The Most Helpless People: Pakistan
On Friday morning, a suicide bomber hit the vehicle of Wing Commander of Ghazi angers in Qayyumabad area of Karachi. On Thursday too, terrorists targeted a police bus that claimed the lives of 13 policemen and left 55 others injured. Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) proudly claimed responsibility of the attack. Shahid Ullah Shahid explained that the attack was a revenge from the law-enforcement agencies of TTP`s people. “Attacks will continue until a ceasefire is announced”, he made it clear to all. It should also be kept in mind that the attack at the police took place after the statement of the Prime Minister of Pakistan Nawaz Sharif in which he said that Taliban ensured that they would take action against the other militant groups who were involved in the recent attacks in Pakistan.
However, despite the quite strange situation in which the peace-talks and terrorist attacks are going hand in hand, our religious and political leaders are still supporting the negotiations with TTP? JUI-S` Moulana Sami-ul-Haq is on the top of the list of such people. He is truly performing the role of a guardian or teacher (Ustad) of Taliban. He, like the other members of both committees, is trying his best to convince the nation in favor of the negotiations with “Our Pakistani Muslim brothers” (Taliban) arguing that it is the only option left to avoid terrorism in the country. In fact, he has truly turned out to be the real torch bearer of talks instead of war.
However, last month, Mufti Usman Yar Khan, the Secretary General of Jamiat Ulema Isalam (Sami-ul Haq group), was killed in Karachi. The JUI-S leadership including Moulana Samiual Haq strongly condemned the killing and demanded the government to bring the killers to justice. Not only this, but also they gave the strike call against the incident that clearly indicated how much pain or grief they felt on the killing.
Here, the question is, why did Moulana Samiul Haq not advise his party to go for a peace talk with the killers as with Taliban? How strange it is that on the murder of one person (Moualana Usman Yar), JUI-S made the demand to bring the culprits to justice, but on the murders of more than 50,000 people, it is preaching for the need of peace talks with killers (Taliban)?Perhaps, either the blood of JUI-S` leader is more important than the ones of over 50,000 common Pakistani Muslims or possibly the killer of Usman Yar has never been the “student” of Molana Samiul-Haq in Madrasa-e-Haqqaniya at Akora Khatak. What else should it be called, if not double standard?
Unfortunately, this is not the first time the common people of the country are facing such discrimination by the hands of religious parties. For decades, our establishment and the religious parties have been misusing their sentiments in the name of Islam. Whenever there was any sort of dispute between the Muslims and the non-Muslims in any part of the world, they poked their nose by calling it our own war. They held rallies, processions and sit-ins in order to show protest on it. Not only this, they did not hesitate to declare “Jehad” (holy war) as obligatory onto the Pakistani Muslims. Palestine, Chechnya, Afghanistan and Kashmir are the most relevant examples in this context. Thousands of people, especially young-men were brain-washed and transported in order to help out “Our Muslim brothers” abroad.
All these protests and the declaration of “Jehad” were against the oppression on the Muslims who were outside Pakistan. But, unfortunately, as far as the Taliban`s oppression on the Pakistani Muslims is concerned, there is no protest, no rallies, no sit-ins and no declaration of “Jehad” against the TTP terrorists.
5th of February is an official holiday in Pakistan. This holiday is commonly known as the Kashmir Day that Pakistan observes every year in order to express its allegiance with the people of occupied Kashmir. In this context, we cannot ignore the fact that these were the religious parties especially including Jamat-e-Islami which had been calling strikes on 5th of February every year to highlight the oppression on Kashmiris by the Indian Army. 5th February strikes were so frequently called in the country without any break that the government of Pakistan, led by Nawaz Sharif, made this as a national strike day named “Kashmir Day”.
But, pity the Pakistani nation, which, despite having lost thousands of lives in the TTP`s terrorist attacks, is still waiting for any protests rallies, processions or sit-ins on the oppression of Taliban nor have they seen any especial day declared by the government to express solidarity with the victims and also to condemn the TTP`s killers.
Similarly, Pakistan lost its bigger part in 1971 after the military operation in the former East Pakistan. The Justice Hamud-ur-Rehman Commission report raised very serious questions on the role of the military operations in former East Pakistan. The question is, did any of the religious scholars or political parties ask the Pakistan army for cease fire against “Our own Pakistani Muslim brothers (Bengali Muslims)? Did they ever express so much seriousness and perform efforts for any peace-talks with the Muslims of East Pakistan like the ones for pleading the case of Taliban?
Truly speaking, if they had struggled in the same way, we would be having the united Pakistan now. But, very unfortunately, not speaking of asking the government or army to stop its war there, even armed groups were formed by Jamat-e-Islami in the name of Al-shams and Al-Badar which were sent there to fight war on behalf of the West Pakistan. However, now, instead of forming and sending their armed groups against Taliban terrorists in order to provide protection to the common people, our religious leaders are giving “sleeping pills” to the nation arguing it is not our war, and that Taliban are our own Muslim brothers?? What the hypocrisy it is with the people of Pakistan? Why has the Pakistani nation been left in lurch alone for becoming the victim of terrorism?
The world knows that after the 911 attacks, USA made very aggressive decision and announced to conduct preemptive attacks anywhere in the world in order to counter the upcoming terrorist attacks. Although it was a very controversial decision, yet the American government stood by it for the sake of protecting its people. But, unfortunately, in our country, instead of making preemptive attacks, apparently TTP and its sub-groups have been let loose to target whoever they want and however in our big cities.
One of the most important aspects of the prevailing scenario is that Taliban term their terrorist attacks as reaction or revenge of the killings of their members whether in drone attacks or by law-enforcement agencies. Though it is surely an inhuman act, yet it shows the commitment and loyalty of terrorists to their people. But, how unfortunate the Pakistani victims are who have still failed to witness such commitment and loyalty from their government as well as the security forces against the mass killers of the Pakistanis.
Taking into account all these bitter facts, can we expect anything positive from the so-called “peace-talks” with TTP in the scenario where most of the stake holders directly or indirectly want an agreement or pact with Taliban any cost? When logically no, then who would speak for grievances of the common people who are not only the victims, but also disagree to the Taliban`s philosophy of Islam? Who would plead their case? Is there anyone in the country who has enough courage to dare to resist against all that? Although MQM`s chief Altaf Hussain, despite the much pressure on him and his party, has been raising his voice against all that on behalf of the people, but if the level of pressure is increased more against him, will there be anyone else who can play this bold role and resist against handing over Pakistan to TTP? At least I do not find any. May God save the helpless people of Pakistan!