New York Times Blog on PTH’s “Secular Pakistan Day”

Happy ‘Secular Pakistan Day’


Mohammed Ali Jinnah, Pakistan’s first leader, in the doorway of his study in Karachi in September, 1947, just weeks after the new country was formed.Bettmann/Corbis Mohammed Ali Jinnah, Pakistan’s first leader, in the doorway of his study in Karachi in September, 1947, just weeks after the new country was formed.

As Pakistan’s government continues to vie with Islamist charities to provide relief to millions of its citizens affected by catastrophic flooding, two posts on Lahore’s Pak Tea House blog are worth reading.

In the first post, “Floods Management: A Perfect Script for a Black Comedy,” the blog’s editor, Raza Rumi, writes:

They say that individual and collective characters are exposed in times of crisis. Indeed the Pakistani ruling classes have exposed themselves for their historical myopia and lack of vision. Political parties are fighting over optics, media perceptions and wasting their energies. TV channels and wise anchors on the other hand are competing who got there first to show the mammoth destruction and who fired more salvos at Asif Zardari. Adding insult to injury, the media remained busy for hours as to the alleged shoe-throwing incident at the president as if that was the topmost priority of this country.

The second blog post, “Secular Pakistan Day,” marks the anniversary of a major address by the country’s founder, Mohammed Ali Jinnah, on August 11, 1947 — three days before the state was created by the partition of India — in which, the blog’s editors note, he laid out a vision of a secular state.

In that speech, after some remarks about the need to root out corruption and nepotism, Mr. Jinnah made this impassioned plea for tolerance and the idea that all citizens of the new state of Pakistan would be equal, no matter what their ethnicity or religion:

Read more here



Filed under Pakistan

73 responses to “New York Times Blog on PTH’s “Secular Pakistan Day”

  1. bciv

    encouraging to know that PTH’s good work is being picked up by the likes of NYT’s blog. well done PTH.

    i was not surprised to notice that the NYT blog’s comments section for this post has attracted the same kind of indian rubbish that we frequently get here at PTH.

  2. Voldemort

    i’m sure the pakistani “liberals” have paid him (just as tom friedman gets paid by indians) well for him to have written a whole blog post on their crusade to bring secularism to pakistan.

  3. YLH

    chaddo jee harish pai. Ki karde ho tusi.

  4. S.A

    Well done PTH!

  5. S.A

    Well done PTH and buzz off pessimists!

  6. @bciv

    indian rubbish that we frequently get here at PTH.


    Και εσείς, αιματηρός; Κατόπιν κύβος, δασοφύλακας!PMA έχει λίγα που κάνουν τώρα.

    Ab tu-bhi, Khun-wale? Tab to chal par, vanvasi! PMA-ke liye kya raha baki?

  7. Rabia

    good work, PTH!

  8. Tilsim

    PTH, famous! Congrats!

  9. Tilsim

    @ Bathplug

    “Ab tu-bhi, Khun-wale? Tab to chal par, vanvasi! PMA-ke liye kya raha baki?”

    Come, come, let’s pick you and others up. BCIV’s comment don’t apply to the Giants amongst Men that post here. They know who they are 😉

  10. Tilsim

    @ Sardar Khan
    “I would say just keep dreaming it will never happen.”

    Good, at least one less thing to worry about.

  11. Amaar

    @Sardar Khan

    I am curious.

    Would you like a Christian, a Muslim or a Hindu to be able to freely practise his faith in complete peace in Pakistan?

    Would you want a non-Muslim to be jailed for blasphemy even he has never committed such an act?

  12. A reader

    When is Secular India Day?

  13. rationalist

    In India we have a pseudo-secular day all year round to appease those who wish to ridicule or vilify hindus.

    If you are thinking of pleasing muslims then you can bury secularism deep.below all the tectonics. Both Pakistan and India illustrate this. The former because muslims are 96% and cry foul over everything, the latter because muslims are 16% and cry foul over everything.

  14. PMA

    Bathplug (August 12, 2010 at 5:26 pm):

    No, no, no. There are more where they come from. At least a billion if not more. And if you include the descendants of Hanuman that roam streets of Delhi you got at least two billion of them. You will never be out of business. And while you are at it. Could you please get this young fella visa for Delhi.

