Tag Archives: South

Shikarpur (A tragic city in Sindh)

Shikarpur city in Sindh has 400 year old rich history. From the centuries this city was famous as a gate way for the business point of view.

Traders from all over South east Asia passed through this city via Bolan to Iran and other countries.

Before the partition in 1947, Shikarpur was a great city with rich culture, wonderful architectural buildings, fabulous parks, mouth-watering cuisines, and also famous for their Kulfi and Pickles.

It was called “The Paris of Sindh”. A city which was made by their own people, without the help of the state. But now the situation in Shikarpur is terrible. Law and order situation is alarming. Its looks like many Shikarpurin’s has lost the affection about their historical city.

Young and educated Shikarpurin’s need to get unite to save this wonderful city, with amazing past.

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Why India Is Democratic and Pakistan Is Not?

The Indian-Pakistani Divide

Why India Is Democratic and Pakistan Is Not

By Christophe Jaffrelot

Many comparisons of India and Pakistan attribute India’s democracy to Hinduism and Pakistan’s autocracy to Islam. Philip Oldenburg’s new book steers clear of this argument, focusing on historical, political, and external factors to explain how India came out ahead. …

Read more : Foreign Affairs

Tsunami hits Japan after massive quake

The most powerful earthquake to hit Japan since records began has struck the country’s north-east and triggered a devastating tsunami.

Japanese TV showed cars, ships and buildings swept away by a vast wall of water after the 8.9-magnitude quake.

A state of emergency has been declared at a nuclear power plant but officials said there were no radiation leaks. …

Read more : BBC

Watch what Pakistani youth is saying?

Pakistan enriched with the overwhelming and enthusiastic youth.Provide them opportunity to come and present their recommendation. Are they really want to change or they also want to become the part of this existing system? In their views what the Pakistan should be? Do they believe on democratic change or want a revolution like Arab countries? The language of the program is urdu/ Hindi.

Program host – Talat Hussain, GUESTS: Tariq Azeem, Kashmala Tariq, Bushra Gohar, Khawja Afif, Ali Raza, Ali Hameed, Ahmad Bilal, Abeera Fatima.

Courtesy: DAWN News (News Night with Talat, 4th March, 2011)

via – ZemTVYou Tube

An international cultural exchange: Indian & Korean Traditional melody – Beautiful Mixture of two Different Instruments of Different Cultures

Renowned South Korean artist Yu Kyung-Hwa performs Korean traditional music in different rhythms on the instrument Cheolhyeongeum, with Sahil Patel on Tabla at Rhythm Riders in Ahmedabad, Gujarat. The very unique coming together of these two instruments was highly appreciated by the audiences gathered for this international music exchange.

You Tube link

Pakistan radicals rule the streets

by Amanda Hodge

TENS of thousands of people crowded the streets of Lahore late on Sunday demanding freedom for the assassin of Punjab governor Salman Taseer.

The protestors are also demanding death for the US consular official who killed two suspected armed robbers in self-defence.

Demonstrators from religious parties Jamaat-e-Islami, Jamiat Ulema-e-Pakistan and the banned terrorist-linked charity Jamaat-ud-Dawa held banners in support of Mumtaz Qadri — the police guard who killed Taseer last month because the governor had supported changes to Pakistan’s draconian blasphemy laws.

Opposition party leaders from more mainstream parties also lined up to assure the protesters they would never support changes to the blasphemy law and would quit the National Assembly should the government attempt to amend them.

Protesters chanted slogans such as “Free Mumtaz Qadri” while demanding the harshest penalty for Raymond Davis, a US consular official who was arrested for double murder on Friday after shooting two armed motorcyclists he feared were about to rob him.

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“We warn the government and administration that . . . if they help the arrested American illegally, then this crowd will surround the US embassy and presidential palace in Islamabad,” one official from the Jamiat Ulema Islam party said.

The US has demanded Mr Davis’s release, claiming he has diplomatic immunity, but the Pakistani government says the courts should decide his fate.

