SHAME: “Progressive” 18th Amendment Ends Forever The Possibility Of A Non-Muslim Prime Minister!

By Yasser Latif Hamdani

I know the self styled “progressives” hate it when I bring up Pakistan’s founding father but here I am forced to do so again:

Even now there are some States in existence where there are discriminations made and bars imposed against a particular class. Thank God, we are not starting in those days. We are starting in the days where there is no discrimination, no distinction between one community and another, no discrimination between one caste or creed and another. We are starting with this fundamental principle that we are all citizens and equal citizens of one State. – Mahomed Ali Jinnah,  The Founder of Pakistan

Sadly –  Modern Pakistan is one of those states Jinnah warned against!  If we started with this fundamental principle,  well we have been moving backwards for over 63 years now.

All the excitement has gone down the drain.   For all the hoopla about making Pakistan a progressive state,  the PPP-ANP-MQM-PML(N) efforts have laid an egg.   And it is stinking.  One could barely justify closing the office of President to Non-Muslims by claiming that it was a symbolic office in a real parliamentary democracy  (when it was first introduced in the 1956 constitution, this was the argument put forth) but to close the door for premiership and make it exclusive for a religious community- that is downright undemocratic.

The thesis –  imposed on us by ethno-nationalists – is that by strengthening ethno-nationalists and then seeking a compromise we may achieve a viable Pakistani state.   Untill recently I was naive enough to believe this ridiculous proposition.  

PPP is a left of center liberal democratic party.   ANP calls itself secular.   To be fair ANP did file a note of reiteration for the office of president not prime minister.   In other words after agreeing to sign the constitutional amendment,  ANP also said “oh btw we would have liked to open up the office of president to Non-Muslims”.    Be that as it may,  ANP was more concerned about Khyber Pakthunkhwa to notice when the office of the Prime Minister was closed to Non-Muslims as it was in Bhutto’s 1973 constitution.

Over time,  the door to PM’s office was opened up to Non-Muslims inadvertently after PM’s office had been reduced in stature post-Bhutto even though paradoxically the oath remained that of a Muslim but that was a bridge everyone thought would be crossed once we got to it.   However as the powers have been transferred back to the Prime Minister, how could this be allowed to be even theoretically open to Non-Muslims?   Shame on us for even thinking that in 21st century perhaps we shall attempt under a left leaning “progressive” coalition to move towards the kind of state that did not have bars against citizens.

In 1973 too PPP and ANP’s forerunner NAP “gifted” us a constitution which introduced Islam as the state religion and tried to blend Islam with democracy.   This was ofcourse keeping with the horrible tradition set by Liaqat Ali Khan’s Objectives Resolution in 1949.   But even with the Objectives Resolution,  Liaqat Ali Khan clearly and consistently declared that the state so envisaged would not create bars against Non-Muslims for the offices of the head of state and government.   

PPP claimed that it was undoing Zia ul Haq’s amendments.   Ironically all the Islamic content of Zia’s Islamizing amendments  has been retained in the constitution.  Not even the ridiculous clauses in dreaded articles 62 and 63 have been amended to purge these of references to sagacity and being amin.   The reason why this has happened is precisely because of the “consensus”.   Since ANP etc are not really concerned about secularism or any of the ideals they claim to uphold and PPP has always been more concerned with “consensus building” instead of doing the right thing damn it,    any and all attempts to change the constitution to make more liberal, progressive and egalitarian for all citizens of Pakistan were vetoed and the institutionalized role of religion persists.

Shame on every leader and his cronies who is party to this hogwash  called the 18th Amendment.   Liars, Crooks, Cranks And Madmen (and women), one and all.

Chalay chalo kay woh manzil abhi nahin ayee

64 Comments

Filed under Constitution, Democracy, Jinnah's Pakistan, Pakistan, People's Pakistan, Religion, secular Pakistan, Yusuf Raza Gillani

64 responses to “SHAME: “Progressive” 18th Amendment Ends Forever The Possibility Of A Non-Muslim Prime Minister!

  1. Neel

    This however will not stop the Pakistanis from demanding that Indian must stick to its secular character and treat the muslims as equal.

  2. Nusrat Pasha

    Dear Y. L. Hamdani,

    A very well-written, candid and straightforward article. Commendable.

    In my opinion, the real issue is not whether Pakistani non-Muslims are eligible for the offices of President and Prime Minister or not. The real issue is that is any kind of discrimination at state level, on the basis of religion, even minimally rational.

