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The Christians who mourned for the lynched Muslims

The Christians who mourned for the lynched Muslims

By Mohammad Ali Ilahi This week, a group of students from LUMS lead by the Democratic Students Alliance and as part of the Hum-Aahang initiative (Human Shield for Our Christian Community) went to a Sunday mass to form a human chain outside the Nawlakha Presbyterian Church near the Lahore Railway Station. This was in reaction to the twin suicide blasts that had taken place a week ago in Youhanabad targeting the largest and perhaps one of … Read entire article »

Filed under: Islam for Peace, Lahore, minorities, Pakistan, Photos, Religion, secular Pakistan, secularism, Terrorism

پاکستانی سیاست کے مینار

پاکستانی سیاست کے مینار

تحریر: تنویر آرائیں پاکستان میں سیاست کرنے لئے عقلمندی، رواداری، اخلاقیات، شرم وحیا یا غیرت ضروری نہیں ہے اور صرف ان چیزوں کے سہارے آپ سیاست میں کامیاب نہیں ہو سکتے اور نہ ہی اعلیٰ تعلیم، پالیسی سازی میں مہارت، مسائل سے نمٹنے کے تجربے یا حکمت کی ضرورت ہے. پاکستان میں سیاست میں کامیابی حاصل کرنے کے لئے آپ کو فقط بیچنے کا سلیقہ ہونا چاہیے، غلط سمجھنے کی ضرورت نہیں میں تجارت کی بات … Read entire article »

Filed under: Opinion, Pakistan, Politics, Urdu

The Parallel Universe: Do We Live in World # 1?

Misbah U. Azam, Ph.D. Driving on the express way, we come across different exits which we may or may not take, depending upon the destination requirements, traffic densities, breaks for food, gas or other human needs. Now let us consider a scenario. You are driving on the road and there was an exit. You are debating whether to go out on it and stop by some restaurant to eat or for a cup of coffee or tea. Due to some deliberation you decide to keep driving for some more time before taking a break for coffee. After some time you drive, you see a car which overtook you minutes ago gets into an accident. You stop your car, come out and call the emergency. Then you approach the wrecked car and … Read entire article »

Filed under: India, Pak Tea House, Pakistan, Partition, Society

Tufail Ahmad’s rape of history continues

By Yasser Latif Hamdani I had earlier exposed Indian Express’ oped columnist Tufail Ahmad’s shameless distortions in my blog post http://pakteahouse.net/2014/06/28/what-passes-for-history-these-days-tufail-ahmad-of-indian-express/. He had then with great fanfare declared that he would prove me wrong by producing the Chattan newspaper from the dates I had mentioned. It has been more than 6 months and he has failed. But it has not stopped him from distorting the facts of history on Jinnah however. In his recent article, named “Jinnah of Modern India” http://www.newindianexpress.com/columns/Jinnah-of-Modern-India/2015/02/09/article2658963.ece  where he desperately wants to conflate Asaduddin Owaisi with Jinnah,  he ascribes these fake quotes to Jinnah: “The goal of Pakistan is not only to get freedom and autonomy but the Islamic concept of life” “It is Prophet Muhammad’s spiritual blessing that Pakistan came into being. Now it is Pakistanis’ responsibility to turn it into the model (state) of the Righteous … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

Gandhi, Nehru, Jinnah and Partition

By Yasser Latif Hamdani Lately the news coming out of India is not good. Other than Modi’s unfathomable pronouncements about there being genetic science and plastic surgery in ancient India, there have begun mass “re-conversions” of Muslims to Hindus under the “Purkhon ki wapsi” events. Meanwhile one minister of the Modi government has gone on the offensive and declared non-Hindus to be bastards and another minister has declared Bhagwad Gita to be the “national scripture” of India which is constitutionally a secular state. The space for Non-Hindus in India is shrinking amidst protests by Indian liberals and those who have always argued in favour of India’s model of democracy and secularism that it is against the very ethos of India. Through this post I want to forward a couple of arguments which are as … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

Idiotic autocrats

Idiotic autocrats

by Saad Hafiz A Turkish government spokesman summarised the reaction to the outcome of the 2007 Turkish parliamentary elections in other Muslim countries as: “What the hell did the Turks do right that we did not do? How come they can manage a predominantly Muslim population, negotiate [for membership] with the EU [European Union], and have a workable democracy while we are stuck with these idiotic autocrats?” The spokesman may have lacked tact but he cut … Read entire article »

Filed under: Citizens, Democracy, Islam, Opinion, Pak Tea House

But What About Blasphemy Against Human Decency?

But What About Blasphemy Against Human Decency?

