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Over the past 4 years people of intellect and reason have been constantly battling the befuddled and blinded masses who follow the slogan of freedom and democracy without even knowing what it stands for. For them, democracy means “freedom to do whatever they want after they come into power” instead, what they should be thinking about is that democracy is just another form of dictatorship, specifically tailored to the tyrant’s needs to keep a people “happy” in their enslavement.

In the ensuing months and years after which the PPP had come into power back in 2008, Pakistan saw the worst of corruption it has ever witnessed in its 66 years of history. Although one can also present an equally strong argument about the corruption and incompetence of the current prime minister of Pakistan, the point stands that as long as lordship and land-owner mafia remain strong, Pakistan will never see the light of day.

The people of Pakistan often more than not go after something that is illusionary and short-lasting, lacking insight and vision severely, our nation has been plagued by this disease since we had come into existence. We have been continuously bombarded with disappointment after disappointment, fake “leaders”, opportune “leaders”, “Islamist leaders”, you name it; everything is on the table.

The problem isn’t only with the people themselves, but also in the people who claim to be their leaders. In a brutalization of the system, these so called leaders only exploit the name of good father Muhammad Ali Jinnah and his strive to make Pakistan the greatest “Bulwark of Islam” and the most robust and active nation on Earth by giving it the gift of Pakistan. They do this by cheap slogans of “freedom and fraternity” or “housing, shelter, and food” all to gain a few more morsels of power on the seat of Islamabad.

However, people tend to think that the problem is outside themselves as well: another anathema worth annihilating from their minds. They think themselves either perfect or innocent of the charge of treason-against, lying, betraying, delusional thinking, and stabbing Pakistan in the back. In the most recent election, more than 300 people lost their lives in Karachi alone, while the rest of the country’s murders are unaccounted for. This crime, unbeknownst to the people of Pakistan, is on their hands. By refusing reason, opting to follow treacherous, criminal law designed to enslave them through an outdated system (democracy), they have proved once again that they still have not yet come out of this state of shock and surprise, either that, or they are brutally ignorant of the things happening in and around their country.

It is then no surprise that even the outsiders like Mr. Declan Walsh are openly advocating breaking Baluchistan away from Pakistan on the behest of the American government. His most recent article in the guardian outlines and enforces nothing but lies and propaganda on which the Baluchistan campaign has been built upon.

People like these and more are now in the open completely set loose upon Pakistan and its good citizens (who strive every day in hopes of redeeming themselves one day as a living and vibrant nation which (in my opinion also) deserves a full chance of being independent from outside influence and showing the world what it can truly do once set free from outside influences and focuses only on what its founding fathers, and true leaders have set in motion) all because a few “wise” nutcases in Islamabad decided that it was a good idea to let the country go to the dogs when it is under complete and total collapse and a state of anarchy and chaos which stems from a war which has spilled over from Afghanistan directly into Pakistan.

The right thing to do at this point for Pakistan is to admit its mistake, and work towards building stronger characters who are unflinching in their resolve, bravest in the world, and tougher than “Valerian Steel.”


Typical PTI lover's Reaction reading positve criticism on PTI

Typical PTI lover’s Reaction reading positive criticism on PTI

Biggest problem in Pakistan’s Society is that, we find blaming and questioning others work quite amusing, making fun of others has become our National Sport. As a Responsible Citizen of Pakistan I believe that one should not question anyone’s loyalty if he is not sure of himself and that too without knowing their intentions.

Unfortunately, People in Pakistan judge others character by their liking and disliking. We bully everyone we think is not favoring to our ears and eyes, which is one big reason why we have not produced Iconic Personalities/Leaders in last 66 Years as much as other Countries/Nations have produced. Even after 66 Years we are not acting as a Nation but group of people forcefully sharing the same land and that is why we are still far behind from the Nations that came into existence way after us. Raising questions on others is very easy but it takes a lot of courage to work and keep things straight.

I had been posting different material since morning I admit most of them were against one Party but that’s what most of you had been doing for over months now. Aren’t you? So why it caused you so much pain when someone posted something that you didn’t like. I would like to point out PTI Fans particularly who had been bullying me since morning. I am not one of them to give up on anything so soon. What keeps me moving is not one man or his attracting slogans but a Mission in Life. Mission is greater than any personality and that’s what I learn from the Life of The Great Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah. This is what our Pakistanis need to understand. Pakistan was made by Quaid-e-Azam, as soon as he died our enemies claimed that Pakistan will not be able to sustain for more than 6 months and will come back to India but nothing like that happened. Sixty five Years have passed,  we are growing and we’re moving, we exist and we will remain on the face of earth as long as we are destined.My point of telling you all this is to make you all understand that do not follow personalities but follow their Mission.