  15. bciv


    i rightly get into trouble with our indian friends for not recognising this kind for the rubbish that they are, and now i am in trouble for calling them rubbish. btw, an illustration has been provided above, on cue.

    jado’n kaddya jaloos gareebaa’n, she’r vich churtaali lag gayee 😉

  16. bciv

    … i had forgotten all about the greek, i mean the actual greek, part. i wonder if it rhymes just as nicely as vanvasi and baki, in greek too. 🙂

  17. Anil Sharma

    Well Reader! India’s problem is different. Constitutionally, India has been a secular state since 1947, but the same can not be said confidently of India’s society, where non-secular attitudes, behavior and practices are rather deeply entrenched, and do sporadically acquire serious dimensions. The Sangh Parivar, Bal Thakare, and the more virulent forms such as Sadhvi Pragya Thakur etc. are sure manifestations of that malaise. In our case, a single day symbolism will not do. Secularism, needs to be defended and nurtured 24x7xn days.
    But unlike Pakistan, our “non-secular problem “morphs into communalism, rather than fundamentalism, which is a typical Pakistan problem. Dominant Indian (Hindu) communalism is anti-Muslim, anti-Christian, occasionally anti-Sikh, but the fundamentalism that you see in Pakistan, apart from being anti minority, does not spare even the Muslim Umma, and not just the minority Shias, but also women or anybody who dares to stand in the way, or appears to be violating their version of Sharia or Nizam- e – Mustafa.
    Not that there do not exist elements within the Hindu society who would not want their brand of Hinduism to be imposed; but the plurality, eclecticism, and the freewheeling nature of the religion have assured against the dominance of fundamentalism. So despite the many deviances, there remains enough space for plurality, and, even more so, spirituality which is pursued individually or even collectively in the form of various esoteric groups, though the dominant form remains Brahmanical Hinduism. Yes, that is true!
    Ironically, the fundamentalist shape that the religion of Islam has acquired under your Mullahdom, supported by a sometimes acquiescent, sometimes collusive, and sometimes a blatant promoter State, makes the possibility of such a flowering precarious. Anything that appears to be even remotely differing from the dominant form immediately becomes a target of organized repression, even violence. That this should have happened under Islam, appears to me paradoxical because the core of Islam as espoused by and actually lived by your Prophet was nothing but spiritual. His entire lived life, sayings and exhortations are a testimony to that. I have absolutely no doubt about that. Just tell me, did he ever say that he had founded the religion of Islam. Never! So Christ was a prophet of Islam. So were Musa, Yahya (John the Baptist) and others, from Adam onwards.
    These Prophets had their mureeds among various religious groups; in fact, their leaders, especially priests, fancied themselves to be their sole proprietors, and they had done to them what organized priestly classes do – deformed their personae and their teachings beyond recognition to suit their interests. The prophet of Islam, salvaged them from these vested interests for which he and the first generations of muslims faced untold persecution which are recorded in history. And what did the Prophet tell them – Not Jihad, but HIJRAT! “The entire world is Allah’s, if not here, then there. “
    He himself did Hijrat to Yasrab, now known as Medina.
    And when the Quraish did not let him and other Muslims live in peace even there, his followers wanted jihad. He did not immediately jump for it, although there were enough reasons for that. He sought guidance and permission from the Almighty, and only when it was granted did he ask his followers to go to fight. And what were the battles he fought. A close scrutiny shows that the battles were either defensive wars, or, in case of offense, to avoid a war, such as the non-battle of Tabouk.
    Sorry, I got carried away. Must pause here, because this can go on and on.
    The point I am trying to make is that secularism should not be a dirty word in Pakistan. It is not anti-religion. There exists a massive fountainhead in Islam which justifies secularism, primarily in the life, teachings and practices of the prophet of Islam, as also in the great Sufi traditions. Secularism should actually enable Islam to discover its true roots, its true genre. After all, Islam means peace. Asslam-e- lekum means peace be upon you, and don’t forget, though the prophet of Islam always had the peace of Allah bestowed upon him because he had completely surrendered before the Almighty, yet it was his extreme humility that he wanted sallallahu allahi wa-sallam to be affixed with him.
    That is Hazur-e-Akram sallallahu allahi wa-sallam. Do you really need to go anywhere else for inspiration for Secularism?

  18. Hameed

    I just wish PTH’s site theme is improved a bit.

  19. Bin Ismail

    @ Anil Sharma (August 12, 2010 at 9:56 pm)

    No doubt, India’s constitution is a secular document, an attribute that makes it admirable indeed.

    In principle, the constitution of any country has to guarantee equality and justice to all its citizens, which becomes impossible in the presence of a State Religion.

    You’ve quoted the instance of the Holy Prophet. I’m sure you would be aware of this fact, although most Muslims today are not, that in the Charter of Madina, it was stated clearly that the Muslims and the Jews of Madina would be an “ummah waahidah”, meaning “one community”. Now, on a religious plane, obviously they were two distinct communities but as citizens of the state of Madina, they were declared as one community – and declared so by none other than the Messenger of God himself. Hence, the religious identity of the citizen became irrelevant to the State. This in essence, is secularism.

