Source: Nayyar Afaq/Unknown
Happy Pakistan Day. The Day of the Green and, yes, even the White.
Of talking about Quaid-e-Azam and Allama Iqbal and their delusional visions that brought about a humanitarian disaster. A lab with some 180 million lab rats, and I am not even counting those which have passed away.
I don’t want to be a cynic today, though there are few better other occasions. I love the idea of Pakistan Day. But that’s not what I am talking about here. I want to talk about our conservative ideals.
This addresses Pakistanis primarily. Pakistani Muslims and Pakistani Muslim Nationalists.
Those who are proud of their infallible ideology which can never possibly fail when it comes to righteousness and how people should be treated.
The ones with an all-encompassing code of life that covers just about every area of life with great justice and peace.
The ones who have presented the best way to the world to treat those who refrain from believing in their faith even though residing in their domain.
I want them to recall what happened on the fateful days from late February to June 2002 in the Indian state of Gujarat that resulted in the death of 790 Muslims and 254 Hindus as per the official figures.
I want them to recall Muslims houses burned by Hindu mobs there with little or no intervention from the police. And I want them to recall how they and all of us had reacted to that, criticizing the Indian state’s failure to protect the minority religious group.
Thankfully not with such drastic consequences, but equally horrifyingly, a mob of angry and pious Muslims, most of them young boys apparently, set fire to the houses and possessions of poor Christians living in Badami Bagh, downtown Lahore because one of their boys was said to have blasphemed against the Prophet.
Source: Express Tribune
There is something common between a few of incidents in the Gujarat riots and the Joseph Colony riots in Lahore.
The police made no attempt to save the victims.
But then again, this is usually the case historically in the subcontinent. Isn’t it?
Has not Shahbaz Sharif been as complicit as Narendra Modi in his handling of the affair?
Gojra riots and Gujrat riots. Even the letters try hard to separate them.
Yes, is Shahbaz Sharif Pakistan’s Narendra Modi?
Maybe not, not for us to decide maybe and who cares, but what about the role of Punjab police, who are supposed to protect the defenseless Christians?
Oh well, but why complain about it. The only difference however was that Muslims in India are strong enough to fight back against the Hindu mobs, or at least have been known to. Since they have mobs of their own attacking Hindus too.
Though it is actually ridiculously unfair to even come close to compare Gujarat riots to the Joseph Colony incident on so many levels, but the degree of offense can only be made out by humanistic and secular eyes. We are dealing with the absurd and ridiculous over here .
The riots in Gujarat sparked after Muslims set a train containing Hindu pilgrims on fire, after a Muslim girl’s kidnap, while others say it was an orchestrated conspiracy. But neither did the Pakistani Christians do anything as wrong, or that is at least what anyone not a fervent Muslim would think, nor are they strong enough to have even the remotest hope of responding back in anger.
Alright I don’t have to make it too long. The point is clear here.
I want the conservative Muslims of Pakistan to read it and I will try sending out that message in Urdu as well. But while keeping little more odds of staying alive, I can still send out the message to the one or two of the Pakistani Muslim conservatives Pakistani Muslims who happen to stumble upon this blog.
The Pakistani Muslims who would criticize Indian Hindu extremists for harming Muslims would tolerate incidents like Joseph Colony and Gojra riots at home, being as complicit and as protective of the culprits as their similar adversaries across the border.
To my eyes, there is hardly any difference between the two, which is why they hate each other so. And that is the ultimate insult to them.
Source: Mohsin Raza/Reuters
But make no mistake about what happened in Joseph Colony. Make no mistake about its horrors and the misery of having your home attacked and your possession and memories burned to ashes and dust.
Home lost, families forced to live under tents or in indefinitely temporary camps, as was or would have been the case with some rendered homeless in Gujarat.
Let it be for possessing the land or whatever political crimes may be the reason behind this incident, the fact remains that the masses acted on their religious beliefs, and we love to protect that part of our faith.
And oh, how terrible this tragedy has been, and how wrong it was and there were only a handful of people doing it and how it should not have happened, would be the answers we have to it. But we wouldn’t want to face what is causing this behavior over and over again. That’s all there is to this matter and nothing more.
Good and evil do not matter anymore.
The key here is not to emphasize how atrocious the Joseph Colony tragedy is, but to tell Pakistani Muslim Conservatives how idiotic they are.
Filed under: Commentary | Tagged: arson, Badami Bagh, blasphemy, Christians, code of life, conservatives, death, education, extremism, fire, fundamentalism, Gojra, Gujarat riots, Hindu, homeless, ideology, Joseph Colony, justice, Lahore, life, mob, Muslims, Narendra Modi, nationalists, Pakistan, Pakistan Day, Peace, police, politics, possessions, Punjab, religion, religion of peace, riot, Secularism, Shahbaz Sharif, violence | 1 Comment »