Meanwhile people were out on roads Protesting without being so sure for what they were going out there, I gathered and submitted several applications/videos of rigging to the Election Commission of Pakistan without any discrimination within Political Parties.

I posted material against MQM/PTI and MQM friends didn’t respond like the way PTI Fans did, not all of them but some of them. I have a lot of Friends who are PTI supporters and they had been agreeing to me on all this and I know they’ll bereading this but what I really liked about them was they supportedand disagreed both gracefully which I really liked.  All PTI Fans are not same, there are some really great people that I know and I met. I am addressing those PTI Fans who attack without realizing that they’re doing wrong to others.

Whenever I see them doing all this to the people who disagree with PTI Policies I realize that I was so damn right about PTI,based on my personal judgment and with the help of some good advisors that I am blessed with and above all Guidance of Allah. I stopped supporting PTI for good because I felt they’re too blind, they’re deaf and their eyes are completely shut from the reality. Healthy & Productive Criticism is good as it at least helps me improve and I certainly cannot help those who want me to become another “YES MEN” like them.

Stop judging others when you yourself have no clue of what other person stands for. Calling someone sold out, calling him with different names, questioning his affiliations and bullying him for his views and that too for no good reason doesn’t make you any different from those who always made fun of the people who stood up in the history and their own people made funof them, but history tells us that such daring people ended up setting a history and no one know their critics today. Your discouragement adds more passion in me, motivates me more. People who’ll remain in dark will not only do injustice to themselves but also to their generations. Stop me if you can from doing good and I’ll not stop but I’ll definitely help you seek the right way whenever you need without thinking how ignorant you were towards me as this is what our World and Religion both teaches us Tolerance, Respect and Humanity.

With the help of Like Minded People I will continue my Mission I will continue spreading awarenessamong the masses. Those who’ll learn something out of that, I consider the job done and those who’ll continue staying in the state of denial will remain where they are. Choice is yours and the process of learning is mutual so I get to learn a lot from all of you as I am not some Mr. Perfect here!!

I have seen PTI supporters comparing Imran Khan with Quaid-e-Azam. Trust me you offend millions like me by doing that. Without getting into the details let me share you one major difference between Imran Khan and Quaid-e-Azam. Quaid-e-Azam made a Nation and then assigned them the mission on contrary Imran Khan created a vote bank andnot a Nation and if you think making his vote bank was his making of Nation then you are completely wrong. Quaid-e-Azam never asked for a vote to come into power and then make a Nation but for a creation of a Country on contrary Imran Khan asked for a vote to bring his Party into power and then make a Nation for a Country. Totally Opposite (I know you will raise questions, how could he do that before coming into power, so the answer is same way like the Great Quaid did. Complete the first step of making Nation and then follow the other steps).

Last but not the least I work for Pakistan, I don’t work for any Political Party and even if you will judge me with that, I’ll give up on you as helpless case. For me it will always be Pakistan First !! 🙂

May Allah show us all the right path and keep those on who already have it !!

Signing Off,

Amaan Tareen.

You can reach me directly at amaantareen@gmail.com to share your feedback . Don’t think I am PML-N paid blogger or in your thesaurus a “Noora


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October 31, 2010

A lot of people after reading this may assume as If I am projecting something against my own society and this may cause damage to our image Globally but I think this is a need of time that we need to correct ourselves as it’s a “ Do or Die “ situation for us. The root cause of all our major problems in Pakistan are self made sociocultural values and all these aspects of human life are intermingled ,deficient of all these we are not worthy to be called a nation, but just a group of people occupying some land.

Today after looking at most of the problems in our society I feel that we are not heading towards the moral values, vision of the Perfect Society that we had 1400 years ago. We are in a state of confusion, are we suffering from intellectual repression? As a nation we are morally dead and this is the bitter truth, the worse that can happen to any nation. We have always forgotten the lessons taught to us by the history, we posses capability to rediscover our Patriotism to rebuild a Nation.