    Our political leadership, both civilian and military, has conveniently been doing away with the sterling principles of equality and secular statecraft – principles that were promised to Pakistanis by Quaid-e Azam. The Quaid’s will to the nation he founded was unceremoniously disregarded by the nation and its successive leaders. Allow me to present 2 quotes of Jinnah:

    1: “…..no distinction between one community and another, no discrimination between one caste or creed and another. We are starting with this fundamental principle that we are all citizens and Equal citizens of One State…..” [Presidential Address to the first Constituent Assembly of Pakistan, 11 August 1947]

    2: “…..You may belong to any religion or caste or creed. That has nothing to do with the business of the State…..” [Presidential address to the first Constituent Assembly of Pakistan, Karachi, 11 August 1947]

    Now, with reference to these 2 quotes, let us dispassionately examine what Quaid-e Azam wanted from those who succeeded him.

    1. “..no distinction between one community and another..”
    2. “..equal citizens of one state..”
    3. “..[religion having] nothing to do with the business of the state..”

    A single word for these above 3 principles is “secularism”.

    I am neither despondent nor pessimistic. I believe that this nation still has hope – but only if it succeeds in reverting to the will of its Founder.

  3. fair mind

    @YLH

    I’m surprised to see why are you’re shocked and angry at 18th amendment, for not allowing non-Muslims in Pakistan to become President and Prime Minister of the country. This 1973 constitution does NOT accept, consider and declare its citizens a Muslim, who holds the same belief that Pakistan’s president and prime minister profess in their oaths to the respective offices. This declaration of their belief is part of Pakistan’s constitution. See below:

    Oath of office of The President:
    President
    [Article 42]
    (In the name of Allah, the most Beneficent, the most Merciful.)
    I, ____________, do solemnly swear that I am a Muslim and believe in the Unity and Oneness of Almighty Allah, the Books of Allah, the Holy Quran being the last of them, the Prophethood of Muhammad (peace be upon him) as the last of the Prophets and that there can be no Prophet after him, the Day of Judgment, and all the requirements and teachings of the Holy Quran and Sunnah:

    Oath of office of The Prime Minister:
    Prime Minister
    [Article 91( 4)]

    (In the name of Allah, the most Beneficent, the most Merciful.)
    I, ____________, do swear solemnly that l am a Muslim and believe in the Unity and Oneness of Almighty Allah, the Books of Allah, the Holy Quran being the last of them, the Prophethood of Muhammad (peace be upon him) as the last of the Prophets and that there can be no Prophet after him, the Day of Judgment, and all the requirements and teachings of the Holy Quran and Sunnah:

  4. yasserlatifhamdani

    Dear Fair mind,

    As I explained above …the omission of the word “muslim” since 1973 opened the theoretical possibility of a non-Muslim PM despite the oath. In other words if a non-Muslim would be elected, it would open a new scenario where legislative omission could be argued.

    The point is that this amendment has closed even that door.

    But what has the amendment achieved? Has it undone any of Zia’s clauses pertaining to Islam’s role?

  5. fair mind

    @YLH sahib:
    “But what has the amendment achieved?”

    I think, this amendment has achieved one thing: It has continued to give right to its citizens to NOT to accept his fellow citizen a Muslim, (regardless of the fact that he profess the same belief that country’s President and Prime Minister profess). Thus it has encouraged its citizens to NOT be morally and religiously responsible for protection of fellow citizens property, life and honor. It has been reinforced by the constitution to steal, loot, kill and dishonor fellow citizens. Pakistan’s citizens are fulfilling their “duty” by robbing, stealing, abusing, killing and dishonoring their fellow citizens. Every citizen of Pakistan is doing this to every other citizen of Pakistan.

  6. Rabia

    ylh do you mean to say that article 91(2) is being reverted to its pre-1985 status?

    if that’s true, that is really terrible.

    BTW do you have access to the full text of the amendment and if so would you be able to post it on PTH?

  7. We are trying to find the full text but it has not been made public yet.
    YLH – whilst this omission is condemnable, the major triumph of political parties on achieving consensus after 37 years is remarkable. Issues of provincial autonomy etc have been taken far beyond the scope of the original 1973 document.
    Let us be cogizant of the bigger picture and raise issues and present critiques from the citizens’ perspective as these amendments are deliberated and finalised.

  8. Rabia

    here it is (someone just posted it on pakistaniat.com)

    http://www.na.gov.pk/p_release_images/report_const itutional_18th_amend_bill2010_020410.pdf

    if you check page 93 you can see that YLH is correct. I agree with him that it’s really shameful.

  9. yasserlatifhamdani

    Rabia, Raza bhai,

    The full text can be found on http://www.na.gov.pk under Report on 18th Amendment…. the entire Bill and notices of reiteration are also found there.