In another corner of the Punjab’s once feted cultural capital, 500 people attended a peace rally and remembrance vigil for the slain governor.

Among them was liberal commentator Raza Rumi, who conceded yesterday: “It’s not a good time to be a liberal in Pakistan.

“Forget liberal — it’s not a good time to be a moderate.”

Analysts say the fact that among the speakers at the larger rally was JUD founder Hafiz Saeed, believed to have also founded terrorist group Lashkar-e-Taiba, says much about the complicity of state forces in Pakistan’s extremist groundswell.

But just as telling was who was sharing the podium.

Members of Imran Khan’s so-called moderate Tehreek-e-Insaaf (Movement for Justice) party also spoke in support of the blasphemy laws.

“All the major political parties from the Right and the centre were there, which shows the Right is capturing more and more political space,” says Rumi. …

Read more : The Australian

Winston Churchill & his argument against granting India / Pakistan independence!

Winston Churchill on India

Winston Churchill … & his argument against granting India / Pakistan independence …

“Power will go to rascals, rogues, freebooters … All leaders will be of low caliber & men of straw … They’ll have sweet tongues & silly hearts …

They will fight amongst themselves for power & the two countries will be lost in political squabbles … A day would come when even air & water will be taxed.” He wrote this 64 years ago. . .

Incredibly the leaders of India & Pakistan worked hard to prove him right …

Courtesy: Pakistani e-lists/ e-groups.

Malnutrition in Sindh is worse than the famine in Ethiopia, Darfur and Chad – UN says

Pakistan flood crisis as bad as African famines, UN says

Survey shows almost a quarter of children under five are malnourished in Sindh province, six months after floods

Declan Walsh in Islamabad

A “humanitarian crisis of epic proportions” is unfolding in flood-hit areas of southern Pakistan where malnutrition rates rival those of African countries affected by famine, according to the United Nations.

In Sindh province, where some villages are still under water six months after the floods, almost one quarter of children under five are malnourished while 6% are severely underfed, a Floods Assessment Needs survey has found.

I haven’t seen malnutrition this bad since the worst of the famine in Ethiopia, Darfur and Chad. It’s shockingly bad,” said Karen Allen, deputy head of Unicef in Pakistan. …

Read more : Guardian.co.uk

SINDHI & URDU are the most beautiful and melodious languages of South Asia

SINDHI & URDU are the most beautiful and melodious languages of South Asia (sub-continent). Please don’t let them die. Do learn Siraiki, Punjabi, Balochi, Pashto, Brohvi, English and other languages but keep Sindhi and Urdu along.

Sindhi is the language of Shah, Sachal, Sami, Ayaz, love, peace and tolerance and Urdu is the language of Khusro, Mir and Galib. Learning different languages are skills. Sindhi language, Sindhi literature and rich Sindhi heritage are a treasure not only for our coming generations but for the world too. It is the moral responsibility of all to protect and promote Sindhi language and Sindhi culture and keep it alive for the global peace.

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The Pakistani society is hypocritical and it has double standards : Veena Malik didn’t do any corruption, or spread any terrorism, she even didn’t kill anyone and still she is a misfit to represent Pakistan, but the killer Mumtaz Quadri is fit to represent Pakistan!?

Pakistani Actress Slams Cleric for Criticism

Associated Press Writer Munir Ahmed contributed to this report.

ISLAMABAD (AP) — A Pakistani actress castigated for appearing to cuddle with an Indian actor on a reality show lashed out at a Muslim cleric who had criticized her during a widely watched television exchange this week.

The unusual outburst, punctuated by tears, came at a sensitive time in a country where Islamic fundamentalism is spreading and liberals are increasingly afraid to express their views.

“What is your problem with me? You tell me your problem!” an angry Veena Malik asked the Muslim scholar, who accused her of insulting Islam.

Earlier this month, a liberal Pakistani governor was shot dead for opposing the country’s harsh laws against blasphemy. In the aftermath, his killer was cheered as a hero among many in the public, shocking the country’s small liberal establishment.