We have become a chronic complainer and an aggressive critic of the rampant corruption in the bureaucracy, unclear foreign policy, bribery and government inefficiency. But how about us? Are we morally upright? We also have the same weakness and the same petty quarrels that existed between our leaders. After the gruesome and barbaric Sialkot incident, I deduced that we have no the right to criticize the evil in the government, because we just watched, while these people freely committing a crime in a maniacal and monstrous way, there are hundreds of people who are loosing their lives in Pakistan but we seem less bothered about them.  A Muslim by Religion is killing his fellow Muslim Brother/Sister and we are doing nothing except acting as a silent Spectator of all these events that happening right in front of our eyes. There is no doubt that we love to criticize Western Nations for their grieve violation of Human rights and yet we could not even make a stand nor we could show sympathy at least to those who were victimized. We all have suffered a moral decay. We have remained stagnant, we cease to signify as the masses that could break the past and challenge the establishment, rebuilding the society, acting rather than talking.

We want good politicians but we do not have a right political culture the political structure of dictatorship have not been completely transformed and even if we are aware of all these facts, we always voted for the wrong choice,  without knowing the true essence and power of our right of suffrage, but voted for them because we felt that that was a right choice to be made. We criticize our Armed Forces but still we want them to save us from our enemies, we want them to come in power and save us from the corrupt politicians but as soon as they leave, we branded them traitors or dictators. We want honest people to come forward but we always fail because we do not have a strong and credible political system that can bring good people to the front, or we do not know how to identify their existence. We want someone to take the lead but again we have a ridiculous credibility issues, and highest level of mistrust, or we try to find some controversy related to them we always have a “crab mentality”. So, we can pull them down and preventing them to perform their duty of serving the people.

We need change but first it should come from within us. We have to be faithful to our historical aspirations and experience, rooted as it were, in our realistic demands; we are in many ways and under changing circumstances, still waging a struggle for change. But Always remember that;

To bring the change you have to change FIRST!

We want our rights, but we fail to identify what those rights are. We often make complaints about the issues but we never try to figure out the actual reasons behind such issues. We want revolution in the country but we do not realize that

“ The revolution is not an apple that falls when it is ripe. You have to make it fall ” – Che Guevara 

We cease to abide within the precept of Islam the way the Prophet (P.B.U.H) admonished us. All of these chaos and miseries will not end as long as we do not remain faithful. I believe that Allah has already given us the direction; it’s only up to us to articulate our faith and follow that direction. If you have no idea on how to overcome all this, then read the Quran thoroughly to understand the purpose for the creation of Pakistan , only then you will come to know why we came into being and why  despite all the hardship and torments we are still safe, The lyrics of our National Anthem also reverberates that purpose.

We emerged as a nation under the great leadership of Quaid-e-Azam; we were conceived from the mind of Allama Muhammad Iqbal a great philosopher of the east. Today, we have our own leaders to whom we like and to whom we are ready to defend but not those who helped us get liberated from the Dark Rule of Great Britain and Indians, we are always up for responding to any allegation on our Favorite Politician just because we like them and we defame others to whom we don’t like. I see a lot of people have forgotten about their greatness and that is why we let every Pakistani Politician play with the Name and Vision of The Great Quaid and Iqbal. Few years have passed PPP Co-Chairman and President of Pakistan Asif Ali Zardari called Quaid-e-Azam a Non-Graduate” what happened to our national aspiration then? Where our National Integrity and Possessive Attitude go when such radicalizing statements comes out from the people who have no public standing? Why do we only protest and react when a Politician of our choice gets radicalized? Just because we like them? And we agree to what he says no matter he is right or wrong but we opt to defend him, why? Because from the core, we ourselves are equally corrupt, we may go out of the way to defend the Politician we like but not to those who laid the Foundations of this Land and made a Nation before putting any demands? At such instances where goes our Historical, Political and Cultural Awareness?

