Justice for Minorities: Pipe Dream or Possibility?


Faiza Mirza in Dawn (via Hussein Ibish):

Amidst numerous incidents of chaos, anarchy, hatred and fundamentalism, finding solace in hope of a peaceful future is the only choice left for many people living in the country. It is during such times when great leaders like Mahatama Gandhi are truly missed, who sacrificed their lives not only for the betterment of the society at large, but also fought day in and out for human rights. He dedicated his life to peace making and recently his birth anniversary, which was declared the International Day of Non-Violence by the United Nation, became a reason for Pakistan and India to stand united by paying respect to the man who propagated the philosophy of unity and peace in the most violent of times. It surely is a day such as this which give me hope for better times — times in which human rights are mutually respected and accepted beyond borders, religions and cultures.

Unfortunately, each act of communal rioting makes the sacrifices of the likes of Mahatma Gandhi go in vain. The act of an individual should not be taken as an excuse to instigate violence against other communities. Following the riots that stranded Karachi a few days ago, a group of armed assailants vandalised a Hindu temple on the outskirts of Karachi.

The attackers allegedly, broke all the religious statues, tore a copy of the Bhagwat Gita and stole all the jewelry belonging to Hindu women, leaving the helpless and poor caretaker in tears. As expected, the miscreants were able to escape from the scene; however, a case was registered against the culprits under the blasphemy law. Yes you read correctly, if caught, they will be tried under the blasphemy law — which has previously always been used against the minorities of Pakistan and for the first time will be referred to protect the aforementioned community which comprises less than two per cent of our population.