  20. Anil Sharma

    @ Bin Ismail
    I agree with you. But I am going further than that. The prophet of Islam was not interested in political power for himself or for his followers. That just was not his concern. It’s the organized religions – Jews, Christians, and above all those of his own tribesmen who left him with no option. He had to fight and control territories because they would not let his followers follow the faith they professed. Even the option of Hijrat was denied, or made unbearably costly. I have read accounts of that persecution. The Prophet suffered his own persecution with exemplary fortitude – all in the path of Allah, which remained his refrain for his followers – Everything in the path of Allah. But the untold oppression and persecution of his followers forced him to seek permission to fight back.
    The problem is that only he could have remained steadfast to this cardinal principal. It requires not only total submission, but also a high degree of spiritual attainment. The Sahafis, who had the benefit of his personal spiritual guidance, were very pious and righteous people but that was not enough. Just an example – the Prophet once asked, I do not remember his name, if two Muslims fight with swords, and one of them dies, who will go to heaven and who to hell. The man replies, “of course, the person who kills will go to hell” but the Prophet said, ‘No. both will go to hell’. Astonished, the man asks, “Why so?” and the Prophet replied,’ the killed man also had the intention of harming the other”. Such were his standards- not only words and deeds, but also in thought. I had referred to the Sahafis. The blood letting had started not long after the Prophet had left this world. So where do these Jihadis stand? According to another Hadees, the prophet had said that on the Day of Judgement, an injury by a goat with horns to a goat without horns would also be accounted for.
    The Prophet, from all accounts, was an epitome of humility. The path of Almighty demands that. Even the feeling that one is on the path of Allah smacks of ego. It requires total submission, and then not even telling oneself or anybody else. That is the precondition of real jihad. How many of us can meet this?
    With such exacting conditionalities, secularism is the only option. Let people decide what they want, and leave it to the Almighty to guide them. He is all knowing, all powerful and all capable. Who knows, by arrogating for ourselves the right to force people to follow a certain path, we may be crossing what is permissible and inviting the wrath of Almighty. One can, at best, tell with humility that this is what has been ordained and therefore should be followed. That is real Tableeg. Beyond this, could be Allah’s wrath. The holy Quran constantly reminds of it and does so more forcefully than any other Holy Book. This has been the path of Sufi Saints, and they have contributed more to Islam and the world than ……

  21. Tilsim

    @ Anil

    You understand what this religion is about. Not too many people in Pakistan do anymore.

  22. YLH

    Harimau Iyer,

    I intend to respond to all your lies and expose them conclusively…. in good time…. especially the stories you’ve concocted and deluded yourself with vis a vis direct action day.

    The infirmity of your mind, further exacerbated by your prejudice, makes you incapable of even seeing glaring contradictions. On one hand you accuse Bengali Muslims of killing Hindus… on the other you try and link 1971 (which in main was a massacre of Bengali Muslims by Punjabi-Pakhtun Muslims) with direct action day.

    Anyway…wait till 16th August. I shall pay you Indian chappies back with interest.

  23. Bin Ismail

    @ Anil Sharma (August 13, 2010 at 1:41 am)

    “…..I agree with you. But I am going further than that…..”

    Thank you. What I meant to point out was in no way contrary to what you contend. The crux of my point was that even when a truly Islamic state and society did exist, truer than which may not be logically conceivable, with God’s messenger himself at the helm of affairs of both State and Society, the nature of the set-up was essentially secular.

    Islam is actually a timeless attitude, an attitude that God has been resurrecting through all His prophets who were sent to all nations – a blessed attitude that entails submission to God and extending peace to His creatures. Indeed, the manifestation of this attitude has nothing to do with having or not having a nation-state. This attitude, called “Islam” is a path that has been paved by God Himself, by treading which man can attain union with God. You do not need a State, as a prerequisite, to be able to submit yourself to your God. Neither is the State a prerequisite to being peaceful, peace-loving and peace-promoting.

    The Islamic State that existed during the last 12 years of the Prophet’s lifetime and the following 30 years of Khilafat, was purely coincidental. The Prophet migrated to Madina. The people of Madina, Jews, pagans and Muslims collectively elected him their Chief Moderator, Chief Arbiter and Chief Executive. Thus an Islamic State, if one must insist on calling it so, came into being. The Prophet’s successors, by default were handed over these responsibilities after him as additional responsibilities – spiritual leadership being the principle trust.

    The dynasties that followed the Khilafat-e Rashida, were little beyond mundane political rulers, who were incidentally Muslim.


  24. mubarak

    @Anil Sharma

    Your understanding of islam seems to be far ahead of our maulvi fadils.

    proud to be blogging on PTH

  25. Harimau Iyer


  26. YLH

    Harami iyer,

    Have you heard of the word “metaphor”. He also spoke about machine guns of Congress and British.

    But you would have to have some basic knowledge of the English language.

  27. HUMAN

    Hi All…I have few questions.Please enlighten me.

    Is secularism a religion?

    Can a religion be secular?

    Are “religion” and “secularism” antonym or synonyms?

    Is “separation of religion and state ” possible in a “muslim” or “hindu” state?