    Raza bhai,

    With the federal legislative list being expanded to include certain key subjects, provincial autonomy is probably also a mask. Do you think the centre would give up… electricity, procedure etc?

    The whole 18th Amendment is an exercise in futility and the problem with Pakistan is the horrible document that ZAB and his coterie presided over in 1973.

    This kind of Consensus is over-rated and in this case over-projected… real consensus would have been to seek view and approval of all cross sections of society…. how many minority members were part of this process Raza bhai?

    This Consensus was the Majority’s Consensus. The whole process if flawed. It was flawed when Bhutto made it… do you think people who voted for Bhutto in the 1970 elections and not for Maududi and Tufail… voted for Islam as a state religion?

    Pakistan needs a new constitution… a constitution on rational and truly democratic lines. It cannot afford this confusion of tyranny of the majority with democracy any more.

  10. banjara286

    in fairness, i believe the pakistani society is not ready at this time for a non-muslim head of state. in this sense the constitutional provisions reflect the wishes of a majority of pakistanis. the object of shame, if that is what u feel is called for, should be the majority of the people of pakistan, not a piece of paper which expresses their wishes.

  11. Majumdar

    Err… is this not beating a dead horse. Minorities barely number 3% of Pak’s population, (4% if in deference to Rashid mian aka Fairmind’s sensitivities, we were to lump together Mirzaees with Muslims) and there is little probability that they will get elected anyway as Banjara bhai says.

    Better to work to remove prejudices and other bars, if any, against them. Work gradually.

    Regards

  12. yasserlatifhamdani

    Majumdar,

    It is not actually. It is about taking an unnecessary step backwards.

    Bhagwandas became a very powerful justice and then the chairman of public service commission. So 3 percent is not the issue. And minorities are grossly underreported..
    People said Pakistan was not ready for a woman PM either …

    Theoretically …I have always wondered if closing presidential door for non-Muslim also meant closing Chairman Senate’s office as well?

    Still in a parliamentary democracy president is symbolic … It is the PM that matters.

  13. Majumdar

    I am not clear on one thing. Did the Constt as it exist b4 allow or disallow explicitly non-Muslims from becoming PM. And assuming that the previous Constt did allow non-Ms to become PMs, is there some specific provision which closes the door?

    Regards

  14. yasserlatifhamdani

    It did not explicitly disallow a non-Muslim from becoming PM. The oath as pointed out above was that of a Muslim but by omitting the word Muslim member, the door was flung open for Non-Muslims. Since it happened through Zia’s amendment one can only assume it was done to lower the stature of the office of PM.

    Nevertheless legally it left open the possibility.

  15. yasserlatifhamdani

    …And yes now it specifically disallows a non-Muslim from becoming the PM.

    Read page 93 of the link above.

  16. Majumdar

    Clause 91, para 3 right.

    Thanks.

    Regards

  17. muhammad armaan

    it is a pity that such discussions don’t take place on the tv channels to which most of our population looks for forming their opinions.Pakteahouse website is visited by a miniscule amount and that too we are preaching to the converted.Change can only come when the intolerant,bigoted and insular masses get exposure to new opinions and ways of thinking.Right now what they have exposure to are endless,mindless televangelists spewing hate,bigotry and misogyny which is being lapped up by the majority population.
    Why does not pakteahouse have a facebook page???????? It will help in spreading the word to a much larger audience.Right now the only thing is subscribe by email!!!

  18. Nusrat Pasha

    yasserlatifhamdani,

    “…..Pakistan needs a new constitution…..”

    Good suggestion. For the Preamble, the Objectives Resolution should be replaced by the “11th August 1947 Presidential Address of Quaid-e Azam to the 1st Consituent Assembly of Pakistan”. This entire text of this address – verbatim – would serve both as a perfect Preamble to the Constitution, as well as a permanent reminder to the Legislature, Judiciary, Executive and People of Pakistan.

  19. Oracle

    Why a non-Muslim be allowed to be the Prime Minister of Pakistan?

    Who doesn’t believe in the finality of Prophet (PBUH) should be happy to be the citizens of the country.

    Even US doesn’t allow non-Christians to be the President. Why make an exception in Pakistan? If the author wants to be the Prime Minister then he’d become a Muslim.

  20. Bin Ismail

    Oracle,

    The issue at hand, if I may respectfully point out, is not whether a non-Muslim Pakistani seeks the office of the PM or not. The issue is that is such a rule even rational in the first place. The other aspect worthy of examination is that is the present Constitution of Pakistan in line with the 11th August ’47 speech of the Founder of Pakistan, or have we swayed away.

    Regards.

  21. Oracle

    Bin Ismail,

    In theory yes if Pakistan were a multi-religious country. Pakistan is an Islamic Republic.