We should have demanded President Zardari to apologize for using inappropriate words for the founder of the Nation, but we didn’t neither did any of us came out on road. All this doesn’t end here as we do not dare to stop it when that should be and later keep regretting for not doing what we were supposed to do. We always forget that the Nations that forget their real heroes will cease to exist for long. We all should be vigilant in every circumstances that compel, confused aggravate or twist our heroes character or open them to dangerous and self-serving opportunists. There are necessary evils, some done deliberately but with regret, sometimes without. But there are also plain betrayals for selfish ends which are not only unforgettable but unforgivable. We have to take charge of our destiny to free ourselves from the clout of Imperialism and from all the vestiges of oppressions and to take pride in our historical heritage. One does not need to be wealthy and highly educated to identify with the change that we want to achieve. We are all in these together. Together we can act different possibilities, a consolidated power in re-establishing our identity of being Pakistani and to participate in rebuilding our beloved Nation. A Nation, moving forward, armed with Faith, posses Discipline and equipped with Unity! Pakistan Zindabad!

Closing Remarks:

Before you finish reading this, I would like to make one thing clear that this piece of writing is my personal opinion on different on-going matters; my intentions are not to demoralize anyone or deliberately target any segment of the society. The sole purpose of sharing this write up with you all is to share my view and to get some intellectual feedback from you all. The image used represents the “CHUNK” of Pakistani society that has become dead from inside that no one and nothing can wake them up from this deadly sleep of insensitivity. This is my little effort as an individual, as a media person, as a proud Pakistani to at least try and make a difference. I will continue writing more and more and will continue doing work that I believe can bring the real Change in us First and then in our Society. Long Live PAKISTAN !!!



Education that help Nations grow


25%

Twenty-five percent of Americans that start high school do not graduate. Entering the workforce without a high school diploma means an unemployment rate three-and-a-half times the rate of those with a college degree. And for those who do find full-time work, they on average earn less than half of what a college graduate makes each year.

30%

Thirty percent of high school graduates do not go on to college right after graduation. In the workforce, a high school graduate earns on average more than someone without a diploma, but still only 60 percent of what a college graduate makes each year.

43%

Forty-three percent of students who start college will not graduate in 6 years. Women graduate at a six-percent-higher rate than men within six years, and outnumber men in higher education by a ratio of 3-to-2.

How does this compare with other countries? In 2008, the U.S. high school graduation rate was lower than the rates of the United Kingdom, Switzerland, Norway, South Korea, Japan, Italy, Ireland, Germany, Finland and Denmark. That same year, the U.S. was the only developed nation where a higher percent of 55- to 64-year-olds than 25- to 34-year-olds had graduated from high school.

What about college? The U.S. once led the world in college graduates. As an example of this, Americans age 55-to-64 still lead their peers in other nations in the portion with college degrees (41 percent). But this number has flat-lined for Americans. In 2008, the same percentage of Americans age 25-to-34 and age 55-to-64 were college graduates.

Meanwhile, other nations have caught up, and some have pulled ahead. Among this younger age group, 25- to 34-year-olds, all of the following nations now have a larger percent of college graduates than the U.S.: Australia, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Ireland, Israel, Japan, South Korea, Luxembourg, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden and the United Kingdom.

This Sunday at 8pm ET, Fareed Zakaria will explore what the U.S. education system needs to do to compete in today’s world in a special edition of CNN GPS called “Restoring the America Dream: Fixing Education.”

Sources:
Education and Synthetic Work-Life Earnings Estimates. U.S. Census Bureau, Sept. 2011
Education at a Glance 2011. OECD
The Condition of Education 2011. Department of Education


For 50 years Hakim Mohammad Said and his small family used the washroom in the veranda of their modest but large house. He hardly ever spent money on the pre-partition building’s renovation – not that he had a liking for the old architecture. The progressive man simply thought such work would be a wasteful expenditure.
“Oh! So you have got the money to buy new furniture. Please, donate it to the Hamdard Foundation, we need it more there,” reminisced Sadia Rashid, his only daughter, about a conversation she had on the matter with her father.

“Hakim saheb would have been really angry if he were alive and saw the changes we have made in the house to give it a modern look,” she told The Express Tribune as she pointed to their new attached bathrooms, built by extending the rooms. But many things have not changed. The old wooden windows with high-up vents are still intact.
Born on January 9, 1920, in Delhi, Hakim Said was brought up in a traditional household. He learned Arabic, Persian, Urdu, English and studied the Holy Quran. As his forefathers had been associated with the herbal medicine business, he decided to take this treatment to new heights.

He moved to Pakistan in 1948 with his wife and daughter. They rented a room for Rs12 a month where he started the practice of Tibb. “Now I realise that he was a disciplined man. Probably that is why he was so strict,” Sadia mused.