    Is secularism possible without “separation of religion and state”?

  28. Bin Ismail

    @ HUMAN (August 13, 2010 at 6:31 pm)

    May I have the privilege of offering replies to the very valid questions, raised by you.

    Q#1. Is secularism a religion?

    Answer: Secularism is not a religion because the word “religion” would signify a belief system that is attributed to Divinely revealed knowledge from on-high. Secularism, in my humble opinion, is merely a separation of religious dogma from statecraft and politics.

    Q#2. Can a religion be secular?

    Answer: Yes indeed. If a certain religion promotes separation of religious dogma and politics, it would indeed be secular.

    Q#3. Are “religion” and “secularism” antonym or synonyms?

    Answer: Neither. “Atheism” would be an appropriate antonym of “Religion”. Atheism means not believing in a Deity or any belief system founded on Divinely revealed knowledge. “Secularism” simply means a separation of “Religion” and “State”. By “religion”, I mean a specific “religious doctrine”, not certain universally accepted religious values, which are held by adherents of all religions, in equal reverence, such as honesty, truthfulness, justice, equality, fairplay and kindness.

    Q#4. Is “separation of religion and state” possible in a “muslim” or “hindu” state?

    Answer: Most certainly. It is possible in both cases. If a Muslim-majority state or a Hindu-majority state treats all its citizens, irrespective of their religious affiliation, equally, it is secular. If the measure of the yard does not alter while moving from a Muslim citizen to a non-Muslim citizen or from a Hindu citizen to a non-Hindu citizen, the state is secular. If the state does not interfere with the religious activities of the citizen, unless the religion is practiced to the detriment of another citizen, which means compromising the other’s fundamental human rights, the state is secular.

    Q#5. Is secularism possible without “separation of religion and state”?

    Answer: I’m afraid not. “Secularism” is by definition, a “separation of religion and state”.


  29. HUMAN

    @Bin Ismail
    Thank you for taking time to answer my questions in detail.I am convinced by your answers.i ve another question.i ll be grateful if you answer.
    It means secularism is good for all including atheists as well as theists.

    Then why are religious minded people esp Mullahs, hate secularism so much? and why are they afraid of it so much?


  30. AA khalid

    ”Then why are religious minded people esp Mullahs, hate secularism so much? and why are they afraid of it so much?”

    Apologies to Bin Ismail if I am so to speak interfering in his conversation with HUMAN.


    Those who are in positions of religious authority and their slavish followers (who revere authoratarian authority in the hands of what they see as those who are on the ”straight path” since then truth can be established quickly even through means of coercion since in this type of mullah religiosity truth matters alone and not the means to arrive at this truth), since a secular state would mean there would be no privleges afforded to these mullahs.

    In a secular state religious authority would be given no legislative authority or any sort of political authority. Religious authority would be independent of the State and would have to compete in the democratic discourse to get their views across. This requires an attitude of critical debate and analysis which the mullah does not possess.

    Furthermore, secularism in popular Pakistan discourse (and across the Muslim World) is seen as anti-God, partly due to the problematic of translating the world secular in languages in the Muslim World. For example in Arabic, secularism is translated as such that literally means ”no religion”, which offends the sensibilities of religious people. Secularism means ”anti-God”, ”anti-religion” in the minds of some religious people.

    This deliberate distortion of the concept of secularism by fear mongers on the religious right is a massive obstacle to having a sensible, sophisticated and nuanced debate on secularism in Pakistan.

    Hope this helps, and I am sure Bin Ismail has a lot to add on this question aswell.

  31. Bin Ismail

    @ HUMAN (August 14, 2010 at 2:24 am)

    Thank you indeed. Yes, precisely. A secular setup will accommodate with equal hospitality, the theist and the atheist, both. The secular state will entertain the religious identity of the citizen with a blind eye and a deaf ear.

    Why do mullahs oppose, or as you’ve most appropriately put it, hate the idea of the secular state? Simple. Because they need a State Religion as a permanent backdoor, for access to political power. The secular state does not extend this luxury to anyone.


  32. Bin Ismail

    @ AA Khalid (August 14, 2010 at 2:38 am)

    Most welcome Sir. No apologies needed. This is an open forum for everybody. That’s the beauty of PTH.

    Well said. I agree. In my opinion, in a truly secular state, at the level of “society”, which is a level very different from that of “state”, people would continue to enjoy the freedom of association, of making religious associations and of administering and financing such associations. But these associations would have to be strictly peaceful and apolitical. The secular state would not interfere with their activities, and they of course would be expected to stay out of politics.

    Your point on religious authority and legislative authority, too, is valid. As I see it, in a secular state, a religious leader would enjoy complete freedom in extending religious and moral guidance to members of his denomination, but his guidance would not be allowed to infringe legislation and statecraft.