    Secondly the ehemmiat of 11 August 1947 speech is over-stretched. Islam, Shari’a supersedes all speeches of Jinnah or Iqbal. If Pakistan was made non-Muslims then there’s no need for partition. Talk of secular secular Pakistan is meaningless. Islam first and last, Alhamdolillah.

  22. yasserlatifhamdani

    Oracle,

    The US constitution does not have a bar against any non-Christian becoming the president of the US.

  23. Bin Ismail

    Oracle,

    If Pakistan is not a multi-religious country, the topic of our discussion should be removal of the “white” on our flag, which represents the non-Muslim Pakistanis.

    Anyway, even if as you contend, Pakistan is not a multi-religious country, you may be aware of the fact that it still does happen to be a multi-sectarian country. There are Barelvi Sunnis, Deobandi Sunnis, Ahl-e Hadees, Ahl-e Quran, Isna Asharis, Dawoodis, Ismailis etc, etc. These are the major divisions, which in turn have several sub-divisions. Then, for instance even among the Sunni scholars, there are various interpretations of the Sharia.

    Then, on the plane of Fiqah or Jurisprudence, there are 5 leading schools – the Hanafi, shaafi’i, Hanbali, Maaliki and the Jaafari school.

    When you bring Religion into matters of the State, Religion becomes directly involved in law-making as well as interpretation of the law. There is no single, unanimous and undisputed interpretation of the Sharia, to which adherents of all sects would willingly subscribe.

    If only, one is prepared to undertake the excruciatingly agonizing exercise of studying the religious edicts or Fatwas of the ulema of one sect of Muslims regarding other sects, it will become lucidly obvious that a State Religion should, in all sanity, not even be considered as an option. The standard Sunni fatwa regarding the Shias is that they are kafirs and outside the bounds of Islam. The standard Shia fatwa about the Sunnis is along similar lines. Within the Sunnis, the Deobandis declare the Barelvis kafir and the Barelvi ulema are quite certain about the kufr of the Deobandis. The Ahl-e Hadees consider the Ahl-e Quran as kafirs and the Ahl-e Quran have the same opinion about the Ahl-e Hadees. In this scenario, would it make any sense to even think about a State Religion? Doing so, would mean to drag in all this mutual friction and contradiction into the business of the State.

  24. yasserlatifhamdani

    Pakistan has close to 6 million Christians. That is double the population of New Zealand.

    Pakistan has close to 3 million Hindus.

    Pakistan’s minority population outweighs the entire population of Israel and Palestine combined.

  25. Bin Ismail

    This is interesting. The number of Pakistani Christians is twice the population of New Zealand. The number of Pakistani Hindus is twice the population of Gambia. Yet there is a perception that Pakistan is not a multi-religious country. The population of individual religious minorities in Pakistan outnumbers entire nations of the world and yet we are not a multi-religious country. This is truly interesting.

  26. If there was an ambiguity in the matter regarding religion for the Premier…It does not mean it could have provided a chance for any party to appoint a non muslim for the post…As Pakistan in the last decades have flipped downward in this regard…
    The PPP led ruling alliance was outweight by the muslimh leagues and others in the committee.I agree Raza that the committee has achieved a lot in other grounds and it should be appreciated not to chant slogans of shame etc etc. on them….
    For being not a constitutional expert I think in the present circumstances it is more important to raise voice for the victims of Gojra who still are waiting for the justice, raise voice against the persecution of Ahmedi community and killing of the Doctors and other persons from the same community, Killing of the Shias at FATA, adjacent areas and all the big cities and depriving them of the basic necessities, blocking the transport and killing the drivers who pick goods to their areas.

  27. yasserlatifhamdani

    I am a PPP voter but Aliarqam is just being economical with the truth.

    What Muslim League was there in 1973 when the same clause – as being introduced now- was made part of the constitution?
    What Muslim League was there when Ahmadis were declared Non-Muslim?

    Ironically in 1953 it was a Muslim League government which refused to declare Ahmadis non-Muslim.

    In 1974 it was PPP who did so.

    In 1956 (the only constitution prepared by a Muslim League govt) allowed unambiguously for a Non-confessional prime minister.

    So let us accept some fundamental truths …self styled progressives and leftists always persecute religious minorities on the basis of majoritarianism.

  28. yasserlatifhamdani

    The naqli Leagues sitting in the assembly are not indicative of any real ideological position.

    Most of the naqli leaguers are the children of erstwhile Unionists.