As the only daughter and accustomed to a better lifestyle in India, Sadia took some time to adjust. “I remember the first day of school. I was being choosy about the clothes and screamed. Hakim saheb was reading the newspaper and said loudly, ‘What is [going on] here?’ I guess that was the day when being picky about clothes became least important to me.”

Hakim Said was a devout Muslim who would get up in middle of the night to offer prayers. He would recite the Quran and fast whenever he could. Yet, he did not impose his beliefs on others. “We used to go to all sort of parties, even those where alcohol was served,” she recalled, adding that her father thought it was a person’s own responsibility to refine their character.

Money was something about which Hakim Said was especially particular. Even when Sadia started accompanying him on foreign trips, he never let her buy clothes there. “I used to buy books. Brought back whole suitcases filled with [them]. But that was it. Shopping for all the other things was prohibited.”

“A white sherwani and kurta were his trademark attire. I don’t know why he used to wear the same clothes. But once he told me that it helped save time as there was no need to make a choice.”

Even when he became the governor of Sindh in 1993, Hakim Said did not move into the state residence. “He was entertaining patients even then. Most of the day, he was busy and sat with the family only at dinner.”

After practising Tibb for a few years, Hakim Said set up Hamdard Dawakhana and started manufacturing herbal medicines. Soon he converted it into a trust, sending the profits to philanthropic work. Hakim Said also taught Sadia the importance of keeping a record of the money being spent, something that helps her today as she heads the multi-billion rupee Hamdard Foundation. One of his greatest achievements was having Eastern medicine recognised at the UN as an alternate way of treating illnesses. He set up a college, which offered degrees in herbal medicine. When health minister General Burki of the Field Marshal Ayub Khan regime tried to ban Eastern medicine, Hakim Said took the protest to the people, recalls Masood Ahmed Barkati, the long time editor of Urdu-language Naunehal children’s magazine of the Hamdard Foundation.

“General Burki used to say that eastern medicine and homeopathy were quackery,” he said. “Hakim Said started writing in the newspapers, organised conferences and lobbied hard. Ultimately, Ayub Khan had to pass a law legalising eastern medicine.”

Barkati said that Hakeen Said paid especial attention to Naunehal, reading every draft before publication. “He used to say that today’s children will be tomorrow’s leaders.”

Hakeem Said was fond of Urdu poets and concerned about their financial woes. “Literary figures like Ahmed Chugtai, Ahmed Hamdani, Qamar Hashmi, Nazeer Siddiqui and Qayum Rahi all worked for Hamdard publications at one time or another. He used to hire every educated person.”

Barkati said that Hakim Said did not accumulate wealth. “He did not buy any property. He was always busy trying to find right the professionals for Hamdard University.”

Sadia started working for her father in 1981. “If you want a stake in Hamdard, then work for it,” she recalled him as saying. “I use to sit with three other girls at a small desk. Then gradually, I moved on to learn other things and was made executive coordinator.”

Sadia lost her father on October 17 in 1998 when he was shot at Arambagh Road. “He was wearing the same white clothes, had a tasbeeh in his hand and some books.” He died as he had lived

Article Source : Express Tribune

Closing Notes:

Sometimes I feel sorry for my Nation that produced real heroes and these heroes have no recognition or respect ” They come and they Go ” and nobody in Pakistan cares for them and their commendable work for Pakistan. Recently, when Steve Jobs DIED, I saw people literally crying their heart out over his death like babies do. Are we so MORALLY dead or why are we turning into a WANNABEEISH Crowd that follows a trend/culture/life style that is not their and belongs to WEST. Can we even pay a single tribute to such men who
did outstanding work for billions of human and we only feel sorrow on the death of someone who just improved communication so we can grab our I-Phones and show them to our friends, THATS IT?

Did we ever tried to find out how Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah died, who killed Nawabzada Liaqat Ali Khan (Shaheed-e-Millat), why we lost the war in 1971, Why East Pakistan became Bangladesh, Why Kashmir is still occupied by Indian Forces, Why we had to defend Russian Forces in Afghanistan (What was their objective of their war with Afghanistan), Why there is no accountability to all those men who are harming the sovereignty of Pakistan/ breaking the Constitution of Pakistan. All what we know is ” STEVE JOBS R.I.P “, just because this is how we see WEST paying tribute to their heroes.

