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Islam and Politics ( 29 March 2021, NewAgeIslam.Com)

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Pakistani Urdu Journalism: Columns That Spew Absurdities Like 'India Has Occupied Uttar Pradesh and R&AW Has Relations with ISIS'

By New Age Islam Special Correspondent

29 March 2021

Pakistani Urdu newspapers publish dozens of columns every day. These columns are written on a wide range of topics but one thing is common in all the columns. They are written impromptu without any proper research. The so-called columnists write even on the topics they do not have any specialisation in. The result is that they spread misinformation and mislead the Pakistani Urdu newspaper readers.

Another common feature of these columns is that while writing on Pakistan's political issues or on terrorism, they hold India responsible for every issue facing Pakistan. These columnists are so afraid of Taliban that they do not mention its name. Taliban, Sipah-e-Sahaba, Lashkar-e-Taiba and terrorists like Masood Azhar, Zakiur Rahman Lakhvi and others are never mentioned in Urdu newspaper reports or columns.

One such columnist is Sikander Khan Baloch. In his column published on Monday (29 March 2021) he writes about India-China conflict, terrorism and Kashmir and holds India responsible for all the problems in the region. But while doing so he exposes his paranoia about India and his poor knowledge of the geography and history of India and of South Asia. His column opens with this observation:

"Unfortunately, India is a country that does not allow its neighbours to live in peace. According to his research, India interferes with the internal affairs of Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bangladesh, Bhutan and China. However, he does not give details of the internal affairs of these countries in which India has interfered.

The Alexander of Pakistani investigative journalism writes:

"India has forcefully annexed China's Ladakh and some parts of Uttar Pradesh". He does not know that Uttar Pradesh is located at the heart of India and there is no dispute on its being part of India.

He gives another piece of valuable information that China has occupied 3400 sq. KM of India's territory.

While the world knows that Pakistan is the country that hosts a number of terrorist organisations like Lashkar-e-Taiba, Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan and terrorists like Hafiz Sayeed, Masood Azhar, Zakiur Rahman Lakhvi, Tahawwur Rana and others, the columnist Sikander Khan Baloch writes:

"India has adopted terrorism as part of state policy and Pakistani is its main target. The most gullible country for India is Afghanistan where it spreads terrorism. India has taken Afghanistan into confidence and invested more than 3 billion dollars there. In return India has opened 16 consulates along Pakistan border. These consulates are nurseries of terrorism where Pakistani youth from Balochistan and FATA are lured with money and given training in terrorist activities and provided weapons. After that they are sent to FATA and Balochistan for terrorist activities.

Sikander Baloch also writes:

"RAW is hand in glove with the ISIS."

The entire column is filled with absurdities and false information. The Alexander of Pakistani journalism, Sikander Khan Baloch unfortunately belongs to the Baloch community which has been suffering at the hand of Pakistan's government and army. His people are victimised on a regular basis. The Baloch nationalist Akbar Bugti was killed by Pakistan army. Thousands of Baloch leaders and activists have been kidnapped and murdered by the Pakistan's government agencies and army. The people of Balochistan have been a victim of exploitation. Many Baloch activists have been compelled to leave Pakistan and seek asylum in Canada and other European countries. But this Baloch is a blot on the Baloch community who chooses to turn a blind eye to the sufferings of his community at the hand of Pakistani deep state because he knows that the day he writes about the forced disappearances of Baloch people, false terror charges against Baloch youth and unemployment and poverty of Baloch cimmunity due to the injustice and exploitation by Pakistan government, he would not be able to enjoy the luxury of writing columns in Pakistan.

This Alexander of Pakistani journalism perhaps does not (because of his poor knowldge of world affairs) that Pakistan is in the Grey List of FATF only due to its involvement in and patronage of terrorism. Pakistan has sentenced its own citizen Hafiz Sayeed to 35 years of imprisonment for his involvement in terrorist cases and a Pakistani court has issued arrest warrant against another Pakistani terrorist Zakiur Rahman Lakhvi. Pakistan government has acknowledged that Jamatud Dawa complex at Muridke is a terrorist camp.

Pakistai Urdu newspapers, however, will continue to give these ignoramuses space because they have to sell anti-India sentiments and because they cannot write on Taliban, Al Qaida, Sipah-e-Sahaba, Lashkar-e-Taiba and their terrorist leaders. They can not also write on the drug mafia that has infested all the departments of Pakistan's polity. They can not even write on the extremism that is being promoted in the religious educational system of Pakistan.

Therefore, to fill the pages of their newspapers, they will continue to publish such misleading and absurd columns. After all bread and butter comes first.


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