  29. Nusrat Pasha

    An honest confession would be that we, as a nation, were a sinful lot even in 1947. The subsequent six decades have hardly seen us evolve into saints. The only difference caused and produced by attaching the prefix of “Islamic” before Republic of Pakistan, is that our sins have been validated, our crimes glorified and our wrongdoings sanctified – nothing beyond this. All sorts of injustices are done in the name of Islam. Removing this undeserved prefix could actually be a service to Islam.

    In the name of Islam, let us spare the name of Islam.

  30. Mustafa Shaban

    @Bin Ismail: I disagree with you on the intersectarian fatwa issue. It is only extremist sunnis that consider shia kafir and extremist shia that consider sunni kafir and so on. Majority of muslim scholars and people see each other as muslim brothers. Its just that the scholars that dont are very loud which is why they look like majority. It is against Islam, Quran and Sunnah to call muslim brother kafir. Whoever does so is not muslim. We have to act like one Ummah. Hadhrat Ali (A.S) became furious when people started to suggest divide.

    Also regarding instituing Islam as part of State, despite sectarian differences will still be able to apply. There are many similarities betwenn the different schools of thought. Those can be made into law, ban on pork, alchohol, lying, stealing etc. There are small differences betwen the schools of thought. These can be dealt with by either having different courts for different sects or by just having the courts judge each muslim by thier own sectarian rules. This can be organized especially in our advanced age without any tensions in between.

    There are many examples of people of different religions and sects coexisting peacefully and following thier own laws.

  31. fair mind

    @Oracle
    “Even US doesn’t allow non-Christians to be the President.”

    This is NOT true. If that was the case then an open Jew Sen. Joe Libermann would have not run in Democratic part primaries for office of President of US in 2004.

  32. fair mind

    @Mustafa Shaban:
    “It is against Islam, Quran and Sunnah to call muslim brother kafir. ”

    I HOPE you have the same opinion about 2nd Costitutional amendment in Pakistan’s 1973 constitution.

    “Whoever does so is not muslim.”

    Would you like to include in your classification, people like Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto (who became victim of injustice today, 31 years ago. The same injustice in society whose foundation was laid by him in 1974) and all religious + political members in Pakistan National Assembly in 1974?

    “We have to act like one Ummah.”
    Holy Quran calls entire humanity (including Jews, Christians, Hindus, Bhuddist…) ‘One Ummah’.

  33. fair mind

    For information of Mustafa Shaban:

    When Z.A.Bhutto was on trial he was accused of being a “Muslim in name only”. This accusation was levelled by the Lahore High Court Judgment against him of March 1978. Bhutto was very bitter about this, as he has himself stated in his book “If I am assassinated” which you can download easily from the website:

    I also have the following reference from the time when he appealed against his death sentence to the Supreme Court:
    “He [Bhutto] said that it was an acknowledged principle that the person who recites the Kalima is a Muslim, and no one has the right to call him a non-Muslim. Citing an instance, chairman [of the People’s Party] Bhutto said that Abu Sufyan, a great enemy of the Holy Prophet, was brought to him. He claimed to have recited the Kalima, but the Holy Prophet’s Companions argued that he had not done it with his heart, and they wanted to kill him. But the Holy Prophet said that as he had recited the Kalima, he was now a Muslim, and could not be harmed.”
    (Urdu Daily Masawat, Lahore, Wednesday 20 December 1978, front page, column 1)

    He said this in reply to the accusation that he was “a Muslim in name only”.
    So before the end of his life Bhutto discovered the true definition of a Muslim and himself presented it in court.

  34. Israr

    Read with heavy heart on the NA website of Pakistan.;
    “You may belong to any religion or caste or creed — that has nothing to do with the business of the State (Hear, hear).”

    Pak Govt. should be able to do one easy thing, remove Founder of the nation speech from its webiste and find appropriate one from Moudoodi’s.

  35. OMLK

    The 18th amendement is indeed a significant political develoment, and one that should encourage democratic traditions; but here is the sad truth. The politicians once again did not have the guts to stand up to the Mullahs and also do away with the amendments (incuding those by a dictator) that are designed to relegate minorities and women to 2nd class citizens with serious threat to thier life and well being. And I think the individual fundamental rights of a state’s citizens are far more important than the name of a province or mechanism for appointing judges. When a state writes discrimination against its own citizens into its constituion then that state loses its moral right to exist as a nation. Pakistan needs to redefine itself as a state at a very basic level; and needs to do it fast. The 18th amendment does not do that; while it had the opportunity to do so, had the politicans more guts to stand up to the Mullah. Unfortunaltey for Pakistan, that did not happen.

  36. Mansoor Khalid

    USA being the most developed country in the world has never put a ban on anyone being the president of US. We have the example of India also. Although there is a very slight chance of someone from the minority becoming a PM in Pakistan, still banning the slight possibility by constitution is not worth it.