Last but not least, I came across this song that portrays exactly where we stand today as a Nation and reflects the “Beyghairat Attitude ” of ours and least concern towards our own Problems.

Today I feel shame calling my self a ” Pakistani ” no doubt we are turning into a ” Beyghairat Brigade “. In the end I would like to say ” Pakistan ka Khuda hee Hafiz hai ”

Pakistan Zindabad !


QUETTA: Inspector General (IG) Frontier Corps (FC) Balochistan Major General Obaidullah Khattak on Friday alleged that India was using Afghan territory to carry out terrorist attacks in Balochistan.
Talking to journalists at the FC headquarters in Quetta, Khattak said there was evidence that Afghanistan was being used against Pakistan.
He urged NATO and ISAF forces to control militants using Afghan soil for launching terror attacks in Balochistan.

Meanwhile, Khattak credited FC for maintaining peace in Quetta and said unity was the only way to cope with internal and external threats adding that suggestions were given to the Balochistan government to deweaponise Quetta.

Earlier Chief of Army Staff General Ashfaq Pervaiz Kayani on Thursday had issued a warning to Afghanistan to stop cross-border activities in Pakistan.

Addressing a Pak-Saudi joint military exercise programme in Mangla, Kayani asserted that no such activities would be tolerated and that Pakistan “possesses the capability to respond to any situation”.
(Read: Counter-terrorism: General Kayani warns Afghanistan against cross border activities)

Pakistan’s Former President Pervez Musharraf had also charged that arch-rival India seeks to “create an anti-Pakistan Afghanistan” as part of a bid to dominate South Asia politically and economically.
Musharraf said Afghanistan sends its Intelligence Staff, Diplomats and Soldiers to India where they are “indoctrinated against Pakistan,” something he said India must stop and the United States (US) should be concerned about.

“In Afghanistan, there is some kind of a proxy conflict going on between Pakistan and India,” Musharraf told a leadership forum sponsored by the Atlantic media corporation.

“India is trying to create an anti-Pakistan Afghanistan.”

Khattak says there are evidences that Afghanistan soil is being used against Pakistan by India


Indian Muslims are often accused of terrorist links, but in many cases it is Muslims themselves who are terrorised.

”]According to the Indian government and media, many Muslim groups have recently been involved in terrorism. Of these, three stand out: Student Islamic Movement of India (SIMI), formed in 1976 and banned soon after 9/11 for fomenting “communal disharmony” and “sedition”; Deccan Mujahideen (DM), an outfit which shot to prominence by claiming responsibility for the 2008 Mumbai terror attack; and Indian Mujahideen (IM), a group believed to have been formed after 2001. These groups have been charged with killing hundreds of people. The latest attack came on July 13, when 20 people were killed in a series of bombings in Mumbai.

Shortly after the attack, the police said that IM and SIMI were behind the blasts. A nationwide hunt followed. According to Rakesh Maria, Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) Chief, expert teams fanned out to seven states. Officers from the National Intelligence Agency, formed after the 2008 Mumbai attacks to fight terrorism, raided the houses of two IM suspects in Ranchi, capital of Jharkhand state.

In Indian political discourse, outfits like SIMI, DM and IM appear as a threat to India’s stability and its global rise. While some depict them as domestic groups, others portray them as working in alliance with outfits from Pakistan. It is thus believed that IM was floated by Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), a militant group formed in 1990 in Afghanistan and active in Pakistan-controlled Kashmir. Most accounts of these outfits are, however, inconsistent and even contradictory.

By analysing the Mumbai attack and the alleged involvement of IM and SIMI, I make three arguments. First, since the media and the security agencies have a close and uncritical relationship, we should have a healthy doubt about the accuracy of their information, and refrain from immediately pointing fingers at one Muslim group or another. Despite the fact that barely anyone adequately knows what IM is and how it came about, after the July attack several Muslims were arrested as terrorists.

Second, because Muslims are blamed, arrested, tortured, and killed (by the police) after each terror attack, with little or no evidence, such measures might end up creating the danger the Indian state claims to fight.

Third, I contend that the Indian media’s role in “reporting” terrorism is prejudiced.

What is Indian Mujahideen?