Malik, 26, participated recently on Bigg Boss, an Indian version of “Big Brother.” Clips of the show on the Internet include ones in which she appears cozy with Indian actor Ashmit Patel. Those scenes, and her involvement with a show in Pakistan’s archrival India, prompted criticism online and on the air.

“You have insulted Pakistan and Islam,” Mufti Abdul Qawi accused her on the Express TV channel talk show via a television link. The exchange first aired Friday and then again Saturday.

A furious Malik shot back, saying Qawi targeted her because she is a woman, reminding him that the Quran admonishes men not to stare at a woman’s beauty beyond a first glance, and telling him there were bigger problems in Pakistan, including the alleged rape of children at mosques.

During the exchange, Qawi admitted he had not seen the clips of the show but had heard about it from others.

“What does your Islam say, mufti sir?” the actress asked. “You issue edicts on the basis of hearsay.”

Malik said she had read the Quran and she knew what lines not to cross as a Muslim as well as an entertainer in South Asia. She pointed out that she never kissed Patel, for instance.

“I am a Muslim woman, and I know my limits,” she said. The cleric seemed unable to respond to her flood of words.

Malik’s fierce outburst sparked a barrage of comments on Twitter. While some writers said they didn’t agree with her and one called her a “porn star,” others said she was brave for standing up to the Pakistani clerical establishment, especially when such an act can mean personal danger.

Wrote one supporter: “The only way to talk to these bloody clerics is to talk down to them. Veena Malik did just that, and how. Good for her!”

Source – http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2011/01/22/world/asia/AP-AS-Pakistan-Actress-vs-Cleric.html?_r=2&ref=asia

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Courtesy: Express TV (Front Line with Kamran Shahid, guest Veena Malik, Jan. 21, 2011)

via – ZemTVYou Tube Link – 1, 2

Music for Life : Beethoven for the Indus Valley

Another big humanitarian event being organized by George Mathew, a South Asian New Yorker. Hope you can attend. Below is our press release and a list of the South Asians involved with the concert.

Beethoven for the Indus (Sindhu) Valley. BEETHOVEN’S NINTH SYMPHONY at CARNEGIE HALL. FOR LIFE AND RENEWAL IN PAKISTAN AFTER THE 2010 FLOODS. Who: Music for Life International Inc. and American Pakistan Foundation,

George Mathew, Conductor, Glenn Dicterow, Concertmaster, Laquita Mitchell, Soprano, Margaret Lattimore, Mezzo-soprano, Sean Pannikar, Tenor, Morris, Robinson, Bass. What: Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony. When: January 31, 2011 at 8pm. Where: Stern Auditorium/Perelman Stage at Carnegie Hall. Tickets: Tickets are $35 – $199. For information or to purchase tickets, Carnegie Hall Box Office, or online at www.carnegiehall.org.

Continue reading Music for Life : Beethoven for the Indus Valley

Bhit Shah

Sindh for grant of visas to Indian intellectuals

Karachi – Sindh Culture Minister Sassui Palijo said on Sunday that she had approached Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi for issuing visas to the poets, writers and intellectuals from India and other South Asian countries who wanted to participate in the 267th annual Urs of Sufi poet Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai.

She said a similar facility was granted to the participants of the recently held International Urdu Conference.

Ms Palijo said this during a meeting of officials of her department to review the arrangements of the annual Urs.

She said her department would erect a monument of Shah Abdul Latif at Sea

View in Karachi, while a cultural village would be set up at Bhit Shah on the occasion of the Urs. “A round-the-clock Sufi Mehfil will also be organised.”