  37. Ammar

    The 18th amendment will be instrumental in reverting the constitution to its original shape, however every secular citizens shares the dismay over constitutional discrimination of minorities. The office of Premier stands closed for minorities as the new proposed amendments bars a non-Muslim member to qualify for the office of Premier.

  38. This is something that I don’t agree with. We should be more bended towards a secular state as we have seen what extremism elements have done on our soil. The financials of the country have been drained so bad and investment has declined. We need a secular state where all have their rights. Non muslims should be given the same rights as Muslims.

  39. Bin Ismail

    @ Mustafa Shaban

    #1: “…..It is only extremist sunnis that consider shia kafir and extremist shia that consider sunni kafir and so on…..”

    It is precisely these extremist ulema who prevail over the less vocal, passive and cowardly submissive majority. Once, religion is allowed to mix with politics, it is precisely these extremists, who will reign supreme and interpret the Sharia as suits their fanaticism.

    #2: “…..It is against Islam, Quran and Sunnah to call muslim brother kafir. Whoever does so is not muslim…..”

    You see when you point this out to, say a Sunni Maulvi, who considers a Shia a kafir, he will assure you that he is not calling a Musim brother a kafir – he is only calling a kafir a kafir – as in calling a spade a spade.

    #3: “…..There are small differences betwen the schools of thought. These can be dealt with by either having different courts for different sects…..”

    Are you by any chance referring to the small differences that have contributed to big bloodshed? Are you recommending 73 courts for the 73 different sects – as if our Judiciary is not confronted with enough challenges already.

    “Iss saadgi peh kon na marr jaa’ey aye Khuda”.

  40. Mustafa Shaban

    @Bin Ismail:

    1. Absolutely not true, the majority at times may be lazy, but you cannnot say this for the new generation of people and scholars, they are very active and are already playing a role in changing mindsets. I believe we have a bright future with advanced and modern mindset regarding Islam, I see extremist and radical maulvis in decline and after a decade or 2 almost gone.

    2. And those so called ”aalims” are correct? Absolutely not, there are many so called maulvis, who preach a retarded version of Islam, spread hatred, thier only destination is hell as it is extremely damaging to the Muslim community to be divided as you can see. They are the cause for bloodshed and division and play right into the hands of zionists and other enemies of the Ummah. People will look beyond them hopefully. The level of propoganda is scary but hopefully people will see past this.

    3. Even if we do that for 2 of the biggest sects, it will be a major relief. Also you dont need 73 different courts, you just need to use technology and readily access information for each school of thought and judge accordingly. A system to account for every sect and religion is possible. You just need to be organized.

    From your talk you seem to be very pessimistic, people should be optimistic and determined. Smart people dont have the word impossible in thier dictionary. Where there is will there is way, and find the way we will. Stop complaining and start searching for solutions.

  41. PMA

    I agree with Yasser.

  42. DCMediagirl

    @Fair Mind: Joe Lieberman did not run for President of the U.S. in 2004. He was chosen by John Kerry to be his running mate.

    The qualifications one must meet to be elected president of the United States are:

    1. A natural born citizen of the United States;
    2. At least 35 years of age;
    3. have been a permanent resident in the United States for at least fourteen years

  43. fair mind

    @Mustafa Shaban

    “And those so called ”aalims” are correct? —– People will look beyond them hopefully. ”

    Who and how people will be able to decide who is correct and who is not?

    This is only possible if beside giving “aalims” chance to debate, publish their interpertations, an equal chance is provided to “THOSE” who don’t agree with “aalims” interpertations. This will become possible if Pakistan’s constitution permit the “THOSE” to present their opinion as a they want to i.e. as a Muslim.

  44. Bin Ismail

    @ Mustafa Shaban

    I truly admire your optimism. I assure you, my words stem less from pessimism, and more from realism. We should all be optimistic – realistically optimistic.

    You’ve said: “…..Stop complaining and start searching for solutions…..” Nobody’s complaining – we’re only analyzing. If someone’s analysis, happens to at variance with yours, it is not called complaint, its known as “difference of opinion”. As for solutions, must we reinvent the wheel? Here’s a solution: “….Religion should not be allowed to come into Politics….Religion is merely a matter between man and God”.[Jinnah, Address to the Central Legislative Assembly, 7 February 1935]

  45. Mustafa Shaban

    @Bin Ismail: My apologies, didnt mean it in that way, its just that I hear a lot of people talking about problems and how hard they are to dal with rather than solutions. I was not exactly directing it towards you.