    At times I have a feeling that some people deliberately mistranslate the word “secularism” as for instance “la deeniyat”, an expression that connotes being religionless, and contend that a secular state is bound to house a religionless society. Forgive me if I sound cynical, but my feeling is that this mistranslation is not exactly as innocent and inadvertent as it seems. Those responsible for these erroneous translations, incidentally happen to be the ones aspiring to use the fulcrum of religion to their political advantage.


  33. HUMAN

    So as long as seculars will use dialogue instead of force ,we will have to bear mullas,fundamentalists or terrorists.

  34. HUMAN

    Or as long as our army(pak army) does not become secular , we will have terrorism,fundamentalism and mullahs.

  35. Bin Ismail

    @ HUMAN

    …or as long as we, as a nation and as a people do not realize that we owe this to our country, to its founder who wanted this country to be secular and to ourselves.

  36. rationalist

    To a a khalid

    “For example in Arabic, secularism is translated as such that literally means ”no religion”, which offends the sensibilities of religious people. Secularism means ”anti-God”, ”anti-religion” in the minds of some religious people. ”

    How destructive this language and its grip are for mankind. Your god made a big mistake in choosing this language. This language has been an instrument of fascism all along.

    Offence of religious people is never possible unless their religion is fake. A truly religious person is never offended by ANYTHING. That is his true intelligence, wisdom, mercifulness and forgiving nature.

  37. Bin Ismail

    @rationalist (August 14, 2010 at 10:18 am)

    “…..Your god made a big mistake in choosing this language. This language has been an instrument of fascism all along…..”

    Sorry for intruding. God’s choice was perfect. The challenge arises when a certain terminology and syntax are made available to the imbecile for translation. This challenge is quite similar to the one being valiantly confronted by your worthy self in tackling the current topic of discussion.

  38. @Bin Ismail

    Why do you hate imbeciles? They are harmless, necessary adjuncts of nature, intended to convey to the rest of humanity what might have been. Why add nails to their existing cruel crown of thorns? Why compare ‘rationalist’ to them? Has fate not been harsh enough?

  39. rationalist

    to bin ismail

    Has your god revealed to you a name-list of imbeciles in your holy book? If specific names are not given then it become another mad bout of smug accusations. Guidance has to be accurate, otherwise it causes more problems.

    God’s choice is not something that you can pocket for yourself. Your arabic god’s choices are all turning out to be wrong. We don’t want the arabic god usurping the monotheistic position.

  40. Bin Ismail

    @Bathplug (August 14, 2010 at 1:37 pm)

    I assure you, I do not hate anybody. I was only trying to help ‘rationalist’ in proceeding rationally, but I suppose, in vain.

    @ rationalist (August 14, 2010 at 2:05 pm)

    You are not offending anybody but yourself.

  41. HUMAN

    “….Offence of religious people is never possible unless their religion is fake. A truly religious person is never offended by ANYTHING. That is his true intelligence, wisdom, mercifulness and forgiving nature.”

    I present a hypothetical situation.Lets suppose that islam is a fake religion or (as you would like to say)lets admit that islam is a fake religion..So what would YOU like us to adopt as our worldview..Hinduism?.is your hinduism a true religion?..If your answer is yes, you should not use “rationalist” as your username..what about “bania, chotaram,hanuman”..Rationality and hinduism are opposite my dear.

  42. Dastagir

    Rationalist should read what Kanchi Iliah has to say on Hinduism. Kanchi has defined it in 2 words. I want him to take he pain and find it out. Its the most apt description of Hinduism.

  43. “A man’s ethical behavior should be based effectually on sympathy, education, and social ties; no religious basis is necessary.Man would indeed be in a poor way if he had to be restrained by fear of punishment and hope of reward after death.” –Albert Einstein !!!

  44. Tilsim

    @ Waqar

    Well said, very true and Albert Einstein whom you quote was also a believer in God. So your words are not, in themselves, incompatible with belief. In case Muslims fear liberal ideas.

  45. Harimau Iyer

    Fact: Jinnah called for Direct Action Day on Aug 16, 1946.

    Fact: Suhrawardy, the Premier of Bengal Province declared a holiday on that day.

    Fact: The police were not asked/allowed to control the killings of Hindus by Muslims that day.

    Fact: The Governor was equally inattentive to his duties as Head of the Province to control the riots.

    Fact: There were three days of rioting in which Hindu retaliation against Muslims started on Day 2, the day after Direct Action Day.

    Pakistanis such as Yasser Latif Hamdani can paint whatever picture he wants by quoting “The Sole Statesman” or some such nonsense or by refusing to quote from H V Hodson’s book “The Great Divide” from which he has quoted selectively in the past.

    Pak Tea House moderators can edit my posts and hide these facts from the Pakistani public and continue to mislead them.

    That would not serve the purpose of historical accuracy or understanding between the peoples of Pakistan and India.