Secretary Culture Ilmuddin Bulo apprised the minister of arrangements, including face-lifting of the historical Karrar lake, setting up of 12 different entrance points and security arrangements. …

Read more : The News

A former CIA officer, Bruce Riedel warns against a possible coup in Pakistan

Deadly Embraces

An interview with Bruce Riedel, senior fellow at the Brookings Institution

By Interview conducted by Constantino Xavier

A former CIA officer, Bruce Riedel has been a close observer of the radical developments that South Asia has witnessed since 2001. In this interview with The Majalla, Riedel explores different scenarios for Afghanistan in 2015, warns against a possible coup in Pakistan, and highlights Al-Qaeda’s profile as an intelligent organization. …

Read more : THE MAJALLA

Bin Yameen “Notorious as the ”Butcher of Swat” killed in drone attack

Bin Yameen negotiated peace deal before American missile killed him

Notorious as the ”Butcher of Swat” in the Pakistani military circles for his merciless nature, Al-Qaeda commander Bin Yameen (also known as Ibn-e-Amin) was ready to strike a ceasefire deal with the Pakistani security forces to divert fighting to neighbouring Afghanistan when he was killed last week in an attack by US drone aircraft.

Yameen, the chief of operations in northwest Pakistan’s Awat Valley and the chief of the Tora Bora Brigade, one of the six brigades in Al-Qaeda’s Shadow Army called a meeting of other insurgent commanders but his movement was tracked by American intelligence.

His aim was to broaden operations in the Khyber district as well as in the Afghan province of Nangarhar to close down the NATO supply route.

Bin Yameen’s death has indicated a strange dimension in the South Asian war on terror theatre where American drones have successfully eliminated the big number of the vertical command of Al-Qaeda and its affiliated group leaders, but has developed a new situation in which thousands of freshly trained men have split in to small cliques, after the killings of their commanders. This is the most little known aspect behind the much boasted American drone strike successes in the AfPak war theatre. …

Read more : Asia Despatch

SOUTH ASIAN PERSPECTIVE ON REGIONAL STABILITY

Toronto, Canada : International Center for Peace and Democracy (ICPD) is a Toronto based think tank advocating secular democracy and peace in South Asia . Executive Director of ICPD, Muhammad Mumtaz Khan, who comes from Pakistan, administered Kashmir (PAK), has a thirty-year experience in the field of rights’ advocacy. Currently, he also represents International Kashmir Alliance (IKA) and All Parties National Alliance (APNA) in the European Parliament, North America and the United Nations.

Continue reading SOUTH ASIAN PERSPECTIVE ON REGIONAL STABILITY

Speech of Dr. Zafar Baloch (BHRC) to the conference on South Asia

The conference on South Asia was organized by International Center for Peace & Democracy (ICFPD) in collaboration with Baloch Human Rights Council (Canada). The conference took place at Hotel Radisson Toronto, Canada on December 11, 2010.

SOUTH ASIAN PERSPETIVE ON REGIONAL STABILITY THE ROLE OF THE STATE: DEMOCRACY, DICTATORSHIP, AND EXTREMISM

ICFPD

Following is the speech delivered by Dr. Zafar Baloch, president of Baloch Human Rights council (Canada) in the conference.

Continue reading Speech of Dr. Zafar Baloch (BHRC) to the conference on South Asia

THE ROLE OF THE STATE: DEMOCRACY, DICTATORSHIP, AND EXTREMISM

SOUTH ASIAN PERSPETIVE ON REGIONAL STABILITY

THE ROLE OF THE STATE: DEMOCRACY, DICTATORSHIP, AND EXTREMISM

South Asia is an intricate web of diverse cultures and socio-political systems with a history of invasions and colonialism. While the invading armies of Greeks, Persians, Arabs, and Mongols have left their mark on the land and its peoples; it was the European colonial powers, particularly the British that gave the region its modern political outlook and the problems that come with it. The departure of British colonial power with the division of subcontinent along communal lines ushered new era of unending disputes and tensions. The region is now the hub of global terrorism, extremism, and militarism.

ICFPD is hosting a full day discourse on the questions of extremism, terrorism, and conflicts that have plagued South Asia and the neighbouring areas for decades. We are inviting the best minds to investigate and examine the correlation between state politics, extremism, and terrorism. Analysing the role of state in advancing or curbing extremism and terrorism is often underestimated or downplayed and requires careful examination to understand possible options and barriers in dealing with it. Political systems, functioning democracy, and military dictatorships play a significant role in either confronting or promoting armed conflicts and insurgencies based on the nature and the interests of the states involved.

