A Jirga in a hamlet of Kohistan, Bando Baidar, recently declared four women and two men (fornicators) and damned them to death after they were purportedly caught on videotape singing and dancing together at a local wedding bash. Fortunately for the accused, law enforcement agencies in the village have intervened and have declared the death sentence null and void.
Reports have surfaced that the alleged people have been already killed but there seems to be confusion whether the women are alive or dead as some reports say that they are dead while the government denies it. Hopefully, the reports of them being killed are untrue, however from this whole development, one thing is clear that this Jirga system needs to be revised because mostly, the judges in these Jirga are ignorant and brutal individuals that know nothing about Islamic laws.
Ever wonder what is the real agenda of Taliban and why have they disrupted the peace of the whole world or what is their take on the recent developments, such as negotiations with US or a high bounty on leader of DPC Hafiz Saeed By US? Don’t need to worry, as now Taliban have added a query section on their website (Voice of Jihad) through which anyone can ask them any sort of questions. Not only this, but back-fence talks are that they have adopted social media as well and have twitter accounts where they regularly converse with each other and with their followers.
Inquiries have already started pouring in on their queries section and the page is actively being monitored on daily or weekly basis. What is more heartbreaking and lethal is the fact that the section is usually filled with the praises of militants by their supporters, which shows that there are still people who think these psychopaths are heroes and on the right way. When would these people realize that these miscreants are nothing more than infidels?
Difa-e-Pakistan Council (DPC) carried out yet another rally, and this time in the heart of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Peshawar. Interestingly, this rally was held just few days after the civil society in Peshawar took to the streets to protest against the Difa-e-Pakistan Council, demanding that a ban be imposed and the council be held responsible for the death of three million people.
Despite our government warnings to the banned outfits, DPC have now held rallies in each of the major cities of Pakistan. This all has raised few serious questions relating to the authority of our Government. When it cannot even stop them from carrying out processions and sit outs, how can it solve other significant issues, our country is facing?
On Monday, participants from different religious parties and banned outfits gathered under the so called Difa-e Pakistan Council (DPC) umbrella at Islamabad. Banners were explicitly strung up days before the programmed rally, advertising the event. It was actually surprising that despite the warnings by the government, and a bold move of suspending a station house officer earlier this month for allowing a banned group to hold a public procession, by our beloved interior minister, they were actually allowed to carry on with the event. Will our interior minister now be suspending the SHO responsible for this rally as well? If the state of Pakistan, with all its might cannot stop them from rallying in the capital, how can we expect to win the war on terror? Most importantly, how can we expect the world to trust us, when the extremist groups roam and operate within the country with impunity?
Recently, Qari Yaqoob of Pakistan Defense Council (PDC), while speaking at the rally in Karachi, accused the media of following a Western agenda and warned of literally grave consequences, due to their sudden abstinence from coverage of events arranged and participated by the organization. In response a senior anchorperson Hamid Mir in his TV show Capital Talk also warned the militant group of a bleak outcome. Here we have to remind ourselves that according to law the media cannot give exposure to banned outfits, but until recently the group and its leaders seemed to be the apple of the mediaâ€™s eyes. Now that the media has finally refused coverage, both are at daggers drawn and the media instead of showing restraint has stooped to the level of the radicals themselves.
In a recent statement the interior minister announced that the SHO of the concerned police station will have to face the consequences, if a banned organization initiates any activity in their jurisdiction. In fact station house officer of a police station in Islamabad has already been suspended on this premise, where Sipah-e Sahaba held a procession in G-9 sector of Islamabad. Is the government really serious this time for dealing with these banned organizations or is this only superficial? According to news reports the above mentioned procession was organized by the group after acquiring permission from the administration. If the machinery of the state is giving these banned groups a free hand, how can a SHO stand in their way?
If anyone has any doubts regarding the aims and objectives of Hizb ut-Tahrir (HuT), perhaps the news from Bangladesh will clear these doubts; where a group of army officers, linked with the organization attempted to mount a coup. This is not new for HuT, as they already made headlines in Pakistan, when the army arrested senior officers in June of previous year, for having alleged links with the organization and also concocting a coup plot. Unfortunately in Pakistan, Hizb ut-Tahrir and various other radical organizations, despite being banned are carrying out their activities, without even going through the pain of keeping them covert. If the authorities are not willing to stop these organizations, then it is time that the citizens should adopt measures to discourage the radicals from taking more hold.
Someone is getting all the limelight in the upcoming rally of Pakistan Defense Council (PDC) at Rawalpindi on 22nd January, 2012 and that someone is no other than Hafiz Saeed himself. Guess where are the banners displayed, bearing his prominent image along with the picture of a leading politician? Well of course, in the capital territory of Islamabad. I do not think that the authorities should be just concerned with this development instead they should be horrified and should be scrambling to take appropriate measures to counter this return of radicalization. In its place, one finds them in deep slumber and untroubled.
Jamia Hafsa is back and under the same administration, while being initiated on a much larger scale. According to news reports 20 kanals of land in H-11/4 has been provided by the government for the seminary, perhaps 40 times larger than the original site. This seems to defy any logic, where radicals had occupied government land and are now being compensated for that. I have goose bumps while recounting how the burqa clad groups roamed through Islamabad, imposing a parallel law in the capital and the resultant operation against Lal Masjid. I fear that down the road those days are coming back and through our silence now, we are actually paving the road for another such catastrophe.
Why does terror sweep over me, when I observe the coverage of the â€œDifa-e Pakistanâ€ rally in Lahore? It seems that the genie is out of the bottle now and radical elements are now flexing their muscles. Jamaat-ud Dawa (JuD), an internationally notorious entity, probably second to Al-Qaeda, openly participated in this rally along with other mainstream religious political parties. The event did not take place at an unknown street corner; rather the venue was Minar-e Pakistan in the metropolitan of Lahore. Added to this was the extravagant media coverage, where special attention was focused on the participation of this particular group. All this happened under the very nose of the authorities, where the rules issued by the district administration were all set aside by the organizers. Specifically the one forbidding any banned organization from participating in the event. The impression disseminated here, was not only for defiance to international laws but also served to undermine the authority of the state.