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Understanding Quaid-e-Azam’s Speeches in Light of Misaq-e-Madina

By Riaz Haq An ongoing debate about the vision of Pakistan’s founder flares up every year around Christmas time which coincides with Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah’s birthday. It is centered on one key question: Did the Quaid want an Islamic state or a secular one? Islamic or Secular Pakistan?   Here are a couple of excerpts from Quaid-e-Azam’s speeches given at different times which are often cited in this “Islamic vs Secular Pakistan” debate: “You are free; you are free to go to your temples, you are free to go to your mosques or to any other place of worship in this State of Pakistan. You may belong to any religion or caste or creed that has nothing to do with the business of the State” “Who am I to give you a constitution? The prophet of Islam … Read entire article »

Filed under: Bangladesh, Pakistan, Partition

Lying Orya Maqbool Jan caught with his pants down

By Yasser Latif Hamdani Mr. Jinnah has been the subject of onslaught by both the right and the left-  both want to paint a beard on Jinnah. Both have repeatedly failed.  But the difference between the left and the right is that the left at least does not deny facts. For example a leftist will not claim that Jinnah’s 11 August speech never existed or that it did not speak of a secular state. Not true of Orya Maqbool Jan, a right wing crook and liar who is also in the civil service.  In his most recent column, the Orya claims that Jinnah in fact never made the 11 August Speech because he could not find any reference in the newspapers.  Typical. First a civil servant Ch. Muhammad Ali stopped it from … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

Drawing a Line o the Events of 1947

Drawing a Line o the Events of 1947

By Ghazala Akbar The division of the Sub-continent into India and Pakistan and eventually into Bangladesh reverberates 66 years after the event. Partition as we are painfully aware did not begin or end in 1947. Not a single day passes, in the collective memories and in the present day politics of our three countries when we are not reminded or are rueful of the consequences of this cleaving. It is a continual work-in-progress, a chapter that … Read entire article »

Filed under: Identity, Jinnah, Politics

What’s your story, Glory?

What’s your story, Glory?

By Jehan Naseem Without a doubt every year is full of experiences that are filled with; struggle, survival of the fittest, strength and an outcome most people feel that is life-changing.  This year was no less, for me or anyone else that I knew. Making changes is never easy, never and they always happen when you least expect it. However, there were certain changes I made this year with the knowledge that, I was taking a complete … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

Zinda Baad Murda Baad

زندہ باد مردہ باد ڈی اصغر اس مردہ قوم کو ہر ٢٧ دسمبر کو کچھ جوشیلے لوگ اپنی دھواں دارتقا ریر سے جانے کیوں بیدار کرنے کی ناکام کوششیں کرتے ہیں. زندہ ہے زندہ ہے کہ دینے سے کیا جو لوگ اس دنیا میں اب نہیں ہیں کبھی زندہھوئے ہیں. ہمیں تو صرف زندہ باد مردہ باد کےنعرے لگانے آتے ہیں. مَثَلاً اسلام ہمیشہ زندہ باد اور بھارت ہمیشہ مردہ باد ہی ہوا کرتا ہے. جانے کیوں کچھ من چلے گڑھی خدا بخش نامی جگہ پر کس بھٹو کے زندہ ہونے کا نعرہ لگاتے ہیں. وہ جس کو ہم نے پھانسی کے پھندے پر جھلا ڈالا یا وہ جس پر ہم سورماؤں نے ایک عورت ہوتے ہے بھی پشت سے گولیوں کی بوچھاڑ کر دی. جب ہم نے ایک کو گڑھی خدا بخش … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

The Serenarts Programme

The Serenarts Programme

Asma Khan The Serenarts Programme is an initiative of Serena Hotels to promote artisans and give them an opportunity to display and sell their work.  In some cases these are dying crafts and need patronage.  Mohammad Waseem an artisan from D.I Khan, learned the craft from his father, Mohammad Ashraf, who was himself a “national treasure” , whose work was awarded the Pride of Performance by the Government of Pakistan. Waseem  traces his lineage to Ustad Karim Ali , a famous artist in the … Read entire article »

Filed under: Architecture, Arts and Crafts

Sheikh Hasina’s Witch-Hunt in Bangladesh

Sheikh Hasina’s Witch-Hunt in Bangladesh

I am highly grateful to Mr. Riaz Haq to contribute this article. Please, PTH DOES NOT essentially agree with all the things written in this article. However, for the sake of freedom of speech, we are publishing this article. Regards Raza Habib Raja Riaz Haq Bangladesh Prime Minister Shaikh Hasina Wajid, daughter of independence leader Shaikh Mujib ur Rehman, set up what she calls “International Crimes Tribunal” (ICT) in 2010 to try those accused of committing … Read entire article »