  46. YLH

    Harami iyer,

    Read my article tomorrow morning. In fact I have quoted H V Hodson in it page 164 where Hodson clearly says that Jinnah’s direct action day was a call for civil disobedience not violence.

    Your lies will be exposed for what they are. Lies of a Hindu fascist bigot and a crook.

  47. YLH

    “Sole statesman”…

    Ha ha ok. Tell us what do you think H V Hodson’s book is without googling.

    But then you live in your own distorted little world you crook.

  48. Harimau Iyer

    Yasser Latif Hamdani,

    You said that Gandhi was sleeping naked with his nieces during the Partition riots while Jinnah was going around to riot-torn areas of Karachi to offer succor to the affected.

    You know that is a lie.

    You know that Gandhi was in Noakhali in Bengal, one of the worst riot-affected areas in which Hindus were massacred en masse because of the huge Muslim majority there. Gandhi walked in Noakhali district with no bodyguards to protect him. He went on a fast till the people returned to their senses and stopped the killings.

    In fact, he did the same thing in Calcutta and so shamed Suhrawardy that Suhrawardy joined him in a fast to cool down the tempers of the people.

    It would be possible for me to say Jinnah was enjoying his customary ham sandwich for lunch and a burra peg of whiskey before dinner while his people were being killed because of his call for the Direct Action Day. I do not say that because for all I know Jinnah did not eat a ham sandwich nor had a drink at that time and I am willing to give Jinnah the benefit of the doubt. On the other hand, Gandhi did sleep with his nieces naked to test his own self-control as he had taken a vow of chastity. But that was in his ashram at Sabharmathi far away from Noakhali or Calcutta which is where you placed it and at a different time. You also do not tell the readers of Pak Tea House that Gandhi went on a self-purification fast lasting three weeks when one day he woke up with an erection. That could have been caused by simply pressure from the bladder (as happens to many young men) and not necessarily due to any erotic fantasy on his part but Gandhi did not excuse himself that way.

    Do you know what it says on the Seal of the Government of India?

    It says “Truth Alone Triumphs”.

    Tell the truth and the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

    As a lawyer, you should know that that is the oath a witness has to take when he takes the stand to offer testimony.

  49. YLH

    Truth will triumph yet again tomorrow morning …when liars and crooks like you shall be exposed…as you were exposed a few minutes ago when you referred to Hodson, a name I introduced your sorry ass to.

    Hodson is very clear on the issue of Direct Action Day. Have you bothered to read him.

    Moderators – please show Harami Iyer the door.
    *** This Message Has Been Sent Using BlackBerry Internet Service from Mobilink ***

  50. Harimau Iyer

    Yasser Latif Hamdani,

    Gandhi called for non-violent civil disobedience.

    When he went on the Dandi Salt March, his followers were beaten brutally. Not one raised his hands to protect himself, let alone attack the police.

    Jinnah said “Today, we have unsheathed the pistol”. That was about Direct Action Day. His followers did not stay non-violent, unless you hold the opinion that killing Hindus is not violence, and you do have a right to that opinion.

  51. Harimau Iyer

    Yasser Latif Hamdani,

    When will you admit to Pak Tea House readers that you deliberately lied when you said Gandhi was sleeping naked with his nieces during the Partition riots?

  52. YLH

    And yet not one Muslim in Calcutta was reported with a pistol. Infact Hindus and Sikhs were according to Francis Tuker armed with pistols and guns.

    I know your grasp over the English language is nothing to write home about but there is such a thing called “metaphor”.

    Jinnah described Congress civil disobedience a gun..did he mean it literally?

  53. YLH

    Gandhi was sleeping with his grand nieces naked through out. I did not lie.

    But your lies have been exposed.

  54. Harimau Iyer

    Yasser Latif Hamdani,

    You are for secularism and against the mullahs.

    You rail against the mullahs of pre-partition India because they were against the creation of Pakistan.

    Yet your prophet of Islamic secularism, Mohammad Ali Jinnah, caused the partition which resulted in millions of deaths and forced migrations.

    If the non-secularist mullahs had their way, there would have been no partition and millions of lives would have been saved.

    So, if you are for the Cabinet Mission Plan which would have kept India united, you should be naturally supporting the mullahs and not Jinnah because the mullahs couldn’t care under what plan India was to have stayed united whereas Jinnah was quite particular!

    Confused? Just about as much as Jinnah?

  55. @Tilsim
    “Well said, very true and Albert Einstein whom you quote was also a believer in God”

    I cannot conceive of a God who rewards and punishes his creatures, or has a will of the kind that we experience in ourselves. Neither can I nor would I want to conceive of an individual that survives his physical death; let feeble souls, from fear or absurd egoism, cherish such thoughts. I am satisfied with the mystery of the eternity of life and with the awareness and a glimpse of the marvelous structure of the existing world, together with the devoted striving to comprehend a portion, be it ever so tiny, of the Reason that manifests itself in nature.
    -Albert Einstein, The World as I See It

  56. YLH

    Read Jaswant Singh’s book or H M Seervai’s.