    @fair mind: Let me put it this way. Some scholars make Islam look extremely complicated and hard to understand and create confusion. However Islam is a very easy religion and can be put very simply into an easy read 75-100 page book. When you study Islam, you realize you dont have to study it for very long to understand it, only a small period of study wil do. I think it not hard for people to understnd who is right and who is not. The good aalims who are propogating the real Islam are very popular. You have scholars from both Sunni and Shia sect who are extremely popular. Ahmed Deedat, Sheikh Hamza Yousuf, Sheikh Jehad Ismail, Ammar Nakshawani, Sheikh Hassanain Rajabali, and many others. The extremist scholars are popular to a certain extent but thier popularity is dying. Also let us not underestimate people, even uneducated people. People are nowadayz very vigilante and intellegent, people can unify on opinions and decide which points of view they prefer. People come together as a majority when it comes to truth and the best ideas when they are put forward. This is how it works in Islamic world. The internet is a good tool to spread variety of ideas.

    People who are interested have a wide variety of sourcs and can view the ideas of countless different scholars both good and bad and decide for themselvs, hence the decline in extremism and fundamentalism in the Islamic world despite the problems. So all scholars have good opportunities to put forth thier point of view.

    The reason why it has taken people so much time to reach to this point is due to the lack of willpower to learn Islam and understand it, there is also social and political laziness among the older generation who accept and succumb to the status quo. The young generation however are very active and understand things a lot better which is why I am so optimistic about future. I dont see why we should be so pessimistic, things are changin very fast.

  46. fair mind

    @Mustafa Shaban:
    “However Islam is a very easy religion and can be put very simply into an easy read 75-100 page book.”

    I disagree with you. I think Islam is much easier religion than what you think. Islam can be put in ONE SENTENSE:
    ‘Do the good things, and don’t do the bad things’. (How is that!)

    “The good aalims who are propogating the real Islam are very popular. You have scholars from both Sunni and Shia sect who are extremely popular. Ahmed Deedat, Sheikh Hamza Yousuf, Sheikh Jehad Ismail, Ammar Nakshawani, Sheikh Hassanain Rajabali, and many others.”

    I have personal information about TWO scholars you mentioned. Unfortunately because of Mullah-Mafia in Muslim and non-Muslim world they can not say what they say in private, and cannot mention sources of Islamic literature they extensively benefit from. I’m talking about Ahmed Deedat (late) and Hamza Yusuf. As a result people like you are not able to take advantage of those sources of Islamic knowledge. Muslims block themselves from learning, just because they believe 2nd amendment to Pakistan’s 1973 constitution is PART OF HOLY QURAN.

  47. Khullat

    Let the state restrict its interest to providing security to the citizens, to providing jobs,to promoting education, to providing electricity, gas and water, to providing prompt and uncorrupted justice, to providing a cleaner, healthier and greener environment, to building the infrastructure, to consolidating the economy and to improving the image of the country on the global stage.

    As for religion, Allah will take care of it. He always has. If the state stops meddling in His business, I’m sure He’ll help us out of the mess we’ve created by mixing Religion and Politics.

  48. Mustafa Shaban

    @fair mind: I dont believe this Mullah Mafia will last long, that is why I am optimistic.

  49. YLH

    I apologize for the use of French in following:

    Earlier today a Maududian Dog barked on this board.

    He told everyone who wants to Pakistan to be an inclusive just society as envisaged by Jinnah … to go to India and live there … because Pakistan was an ideological state.

    The problem with this is … that Maududians have no locus standi telling us anything….especially whose families sacrificed for this country.

    Maududians were dogged opponents of the creation of Pakistan. We would like to throw Maududians where they belong but these dogs have hijacked this country…. but don’t worry… with time, with democracy the ultimate victory shall be of the true patriots of this country…

    (With apologies to any dog-owners who are incensed by the comparison of dogs with Maududians).

    -YLH

  50. Khullat

    In my humble opinion, the following two points should be considered:

    1. It is most certainly not within the scope of rationality for any human to issue a judgement on the spiritual status of another. I for one, am entirely incapable of peeping into the heart of someone to discern his/her spiritual status.

    2. The Lord of Judgement, is Allah – not man. I suppose this is one issue on which all religions agree. Muslims believe that Allah alone is the “Maalik-e-yaumid-deen” or Master of the day of Judgement. Jews and Christians believe Yahweh to be the Final Judge and Hindus believe this role to belong to Parmeshwar. Only someone with the unfulfilled desire of playing God, would want to assume this role. Muslims, moreover, are required to recite Sura Fatiha, in which this attribute of Allah is mentioned, in every single rakat of the prayers. How many more reminders are needed?

