historians like Ariel and Will Durant who ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Hats Off says aggression is a biological fact but then goes on to blame monotheistic religions for it! Such a person would say anything ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
    ( By T.O. Shanavas )
  • Mr. Hats Off asked quotes from anti-Muslim authors. Let me quote from his favorite author, Bernard Lewis.
    ( By T.O. Shanavas )
  • Oxford Research Encyclopedia states:“Muslim-Jewish relations began with the emergence of Islam in 7th-century Arabia, but contacts between pre-Jewish Israelites and pre-Muslim Arabs had been ...
    ( By T.O. Shanavas )
  • just as for the fraudulent "moderates" it is the other way round. you have your evidence, others have theirs. don't whine and wheeze.the historical ...
    ( By hats off! )
  • aggression is a biological fact. aggression is an evolutionary need. aggression is a hard wired trait.that is precisely why much of religious text (especially ...
    ( By hats off! )
  • Hats Off has only two hats, one as a spreader of hate, the other as an exemplar of rudeness1
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • For Hats Off,  only those experts have credibility who say bad things about Islam! His Muslim bashing has become a jehadi-like frenzy!
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • A slap in the face of those who claim that aggression is a product of religions!
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Hats Off seems to have become the official denier of Allah on this site!
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Hats Off says, "the issue is whether if apostasy and blasphemy are crimes AT ALL. they are NOT. they are laudable acts. they are ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Arshad Alam needs to worry at this time about the impending Hindu Rashtra in India rather than what happened in 1947. Pakistanis do find themselves ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Ur essay throws some hopes on Pakistani establishment, which at the least is a houseful of chicanery; indulge on doublespeak in the hope of ...
    ( By Zafir Alam )
  • Apostasy /abandoning Islam is a severe crime and punishable with death. When Umar was on the seat of Khalifa II one of his Governor ...
    ( By dr.A.Anburaj )
  • this is not for mr. t.o shanavascan we quote other authors who entirely disagree with these "khandaani" experts?
    ( By hats off! )
  • dear mr. arshad alam, the issue is NOT whether asia bibi was WRONGLY or RIGHTLY accused of blasphemy. that is immaterial. she has EVERY ...
    ( By hats off! )
  • get back to where you belong.
    ( By hats off! )
  • please do not write op-eds if allah knows best.write something with which you do not need to do "plausible deniability".for god's sake do not ...
    ( By hats off! )
  • Human aberrations like the ones Hats Off describes are present galore in several other religions but Islam seems to be the sole target of ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • The position that Islam takes is:(2:256) Let there be no compulsion in religion: Truth stands out clear from Error: whoever rejects evil and believes ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • مسلمان ہجرت کے لئے مجبور نہیں عبدالمعید ازہری ہجرت اسلامی تاریخ کا ایک اہم اور ایسا ناگزیر پہلو ہے جو اسلامی ریاست کی بنیاد کا سبب بنا۔ ہجرت کا مطلب ...
    ( By Abdul Moeed Azhari )
  • ہم کسی کو مجبور نہیں کرتے کہ وہ میلاد النبیﷺ کو مانیں یا اسکا انعقاد کریں۔ یہ تو اپنی اپنی قسمت ہے۔ لیکن اگر ...
    ( By Syed Soharwardy )
  • Why Indian Muslims do not need to follow Extremists’ Call for Hijrat The Misconstrued Concept of Hijrat and the Position of Indian Ulema Both these articles in NAI referred ...
    ( By Rashid Samnakay )
  • The following is not for Mr. Hats Off. History of Muslim-Jewish relationship negate anti-semantism is of Earopean origin:Muslims and Jews lived together helping each other ...
    ( By T.O. Shanavas )
  • The Saudi hate towards Eid Milad un Nabi ﷺ is the root cause of extremism & intolerance among some Muslims. Those Muslims who celebrate ...
    ( By Syed Soharwardy )