by Saniya Ahmad
No matter how much I love Pakistan, it is not the place for me to be right now. No matter how much I say I love it, I will always be labelled a traitor in the place I call home. No matter how much I sacrifice for my country, my fellow citizens will always look at me with contempt and hatred. No matter how patriotic I am, I will be punished.. for being me.
I am an Ahmadi. I believe in the Oneness of Allah. I pray 5 times a day. I recite the Holy Quran. I fast during the month of Ramazan. I wish to go and perform Hajj one day. Then why must my religion make me out to be a traitor? Why must my faith decide that I should be murdered? Why must my belief make me so unworthy that even my own country, my homeland, fails to own me anymore?
I was born in and have lived all my life in Pakistan. Despite all the economic and social issues, I have loved Pakistan deeply and have never been able to imagine a life in any other country. Why then has my love for my country been reciprocated with hate? If I have never done anything bad for my country, why has it passed out a death sentence for me?
There are so many questions in my mind. I have been asking them from people who hate “my kind”, religious and non-religious people, and I have never been able to get a proper answer. The main question is this – who gave people in power the right to act like God? I know that the God I know does not give His rights to anyone. There is only One God and there always will be One. And He does not give anyone rights to kill innocent people, to massacre them, to murder them, to desecrate their graves, to makes their lives a living hell.
These people who pretend to take God’s place, they don’t know how Merciful He is, how Compassionate He is, how Gracious He is. Why then do they make Him out to be a God who punishes people for living in peace and for practicing their religion? Why do these people drag my beautiful God’s name when they are killing people like us, people who are not worthy of living in their eyes, minorities like the Shias, Ahmadis, Christians, Hindus, Hazaras and a hundred others that live in this country, fearing death with each passing second? If they did not deserve to live, why did God create them in the first place?
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The flag of Pakistan has two colors – green and white. The green represents the majority, and the white represents the minority. I don’t remember ever reading that the minorities were not to be given equal status, I was never told that minorities were to be looked down upon, or killed, or shot, or raped, or kidnapped, or tortured, or humiliated. I was never told that minorities were not the “official” citizens of Pakistan. I was never told that living as a minority in Pakistan would mean I, or the million other minorities currently residing in Pakistan, would be somehow on a lower status as compared to the “official” majority of Pakistan.
I am a Pakistani. No one can take that away from me. You can shoot me for loving my country. You can torture me. You can kill me. But you will never be able to snatch away my love for Pakistan and my belief in Ahmadiyyat away from me, no matter how hard you try. You say you are “cleaning” Pakistan from all the traitors, but I say this. It is traitors like you, killing innocent people, who need to be thrown out to disinfect Pakistan. It is your intolerance that needs to be punished. It is your fatwa’s that need to stop being published. It is you. It is not us. And as time will tell, it never will be.
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