By Yasser Latif Hamdani
If you don’t nip a lie in the bud, it grows to be a tree. This is what has happened to the nationalist mythology perpetuated by General Zia. I don’t like wasting my weekly space in Daily Times to argue it out with specific lies of specific authors – which is why I tend to record my dissent here on PTH.
In his article today in Daily Times, Shahid Illyas, the self professed Pakhtun Nationalist and “secularist”, has reproduced the severally debunked and illogical arguments of the Jamaat-e-Islami and other Mullahs in Pakistan to bolster his own indefensible positions vis a vis Bacha Khan and Faqir of Ipi. Mr. Illyas is not bothered with the utter bankruptcy of his argument so long as he gets to abuse Jinnah and the Pakistan Movement. He is also unconcerned what his half truths would do to the cause of secularism. Like Ishtiaq Ahmed (and scores of other spent forces in our history ala Aga Shorish Kashmiri) he is seized with an irrational hatred for Jinnah, Sir Syed and the secular liberal leadership that Pakistan jettisoned – primarily through 1969’s education policy that specifically sought to down play Sir Syed’s and Jinnah’s modernity because it did not gel with the demands of Yahya’s political expediency. It is ironic that while Illyas criticizes Pakistan’s poor education system, he quotes Pakistan’s official narrative as the gospel truth. Continue reading
As our anchors and TV channels commit national and logical suicide by referring to Ahmadi Mosques as “marakaz” and “Ibadgahs”, we must remind ourselves of the views of Quaid-e-Azam Mahomed Ali Jinnah who relied heavily on the Jamaat Ahmadiyya and its brilliant son Ch. Zafrulla Khan (whose younger brother was killed yesterday). Jinnah not only considered Ahmadis Muslims, but relied on them to provide the manpower and skilled intellectual force in his efforts on behalf of the Muslims of India. As a secular liberal Jinnah could not imagine how someone who considered himself Muslim could be called something else.
“I have been asked a disturbing question, as to who among the Muslims can be a member of the Muslim Conference. It has been asked with particular reference to the Qadianis. My reply is that, as far as the constitution of the All-India Muslim League is concerned, it stipulates that any Muslim, without distinction of creed or sect, can become a member, provided he accepts the views, policy and programme of the Muslim League, signs the form of membership and pays the subscription. I appeal to the Muslims of Jammu and Kashmir not to raise sectarian questions, but instead to unite on one platform under one banner. In this lies the welfare of the Muslims. In this way, not only can Muslims make political and social progress effectively, but so can other communities, and so also can the state of Kashmir as a whole.”
“Mr. M. A. Sabir tried as hard as he could to persuade the Quaid-i-Azam to declare Qadianis as being out of the fold of Islam. But the Quaid-i-Azam stuck resolutely to his principle and kept on replying: `What right have I to declare a person non-Muslim, when he claims to be a Muslim’.
(23rd May, 1944, Srinagar)
THE PARLIAMENT MUST REPEAL THE SECOND AMENDMENT NOW! THE PARLIAMENT MUST STOP MAKING US THE LAUGHING STOCK OF THE WORLD FOR THE SAKE OF FEW CROOKS, CRANKS AND MADMEN WHO HAVE NEVER LIFTED A FINGER FOR PAKISTAN’S PROGRESS. THE PARLIAMENT MUST STOP PERSECUTING PAKISTAN’S LOYAL SONS AND DAUGHTERS.
[This was originally published in DAWN’s blog section and then subsequently also included in the much recommended critical PPP/Let us Build Pakistan site. The link for the latter is http://criticalppp.org/lubp/archives/4072 and for the former is http://blog.dawn.com/2009/12/31/the-scholar-the-sufi-and-the-fanatic/. The critical PPP site is quite refreshing and has taken on both the naysayers as well as been critical of its own party. Even their news reports are more reliable at times than the mainstream media. In reposting the article, critical PPP has accreditted DAWN. – Ali Abbas]
By Nadeem F. Paracha Dawn 31st Dec, 2009
Roughly speaking, the political and social aspects of Islam in Pakistan can be seen as existing in and emerging from three distinct sets and clusters of thought. These clusters represent the three variations of political and social Islam that have evolved in this country: modern, popular and conservative. Continue reading
Filed under Democracy, India, Islam, Islamism, movements, Pakistan, Partition, Politics, Religion, south asia, state, Sufism
By Yasser Latif Hamdani
General Kayani chose Peshawar to reaffirm his faith in the officially ordained “ideology of Pakistan” by declaring that no one could separate Pakistan from Islam. The message was quite clear: he was using reports in the media that ANP had proposed a change in Pakistan to drive home that Army was the defender of the country’s ideological borders. Continue reading
Yasser Latif Hamdani writing in The News:
Jaswant Singh’s book “Jinnah India — Partition Independence” has elicited interesting reviews in Pakistan. They are interesting entirely because of how off the mark they are which shows how little our country’s so-called intelligentsia understands the finer points of political science, constitutional law and history, especially those deep wells from which Jinnah himself professed to have drunk. Much has been written about the book – including the justified criticism that has been levelled at it for terrible punctuation and grammar. If Jinnah was calling, from beyond the grave, for his definitive biographer, the definitive biography now calls for an able editor. However, not many critics have addressed the political theme which has made it so famous. Continue reading
From the Dawn
Ideology and jihad have always remained a part of Pakistan’s political discourse but without an agreement on what the two concepts mean. They have meant different things to different people at different times.
Pakistan’s current crisis, too, can be traced in large measure to a dogmatic view that the ideology of Pakistan is Islamic and jihadist in the sense of fighting for faith, and is enjoined on all Muslims. Both show up together in Mr Majid Nizami’s recent plea to the Taliban to wage jihad in Kashmir and not in their own country. The Taliban are unlikely to pay heed but the point to consider is that if Mr Nizami as chairman of Pakistan’s Nazaria (ideology) Foundation has the right to coax the Taliban to fight the Indian forces in Kashmir, by the same token, he cannot deny the same right to Sufi Mohammad, ideologue of the rule of Sharia, to fight the Pakistan Army in Swat. Continue reading
Originally published in Dawn some 24 years ago. The author now is a great leader in his own right. His contribution here was as an historian. Part of this argument was explored in “Indus Saga and the Making of Pakistan”.
By Aitzaz Ahsan
When the rationalist abdicates his function and the obscurantist holds the field unchallenged, dogma is born. Its scope is narrow; its potential nil; its utility “non est”. Yet it is not a nullity. Dogma is negatory of growth, and recusant of progress. It is another name for stagnation.
To take and maintain its hold upon upon the minds of men, the dogmatist creates a mythological system. Myths become his vehicle. The common denominator between myths and dogma is an absence of reason and logic. Both complement each other.
The origins of Pakistan, the impelling and historical circumstances that brought it into being, and the political necessity of its creation have also been subjected to the onslaught of dogma. The rationalist has stood by and allowed the very obscurantist who opposed the Movement, to dictate, by what is called the Ideology of Pakistan. Of necessity, the mythological support-system of this dogmatic frameword is tailor-made to serve an elite tied up, through their Saudi partons, to the interests of the western world. Being bereft of historica truth these myths tend to distort the national identity, stulting growth and thereby, under the cover of a ‘myth of independence’ keeping us the captives of international imperialism.