Speakers: Bob Rae, MP Libral (Farmar Premier of Ontario), Tarek Fatah political activist, writer, and broadcaster, Derek Lee, MP Libral, Kamran Bokhari, Hans Bathija, Dr. Zafar Boluch, Senge Sering (Gilgit Baltistan National Congress)

For more information : ICFPD

Pakistani economist Mahbub ul Haq was particularly concerned about Pakistan, and India. Both were well down in his index, below even Cameroon and Equatorial Guinea. South Asia, he wrote in 1995, is sinking “into a quagmire of human deprivation and despair”. He was shocked that it had fallen behind sub-Saharan Africa, to become the most deprived region in the world.

Mahbub ul Haq, a heretic among economists, died on July 16th 1998, aged 64.

…… Mr Haq said he was not sure whether the countries of South Asia had the political will to cut their arms bills and finance their “essential human goals”. In what he called his “intellectual journey” he had moved from idea to idea. In his World Bank days he had on his desk a notice which said, “It is too late to agree with me: I’ve changed my mind.” Critics said it showed his lack of judgment; admirers praised his flexibility. It was probably just a sign of his charm.

To read full article : Economist

India’s dream of super power-dom

by B. R. GOWANI

Life has really changed in one decade! In 2000 the then President Bill Clinton, paid a five-hour visit to Pakistan (in an unmarked plane) where he lectured the citizens live on the national TV. In India, he spent five days. This was pre 9/11. Clinton’s visit to South Asia then seemed like Gora Bapa was in the land of Kali Mata, i.e., White Father in the land of (goddess) Mother Kali. …

…. Now India wants to be the Super Power with US as its role model. The positive factors for this status include: India’s territorial size, its population, the increasing pace of its technological advances, the entrepreneurship of its people, and the increasing interest of the west in its fashion and movie industry, particularly the Mumbai based Bollywood film industry …

To read full article : Globeistan

Where we are —Yasser Latif Hamdani

As a long-term ally of both the US and China and having a shared past with India, Pakistan can either be doomed by history or use it wisely to create a state that exists for the benefit of its people

Obama’s warming up to India has not gone down well with our super patriots, and rightly so. Despite 40 odd years of service to the US and now a decade-long alliance that has cost Pakistan many a life and limb, the US has now established a long-term strategic paradigm in South Asia, which sees India as a close ally and Pakistan as a nuisance at best.

Instead of going back to the drawing board and trying to understand why it is that we are increasingly unable to compete with our eastern neighbour, our super patriots have invented another self-defeating narrative. They want us to engage another 50 years in another mini-cold war around an imagined zero-sum game that pits Pakistan and China against the US and India. Even if the Americans were naïve enough to hold such ‘strategic’ hogwash as a legitimate view, neither the Indians nor the Chinese are going to buy into it. Contrary to what a naïve New York Times columnist recently wrote, the Indians know that the big truck their friend in Washington owns has a flat tyre and no spare.

This is the Asian century and enough people in India realise it, which is why there will be no confrontation between China and India — at least any confrontation that mirrors the Soviet-US clash. China is rising and the US is, at best, a fading power, in a position very similar to the British Empire after the Second World War. It will continue to be an important power like Britain but its sole superpower status has irrevocably been shaken. As it grows more multicultural, the melting pot will become less effective and consequently a more fractured polity is likely to hold the US back in the future. India therefore is more likely to play both sides instead of blindly jumping into bed with the Americans. Our response therefore should be similarly cautious.