    It was your Mahatma who was responsible who was like you busy sucking Mullah cock…

    I am glad you admit that Mullahs were ready to accept United India at any price…

    We were for United India only if Hindu fascists like you were firmly put in their place.

    Indians like you could not deal with a self confident and independent minded Muslim Salariat …hence partition.

  57. YLH


    Please delete my comments and Mr. Harimau’s as well.

  58. Harimau Iyer

    Yasser Latif Hamdani,

    You keep asking Pak Tea House moderators to delete my posts and ban me from the site.

    I am trying to get a viewpoint different than yours to Pak Tea House readers, who I assume are educated because this site conducts its discussions in the English language. You clearly do not want the readers to read a different view of history.

    In what way are you different from Pakistan’s mullahs who preach a one-sided view to the illiterate — and thus less fortunate — common man of Pakistan?

    Moderators, when you delete my posts, in what way are you different from the ignorant mullahs you complain about?

    Or do you think that Pak Tea House readers ought to be shielded from viewpoints not approved by the moderators because they have the same intellectual maturity as the illiterate Urdu-speaking common citizen of Pakistan?

  59. YLH

    I know your perfidy very well. You are a liar who gets caught with his pants down.

    This is not We don’t allow sewer rats and crooks.

  60. Harimau Iyer

    Yasser Latif Hamdani,

    I know you think low of Gandhi’s trick of going on a fast to stop riots.

    But Jinnah didn’t try that even once.

    Tell you what: why didn’t Jinnah, just to prove that Gandhi was such a fool to go on fasts, get photos published in newspapers of himself eating a ham sandwich and enjoying a glass of whiskey?

    Perhaps that would gotten the riots stopped from the Muslim side as the Muslims asked themselves why they should follow a non-observant Muslim!

    Did you think about it?

  61. YLH

    Jinnah was not interested in dramay bazi. Under Jinnah’s watch Karachi kept completely peaceful …Disorder in Karachi happened briefly in January, and Jinnah went to the scene and had all Muslims return the loot. He also gave shoot to kill orders against Muslim rioters.

    He didn’t need to “fast” and indulge in such spiritual mumbo jumbo. Yet he was appreciative of Gandhi’s efforts too…and appealed to Gandhi to end his fast to continue to work for Hindu Muslim unity in both India and Pakistan ..this according to Raj Mohan Gandhi..who was Gandhi’s grandson.

  62. YLH

    Moderators please ensure that Mr. Iyer is removed. He and I have gone through this a million times.

    He is a liar and a crook, as evidenced by his little claim about Hodson.

    On another occasion he claimed that Jinnah would not be elected a dogcatcher at Bombay municipal. The irony…not only was Jinnah the longest serving elected legislator in India, he was elected president of Bombay municipal corporation twice.

    We cannot allow such idiots aka harami iyer to pollute this website.

  63. Tilsim

    @ Indian Pundit

    That’s true he did not have the a concept of a personal God but he did believe in God. This is what he also said:

    “I believe in Spinoza’s God who reveals himself in the orderly harmony of what exists, not in a God who concerns himself with fates and actions of human beings.” Upon being asked if he believed in God by Rabbi Herbert Goldstein of the Institutional Synagogue, New York, April 24, 1921, Einstein: The Life and Times, Ronald W. Clark, Page 502

    who reveals himself in the orderly harmony of what exists, not in a God who concerns himself with the fates and actions of human beings. (Albert Einstein)

    Introduction – Albert Einstein Philosophy of Religion / Theology Quotes – Science vs. Religion – Einstein on Jews & Anti-Semitism – Top of Page
    Introduction: Pantheist Religion of Albert Einstei

    “A human being is part of the whole called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. We experience ourselves, our thoughts and feelings as something separate from the rest. A kind of optical delusion of consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from the prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty. The true value of a human being is determined by the measure and the sense in which they have obtained liberation from the self. We shall require a substantially new manner of thinking if humanity is to survive. (Albert Einstein, 1954)

    The most beautiful and most profound experience is the sensation of the mystical. It is the sower of all true science. He to whom this emotion is a stranger, who can no longer wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead. To know that what is impenetrable to us really exists, manifesting itself as the highest wisdom and the most radiant beauty which our dull faculties can comprehend only in their primitive forms – this knowledge, this feeling is at the center of true religiousness.
    ( Albert Einstein – The Merging of Spirit and Science)”

  64. Bin Ismail

    @ Tilsim (August 16, 2010 at 12:04 am)

    From the words of Einstein, you’ve presented, one could safely conclude that there was a sufi hidden within Einstein. Admirable indeed.