Filed under: Bangladesh

The Elevator to Power

Saad Hafiz Dramatic reporting and exposés on western news channels suggest that Islamic radicalism is flourishing in the member states of the European Union and in North America. News items tend to focus on a small segment of Islamic activists who espouse extremist and radical ideologies and who have resorted to violence and terrorism against both Muslims and non-Muslims alike. This does not support the sweeping, superficial theory offered by some who represent the Islamo-phobic school of thought, namely that Islam as a whole — and not only its radical factions — is intrinsically militant, fanatical, evil, violent, anti-western and anti-Semitic. Studies have singled out political Salafism, the fastest-growing global radical Islamic movement, which preaches a strictly conservative form of Islam, as attracting second and third generation immigrants in the West. This … Read entire article »

Filed under: Islam, Islamism, Religion, violence

The Structure of Power in Pakistan

M Asadi A class/power structure analysis of the country reveals that it has changed dramatically since the military backed by the Americans incorporated itself in the power equation formally in 1958, in what was hitherto a feudal dominated, agrarian state, cultivated by the British during their colonization of India. The next big change in the power equation was the military dictator Ayub Khan promoting the underdeveloped local bourgeoisie as a bulwark against the feudal elite whose power he was attempting to usurp, (we cannot talk about a “developed” business class at this time when the country’s production and trade is dominated by primary products and most of the population is rural) leading to SOME industrialization, massive inequality and also land reforms for that very end- i.e. to weaken the feudal elite and … Read entire article »

Filed under: History, Politics

Debunking myths by ‘heart’…

Debunking myths by ‘heart’…

Hamzah Rifaat ‘Delhi By Heart: Impressions of a Pakistani traveler’, by Raza Rumi, an Islamabad based policy analyst and writer, is a fascinating read. The book dwells into the intricacies of cultural assimilation and sheds light on how his experience as an impartial traveler to a city such as Delhi, managed to debunk and challenge the myths and narratives from an ultra conservative right in Pakistan, about its adversary. His compilation is a fusion of historical information … Read entire article »

Filed under: Books

Sorry Bangladesh…..Once Again

Sorry Bangladesh…..Once Again

Raza Habib Raja One of my friends, who is from Bangladesh once told me in detail about the way his nation thought about years from 1947 to 1971 and about what happened during the war. He then told me that the scars of the brutal repression by the Pakistani armed forces have not completely healed. That was the time when Shahbag protests were taking place demanding capital punishments for those who had been convicted of war … Read entire article »

Filed under: Army, Bangladesh, Pakistan

Hate Virus in Our Society

Obaidullah Khan Ours is a diseased society and anyone who has any sanity left in oneself would hardly differ with it. Many a times a single disease causes multiple symptoms in a body. A deep study of our diseased society may reveal that there is a virus of Hate in our society causing many deteriorating symptoms. Our society as a whole is suffering very badly with the effects of Hate whether be it individually, socially, politically and most important of all religiously. Anyone can understand that hate is the opposite feeling of Love which is a positive emotion in a human body and a very essential in building positive and constructive tendencies in the human character.  But in contrast to that we as a nation espouse hate, causing a downfall in … Read entire article »

Filed under: Identity

Bhutto – a reluctant hero?

Bhutto – a reluctant hero?

Mohammed Rafiuddin We have a tendency to whitewash our history. It’s not exclusively our forte, most nations do the same but we’ve developed a particular expertise in it. With a single stroke of a brush our heroes are painted as enemies and foes become friends. Murderers are painted as martyrs and brave hearts become interlopers. A recent article by Nadeem F. Paracha (NFP) has attempted to dig deeper and find out ‘what really happened’ during a dark … Read entire article »

Filed under: History, human rights, Politics

Certainly Not My Sultan!

By K M Khan: The Turkish dramas are popular these days. While I am not a fan of the Turkish dramas but for curiosity’s sake I started watching “Mera Sultan”. The historical drama is mainly about the life of Sultan Suleiman, the lord of the Ottoman Empire during its golden days. The drama is magnificent with beautiful clothes and ornaments. Honestly, one admires as well as envies the life of the princesses who all the time wear glittery clothes and jewels and have servants at hand round the clock. The Sultan, who is admired by every girl in the harem, is a charmer and the ladies will do anything to catch his eye. The drama itself is made splendidly and resolves more around the personal life of the Sultan and the … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

The Airblue Crash

The Airblue Crash

Anam Wahid Pakistan is a nation that excels in moving on. We don’t have a choice. Every week we are bombarded with traumas such as suicide bombing, murders, abductions, kidnapping and extortion on a grand scale. The nation hardly gets a chance to breathe before the next crisis occurs and we move on. The Peshawar High Court recently announced its verdict on the Airblue crash case and it seems that the Court has resigned itself from the … Read entire article »

Filed under: Islamabad, Judiciary