That we have not thought things through is apparent even from our approach to China. There is little or no recognition in Pakistan that China’s might is derived not from its military but its economic might. Yet how many of our institutions of higher learning have programmes in Chinese language, culture and law? None. It is not enough that Pakistan will become a conduit of energy for western China and, subsequently, an international trade route. Pakistan must realise that it will be important to China only if it remains internally stable, united and moderate. For this to happen, Pakistan must choose a pragmatic path to international geo-politics. It can no longer fool itself with some Pan-Islamic ambition and pursue a policy of Muslim interests. Our military establishment’s cynical flirtation with Islamist groups is dangerous given the Islamist rebellion in some parts of China.

Pakistan faced the full force of Chinese pressure on the Lal Masjid issue where Chinese citizens were attacked by a band of brigands who were, for the most part, seen as a ‘strategic asset’ by our establishment.

Pakistan must realign itself internally to face external challenges and seize opportunities. The reason Pakistan was respected and sought after by the Americans in the 1950s, 1960s and some part of the 1970s was because we were ideologically soft but economically and socially a strong state. By the 1980s onwards, Pakistan has been ideologically hard but economically and socially a very weak state. In doing so we have not only alienated the Americans but our trusted friends such as the Chinese and the Turks. If things continue as they are, even the Saudis will leave us in the lurch.

If — and this is an almost impossible task — Pakistan can roll back project Islam of the Ziaist variety, which requires a major overhaul of our laws, education and media, and can present itself as a moderate, democratic and internally stable state, Pakistan is ideally placed to profit from the changing global economic and political scenario. As a long-term ally of both the US and China and having a shared past with India, Pakistan can either be doomed by history or use it wisely to create a state that exists for the benefit of its people. The latter course will not only keep Pakistan united but will allow it to become one of the most prosperous nations of this century.

However, none of this can be done if ‘independent’ courts in Pakistan sentence to death a mother of five for alleged blasphemy. In the coming days, brace yourself as the entire world condemns us for our barbaric treatment of women, and rightly so. We must make up our minds. Are we going to be a medieval dystopia that is a pariah country like the Islamic Republic of Iran — which is absolutely the worst place to live in, I can assure you — or are we going to be a normal state that the world can do business with? Those of you who question the abolition of the Blasphemy Law on religious grounds must be reminded of what a wise man once said, “Is this the first time in the history of legislation in this country that this council has been called upon to override Musalman Law or modify it to suit the time? The council has overridden and modified the Musalman Law in many respects.” The wise man in question was our founding father, Mr Mohammed Ali Jinnah. He had also cautioned against the misuse of the original Blasphemy Law — Section 295 of the Penal Code — by saying, “We must also secure this very important and fundamental principle that those who are engaged in historical works, those who are engaged in the ascertainment of truth and those who are engaged in bona fide and honest criticisms of a religion shall be protected.” …

Read more : Daily Times

Voices of Kashmir event

Washington : Over the past decade, Pakistan and India have both proposed measures to help resolve the Kashmir dispute. The bilateral nature of the dispute, however, has at times overshadowed those indigenous voices which continue to demand that the claims and interests of India and Pakistan in the Kashmir dispute must not come at the cost of Kashmir’s history and individual identity that existed even prior to the 1947 partition.

United States Institute of Peace (USIP) invites you to a discussion on the VOICES OF KASHMIR withAmbassador Yusuf Buch on Thursday, November 18, 2010 from 10:00 am to 11:30 a.m. in Academy Plenary B. Mr. Buch will present a Kashmiri perspective on the dispute during his talk, shedding light on the history of the contested territory and reflecting on what a just and sustainable solution to the dispute may entail. Mr. Buch is a former Pakistani Ambassador and Director of a Special Advisory Group at the UN. Given his involvement in the Kashmir issue both as an observer and policy adviser for the past 70 years, Mr. Buch’s presentation will offer a unique perspective on the Kashmiri question.

Indo-Pak Youth Festival for Peace: LAHORE FEB 2011

– “Peace cannot be kept by force. It can only be achieved by understanding” – Albert Einstein.