After the blast, the police arrested many people from Mumbai’s “sensitive” (read Muslim) neighbourhoods, a practice the residents of such neighbourhoods have grown accustomed to in the last decade. One suspect, Faiz Usmani, died in police custody. The police claimed that his death was caused by “hypertension”; his family believes that he was tortured. Usmani was the brother of Afzal Usmani, in jail for his alleged involvement in the 2008 Ahmadabad blast. Both brothers are reported to be IM members.

Riaz Bhatkal, described as India’s “most wanted terrorist”, is regarded as IM’s founder. He became close with SIMI in the early 1990s when it began to radicalise. Born in 1976, Bhatkal went to an English-medium school and later studied engineering at a Mumbai college. But beyond that, much of IM’s history remains unclear. It’s not even known whether Bhatkal is alive or dead. After the July 13 blast, the ATS attempted to nab him. This is surprising, because early this year the media reported that Bhatkal was killed in Karachi by Chhota Rajan, Mumbai’s underworld don.

The media provides differing accounts of IM’s formation and, in fact, is sometimes inconsistent even within a single version. For example, Animesh Roul, the director of the Society for the Study of Peace and Conflict in Delhi, claimed that IM was “conceived at a terrorist conclave attended by top leaders of the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and Harkat-ul-Jehadi Islami (HuJI) in Pakistani-administered Kashmir in May 2008”. He did not find it contradictory when in the next paragraph he wrote, “IM came into the open for the first time in November 2007”. In Asian Policy, Christine Fair indicated two dates of its formation: 2001 and an ambiguous date of “much later”. According to The Times of India, IM was formed in 2005. To Namrata Goswami of the Institute for Defence Studies and Analysis in Delhi, “key SIMI members …started supporting the idea of the formation of the IM as early as December 2007”.

IM first hit the headlines after a series of explosions in November 2007. In an email to the media and police, IM claimed responsibility for the blasts. As the email explained, the aim of those attacks was to protest against “the pathetic conditions of Muslims in India that idol worshippers can kill our brothers, sisters, children and outrage dignity of our sisters at any place and at any time and we can’t resist them”. Then, in 2008, minutes before the blasts in Ahmadabad, IM sent an email (entitled “The Rise of Jihad, Revenge of Gujarat”) to the media saying: “We hereby declare an ultimatum to all the state governments of India … to stop harassing the Muslims and keep a check on their killing, expulsion, and encounters.”

The messages are a sign that IM’s aim is to protest against and avenge the killings and humiliation of Muslims at the hands of Hindu nationalists and the state administration. The destruction of the Babri mosque by Hindu nationalists in 1992 is important to IM’s ideological repertoire – hence its description by the media and the terrorism experts as a “home-grown”, “domestic” terror outfit. Since the media regard the Babri mosque as a domestic issue (unlike Kashmir, which is international) and the IM invokes the Babri mosque to rationalise its attacks, the IM is thus considered a domestic outfit.

However, many Indian security experts hold that IM is a tool of Pakistan’s Inter-Service Intelligence (ISI) used to destabilise India. In these accounts, IM is a means to advance ISI’s agenda of destabilising India and at the same time to exonerate Pakistan of any allegations made by India and the West of promoting terrorism. The logic of the security experts is that the word “Indian” in IM points to India’s domestic groups, rather than Pakistani groups like Lashkar-e-Taiba, through which the ISI has been operating in Kashmir. On the other hand, experts like B Raman allege that IM and SIMI’s reach extends beyond South Asia, characterising the groups as a part of a global network of Islamic radicals without furnishing adequate evidence.

India’s Guantanamo Bays

The media invariably base their stories on the sources of the state. An apt example is Praveen Swami, a terrorism expert cited by everyone writing about the IM. Swami is to print media what Arnab Goswami (of Times Now) is to Indian TV: Their views are rabidly nationalist, some might even say Islamophobic. Swami reproduces the police version (e.g. see his writings in CTC Sentinel, May 2010; The Hindu, Edit-Page, March 22, 2010; and Frontline, June 2-15, 2007) without giving the other side of the story, namely: the viewpoints of the alleged terrorists, their family members, or the Muslim community. It is well-known that the Indian police are biased against Muslims and have been complicit in killing them, as was evident in the state-mediated 2002 Gujarat violence, in which 1,000 Muslims were killed.