  65. Bin Ismail

    @ Harimau Iyer

    Forgive me for saying this, but your comments regarding Jinnah reveal that you seem to be viewing history less through spectacles of impartiality, and more through a magnifying glass of prejudice.

  66. Maryanne Khan


    the beauty in Einstein’s comments is that he does not delegate a ‘gatekeeper’ to obtaining self knowledge and knowledge of the world.

    Go back to what Bin Ismael said above: ‘Those responsible for these erroneous translations, incidentally happen to be the ones aspiring to use the fulcrum of religion to their political advantage.’

    And I don’t mean literal translation, but translation of intent as a means of procuring political and legislative clout. It’s about power, and it is dangerous to hand that power over to gatekeepers who are neither elected nor burdened with the responsibility of the real pact between governments and their citizens. Governments are responsible for providing work, infrastructure, food shelter education etc, none of which is the domain of religion.

  67. Anil Sharma

    Harimau Iyer, Is Hamam me Saare Nange Niklenge. (Everyone would be found to be naked in this bath)
    The Hindus and Sikhs “remember” only what Muslims did to them, and Muslims only what Hindus and Sikhs did to them. But perhaps you do not know that in the bloodletting, 50% more Muslims were killed. Obviously, they did not kill themselves. It was sheer madness then, and both sides did killings to the hilt. But in this madness there were also many examples of humanness and sanity where people on both sides of the fence defended the ‘other’ to great risks to their lives and helped them survive.
    Don’t you think, those who want a secular Pakistan represent the human and the sane? And considering the odds they are up against, it is a commendable effort. And they are really up against heavy odds! In comparison, we got our secularism, whatever its limitations, literally on a platter. They may be a minority, but they are a valiant minority. Allow them some space to maneuver. Scoring brownie points or trivializing serious questions of history, something that appears to be done by both sides in the PTH debate will not help the cause. Not that these questions of history don’t exist, but they they need to be addressed dispassionately, considering that both sides carry a heavy load of prejudices, compounded by the fact that each side sees them as The Truth.
    So please……

  68. @Tilsim

    My point is Einstein did not believe in “conventional” view of God. Infact i find “conventional” view of God to be quite stupid.

    Just consider:
    1) People say nothing happens with out the approval of God. Or everything is predestined by God.

    2)The same people then claim that God will judge your actions one fine day……

    If everything is “predestined” by God…….then why will HE judge us???

  69. @Anil Sharma
    “But in this madness there were also many examples of humanness and sanity where people on both sides of the fence defended the ‘other’ to great risks to their lives and helped them survive.”
    One Pakistani girl once told me of how her Uncle was saved by a hindu family during riots during partition……

  70. rationalist

    to human and dastagir

    Since I do not make any mission for hindu religions hence your objections are void. A missionary ideology or religion has to be judged differently from a non-missionary one.

    A lot of what Kancha Ilaiah says about hindu religions (I have read his essays eagerly) is true and it is even more true about islam. But we have to consider not only x but also dx/dt. The value of x may be bad, but if dx/dt (=rate of change of x with time) is pointing towards more good, then there is sign for hope. Here (=what concerns dx/dt values) hindu religions are showing a much better performance than islam.

    A religions (or ideology) that regards a book or person as final, unmatchable and uncritizable becomes a fascism centered around this book or person. This is in the nature of society and humans beings.

    It is a wrong view of rationality to say that it excludes mysticism or legends or religions. Rationlism means one takes things as they are and analyses them for contradictions, especially those that lead or could lead to violence. Hindu religions are thus seen to be less productive in terms of violence and islam much more productive. Even many muslims are asking why islam is so violent. But being muslims they dare not see or speak out the real reason, which is in the kuran, hadith and sirat itself.

  71. Tilsim

    @ Maryanne Khan

    I could n’t agree more.

    @ Indian Pundit

    Einstein said he was a determinist. Everything that happened was following a rule. That’s probably different to believing in destiny but requires some reflection and discussion but probably not appropriate for this thread.

    @ Bin Ismail

    Yes, I thought Sufi too. Although most Sufis were careful not to negate divine law.

  72. rationalist

    to tilsim

    Einstein was a determinst in matters of physics. That’s why his opposition to the quantum theory (which he thought was incomplete since it could only make statistical forecasts). He was not a determinist in metaphysical matters. He was careful never to express his views about things that he did not understand. He resented the role that his fans tried to impose upon him.


    “…It is a wrong view of rationality to say that it excludes mysticism or legends or religions”

    You have compartmentalized your thought processes in order to avoid otherwise inevitable and destructive conflicts. In this manner, rational and irrational thought processes can coexist in separate, locked compartments of the brain without connectivity. Yet there is some inevitable leakage from your irrational to the rational compartment, surreptitiously contaminating you are “irrational rationalist”.