Youth make- up one fifth of the South- Asian demography. Most often we see youth as victims or perpetrators of violence. History is witness to the fact that youth as members of an ever changing, dynamic and energetic group in societies play a crucial role in transforming conflict ridden societies into democratic and peaceful societies. This is a critical mass which needs to be involved when it comes to transformation of violent relationships, structures, attitudes and behaviors towards peace building.

Continue reading Indo-Pak Youth Festival for Peace: LAHORE FEB 2011

India is worse than Pakistan on gender equality

by Aradhana Sharma

NEW DELHI: Believe it or not when it comes to gender inequities India fares worse than Pakistan. In fact, the country fares lower than all other countries in South Asia save Afghanistan. These are the findings of the 2010 Human Development Report released by the United Nations Development Programme on Thursday as per its Gender Inequality Index.

So while Pakistan may be in the news for its treatment of women and might have become a hot bed for international women’s activism, it certainly seems to know how to take care of its mothers better. On maternal mortality, India — with its abysmal record — trails Pakistan. …
Read more :  The Times of India

We, the murderers! – Dr Manzur Ejaz

…. Our media and elite are obsessed with sexy political issues of terrorism or confrontation between the government and judiciary while the foundation of society is being eaten by the termite of impoverishment and meaninglessness. All sections of the present ruling elite — governing or sitting in the opposition — have no clue about the fundamental problems of Pakistani society; it will take a real messiah to deal with them.
To Read full article : Wichaar

Blast at Dargah Shah Ghazi: When will Muslims come out of denial?

It has become the norm in the South Asian Muslim society to act in denial of our own wrongdoing and blame all the evil deeds of terrorists on the US or India. The Taliban and other militant outfits have totally radicalised the Muslim society in Pakistan, so much so that religious intolerance to them has become synonymous with Islam and righteousness. Sectarian violence has become the order of the day in this so-called Islamic society. Taliban, influenced by Wahabism has made dargahs their target. Dargahs of Data Ganjbakhsh, Abdullah Shah Gazi and now Baba Farid Ganjshakar have been targeted by the Taliban but the middle class intelligentsia and the media in Pakistan loves to live in denial.  This will not help extract the Pakistani society from the morass it has thrown itself in. The Urdu article is published here with its English translation as a prime example. ….Read more : newagaislam

Kashmir Issue Raised at the British House of Lords

London, U.K. October 15, 2010. All Parties Parliamentary Group on Kashmir (APPGK) held a special meeting at the House of Lords to asses the situation in Indian administraed Kashmir. Lord Nazir Ahmed, Member, British House of Lords and the Chairman of the APPGK said that the issue of Kashmir is the issue of self-determination which was guaranteed under successive United Nations Security Council resolutions. And the self-determination of peoples is a basic principle of the United Nations Charter which has been reaffirmed in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and applied countless times to the settlement of many international conflicts.

Continue reading Kashmir Issue Raised at the British House of Lords

Pakistan and India: apples and oranges? – Dr Manzur Ejaz

…. Most Pakistanis and Indians equate Pakistan with the Muslim world and start idealising or criticising it, as if religion is the single most important denominator. Pakistanis project themselves to be part of the so-called ummah in self-denial of their own real history to idealise their past and Indians find it convenient to put Pakistan in a religious category and demonise it. Pakistanis believe they are heirs of Muslim rule and their opponents believe in the same notion as well. In short, Pakistani and Indian nationalists agree on this point.

The fact of the matter is that most of the Muslims living in Pakistan are converts of lower layers of different castes. Till the time of the partition their status as a lowly mass of peasants, artisans and labourers continued. Muslim feudal lords mostly owned land and urban centres were completely run by the Hindu elite. Muslims of the present Pakistan had hardly any representation in the business community, bureaucracy, or education. During the entire Muslim rule, their status remained similar to the untouchables who converted to Christianity during the British rule. Therefore, other than a small percentage of Urdu speakers who may have come from the old ruling Muslim elite, it is misleading for the Pakistanis to idealise themselves as heirs to Muslim ruling elites who had descended from Central Asia, Afghanistan, Iran and the Middle East. …

Read more >> WICHAAR