Given that the Indian media is uninterested in reporting “facts” and multiple views, can an anthropologist like me make sense of the mediatised world of terrorism? Thomas Eriksen holds that a concept like globalisation has “no meaning to an anthropologist unless it can be studied through actual persons, their relationship to each other and to a larger surrounding world”. I thus agree with Peter Van der Veer that “behind the growing visibility [of media] is a growing invisibility”.

What is rarely visible in the Indian media, however, are the brutal, illegal methods used against suspected terrorists: torture cells, illegal detention, unlawful killings in “police encounters”; elimination of evidence against the illegal actions of the law-enforcing agencies; and rampant harassment of Muslims. In July 2009, The Week reported on the existence of at least 15 secret torture chambers meant to extract information from the detainees. The methods to extract information include attaching electrodes to a detainee’s genitals as well as the use of pethidine injections. To quote The Week, these chambers are “our own little Guantanamo Bays or Gitmos”, which a top policeman called “precious assets”.

In May 2008, a Muslim boy aged 14 was abducted by the Gujarat police. He was dragged to the police car at gunpoint and taken to a detention centre where he was tortured. He returned home ten days later when the court ordered his release following his mother’s petition. The police subsequently threatened the boy’s family with dire consequences if they pursued the case in court. The police harassment becomes even more acute in light of the fact that most lawyers often hesitate to take up the cases of “terrorists”. As a disempowered community – as the government-appointed Sachar Committee report (of 2006) minutely demonstrates – Muslims themselves don’t have adequate and qualified lawyers to pursue such cases. Muslims’ marginalisation thus renders their voice invisible in the media too.

It is believed that after SIMI was banned, soon after 9/11, its radical members formed IM. During my fieldwork (2001-2004) on Jamaat-e-Islami and SIMI I did not hear anything about IM. SIMI activists and other Muslims I met felt terrorised themselves. It is worth noting that since 2001 far more people have been arrested as “SIMI terrorists” than the actual number of SIMI members, which in 1996 was 413 (when founded in 1976, SIMI’s members numbered 132). Until today, the Indian government has still not legally proved its rationale for banning SIMI.

The story untold

In the fight against terrorism, evidence and the rule of law are subservient to prejudice. As of this writing, the Indian government has not yet tracked the perpetrators of the July 13 attack. However, only two days after the attack, Subramanian Swamy, a prominent politician and former minister (with a doctorate from Harvard University) wrote an article called “How to Wipe Out Islamic Terror”. Without any evidence, he blamed Muslims for the attack, in the same way that The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Sun suspected Muslim involvement in the Norway shooting nine days later.

What Swamy did is standard practice in Indian media. In September 2006, a blast killed 35 people at a Muslim graveyard in Malegaon (in the state of Karnataka). The media blamed Muslims. Likewise, in 2007, after a blast killed 10 Muslims praying in Hyderabad’s Mecca mosque, Praveen Swami freely wrote about the Muslim terrorists he believed caused it and about what he perceived to be the “Islamist threat to India’s cities”. However, investigations later showed that Hindu nationalists carried out the Malegaon and Mecca mosque terror attacks.

Returning to Subramanian Swamy, Swamy wrote: “We need a collective mindset as Hindus to stand against the Islamic terrorist. The Muslims of India can join us if they genuinely feel for the Hindus. That they do I will not believe unless they acknowledge with pride that though they may be Muslims, their ancestors were Hindus”. Those refusing to acknowledge this, Swamy advocated, “should not have voting rights”. He proposed declaring India “a Hindu Rashtra [state]”.

Stories of Muslim terrorists abound in both the Indian and Western media. Since the July 13, 2011 Mumbai bombings, vitriolic pieces like Subramanian Swamy’s have appeared frequently in the media. These pieces subtly influence the analyses of many liberal intellectuals.

By contrast, stories portraying Muslims as the terrorised remain fairly sparse. One wonders if, and how, such stories will be told.

Irfan Ahmad is a political anthropologist and a lecturer at Monash University, Australia and author of Islamism and Democracy in India: The Transformation of Jamaat-e-Islami (Princeton University Press, 2009) which was short-listed for the 2011 International Convention of Asian Scholars Book Prize for the best study in the field of Social Sciences.


The views expressed in the article are the author’s own and do not necessarily represent Al Jazeera’s editorial policy.

Source : Al Jazeera English

http://english.aljazeera.net/indepth/opinion/2011/09/2011912104910716820.html