  51. Khullat

    @fair mind

    You said: “Muslims block themselves from learning, just because they believe 2nd amendment to Pakistan’s 1973 constitution is PART OF HOLY QURAN.”

    Not just the 2nd Amendment, but all the sacred words of all allamas, maulanas, maulvis and mullahs are considered as Divinely revealed and immune to qustioning.

    I am of the opinion that the Article 2 of the Constitution serves the purpose of the foundations of a theocratic Pakistan “to be ruled by priests with a divine mission”.

    Let us not ungratefully forsake these words of Quaid-e Azam:

    “In any case Pakistan is NOT going to be a theocratic State – to be ruled by priests with a divine mission. We have many non-Muslims – Hindus, Christians and Parsis – but they are all Pakistanis. They will enjoy the same rights and privileges as any other citizens and will play their rightful part in the affairs of Pakistan.” (February 1948.Talk on Pakistan broadcast to the people of USA)

  52. kashifiat

    Hahahahah

    YLH,

    U once gain show ur ZERO level tolerance
    Deleted my comment once again.

    bachay barai kab ho gai

  53. yasserlatifhamdani

    I have zero tolerance for Maududian Dogs and Enemies of Jinnah’s Pakistan.

  54. B in Ismail

    @ Khullat

    So true. Both the 2s should go – Article # 2 as well as Amendment # 2 of the Constitution. Jinnah’s Pakistan should most certainly be revived.

  55. kashifiat

    So , please bite yourself first🙂

  56. fair mind

    @Mustafa Shaban:
    “@fair mind: I dont believe this Mullah Mafia will last long, that is why I am optimistic”

    I agree with you. Its signs are already appearing. The other day Pakistan’s famous English Daily published newsreport on ‘Jesus (Isa AS) gave in Srinagar, Kashmir, India’. It would have not been possible, if Mullah-Mafia was not weakening. It’s a sign of Mullah-Mafia weakness.

    There is one positive side of ‘current conflict between Europe and Muslim world’: Mullah-Mafia is weakening.

    Educated Muslims are finding courage to think and question Muslim clergy. This will bring out peaceful, rational, tolerant, inspiring, loving, non-sectarian, and international message of Islam.

  57. @fair mind. I would agree with you. The reason especially being that the nation knows everything now due to the help of media. Uptil when can really this Mullah mafia last. There to me are ignorant people who maneuver the teachings of religion for personal gain. They should be punished.

  58. Bin Ismail

    @fair mind

    “There is one positive side of ‘current conflict between Europe and Muslim world’: Mullah-Mafia is weakening.”

    Agreed. But there have been occasions where the West has actually sponsored the Mullah Mafia. If the Mullah Mafia is weakened, due to any factor, it will most certainly be good. But ordinary Muslims have to realize that there is a difference between religion and clergy. Ordinary Muslims must also realize that Mullahism is only bringing infamy to Islam.

  59. Mustafa Shaban

    There was a shia scholar named Ali Shariati. He was a very progressive man….he used to preach majalis in a suit and with clean shaved. He was a great scholar. He made a theory about Shiasm, said there were 2 kinds, one was red shiasm and the other was black shiasm.

    Black Shiasm is the fundamentalist, clerical shiasm that never progressed with time and is not modern. It is restricted to rituals

    Red Shiasm is the revolutionary shiasm, its modern and progressive and it develops with time and becomes advanced. He said this is the way it should be. It is broad and involves an all round approach.

    Same thing can be said about Islam in general. There is a black fundamentalist Islam, and a red Islam , a revolutionary progressive Islam.

  60. Bin Ismail

    @ Mustafa Shaban

    1: It may nor be very prudent to gauge the progressiveness of a cleric be the length of his beard or by what he wears.

    2: Whether black or red, as long as you have a clergy running it, the risks of extremism will always remain alive. There will be fundamentalism in the name of progressiveness and ritualism in the name of revolution.

  61. Mustafa Shaban

    @Bin Ismail:

    1. I dont judge it that way, I was just pointing out that Ali Shariati was prepared to think out of the box.

    2. The point of red is that the clergy is not running it, its only a part of the structure, states should be run by technocrats not clergymen or politicians.

  62. Bin Ismail

    Sorry for the typos. Please read as:

    “It may nor be very prudent to gauge the progressiveness of a cleric by the length of his beard or by what he wears.”

  63. Nusrat Pasha

    Going back to the topic of discussion – “SHAME” – it is truly a matter of shame, for the entire nation that despite Quaid-e Azam’s vision of secular statecraft, his clear guidelines in this direction, and the dictates of commonsense, we still have not been able to come even close to separating Religion from State.