Usmann Rana A five month pregnant woman and her husband beaten up by a mob and burned alive in the very same kiln where they worked. A child with mental challenges (reportedly Down’s Syndrome) jailed for ‘allegedly’ desecrating the Holy Qur’an, the Muslim scripture. A colony set ablaze by self-righteous defenders of the faith which ended up costing the lives of eight Christian men, women and a child and damage to a church. In any society with human decency and compassion such … Read entire article »

Filed under: Blasphemy, Democracy, human rights, Islamism, Justice, Lahore, minorities, Pakistan, Punjab, Religion, Rights, Society, violence

Jinnah and the Blasphemy Law

By Yasser Latif Hamdani “I thoroughly endorse the principle that while this measure should aim at those undesirable persons who indulge in wanton vilification or attack upon the religion of any particular class or upon the founders and prophets of a religion, we must also secure this very important and fundamental principle that those who are engaged in historical works, those who are engaged in bona fide and honest criticism of a religion, shall be protected.“  Jinnah on the passage of 295-A of the Indian Penal Code (also Pakistan Penal Code) There is a common tendency – common between Islamists and self-hating Pakistanis alike – to tarnish Jinnah’s memory by saying that because Jinnah was lawyer in appeal (for a fee and purely in a professional capacity) for Ilam Din who was … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

I Love Karachi

I Love Karachi

We are posting Ali Jafri’s pictures – hope the readers would like them. … Read entire article »

Filed under: Architecture, Arts and Crafts, Economy, Heritage, Images, Karachi, Liberal Democratic Pakistan, liberal Pakistan, Pak Tea House, People's Pakistan, Photos, Tourism

Textbook Nationalism

Textbook Nationalism

By Saad Hafiz Prior to and since independence, both India and Pakistan have challenged and manipulated their joint histories for both political and social reasons. Evidently different nationalist ideologies also shape the message in textbooks that India and Pakistan seek to convey to their future citizens. Stark contrasts emerge in the portrayal of political leaders, as well as the causes, consequences and even dates of events. Historical events are politicised to substantiate present events with textbooks used … Read entire article »

Filed under: Citizens, Education, History, India, Jinnah, Pakistan, Pakistan-India Peace Process, Partition

Jinnah and the Shahidganj dispute: “Give me more Gokhales”

Jinnah and the Shahidganj dispute: “Give me more Gokhales”

Independence Day special By Yasser Latif Hamdani Jinnah’s role as the main leader of the Pakistan Movement 1940 onwards has overshadowed his other numerous contributions to India in the independence struggle and as a mediator between communities.  Jinnah, who even the mid 1930s, was denounced as “more Congress than Congress” on numerous occasions intervened in inter-communal disputes and resolved them, which tragically have been forgotten because of the partisan approach to the India’s partition.  Indians have since … Read entire article »

Filed under: History, Jinnah

Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah addresses to the nation on partition on 15 Aug 1947

Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah addresses to the nation on partition on 15 Aug 1947

Malik Omaid Muhammad Ali Jinnah’s vision for the Pakistani state was never controversial. It was nothing new to the people Jinnah was addressing to. But during the course of time when Pakistan’s state adopted the ideology or it was forced to do so, the secular ideas of Jinnah were also made to hide. People now mostly know the idea of Pakistan as an Islamic state. But the 11th August speech was a stone in the way … Read entire article »

Filed under: Anniversery, Citizens, Constitution, Democracy, Egalitarian Pakistan, History, human rights, Islam, Jinnah, Karachi, Liberal Democratic Pakistan, liberal Pakistan, minorities, movements, Pak Tea House, Pakistan, Pakistan-India Peace Process, Partition, peace, People's Pakistan

What passes for history these days- Tufail Ahmad of Indian Express.

  By Yasser Latif Hamdani Tufail Ahmad – a columnist for the Indian Express- has rehashed  two of the most dishonest men in Pakistan’s history –  Agha Shorish Kashmiri and Dr. A Q Khan to prove that Maulana Azad had a crystal ball with which he could see in the future.  When challenged Tufail Ahmad arrogantly referred to me as a kid born in 1980.  Apparently that passes for a counter-argument these days. He says I don’t have source. My source is the fact that this document does not exist anywhere except Agha Shorish Kashmiri’s 1972 book on Azad.  My source is the fact that Azad does not mention these specific predictions (the ones mentioned) in his “India Wins Freedom”. Anyway here are the excerpts from an blog post I wrote 5 years … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

Servants, not masters

by Saad Hafiz In the aftermath to the country’s independence, Mr Jinnah clearly articulated the role of the military: “Do not forget that the armed forces are the servants of the people. You do not make national policy; it is we, the civilians, who decide these issues and it is your duty to carry out these tasks with which you are entrusted.” Other than large-size pictures of the founding father that adorn military institutions, Mr Jinnah’s unambiguous view on civil-military relations was soon buried like the rest of his legacy, to the country’s detriment. With Mr Jinnah’s passing, the military swiftly suborned the political apparatus, becoming the driving force behind the country’s politics, ideology and destiny. It saw fit to manipulate civilian politicians, manage civilian institutions, and invest in a military economy … Read entire article »

Filed under: Democracy, Egalitarian Pakistan, human rights, Jinnah, Liberal Democratic Pakistan, Politics, public policy, Society

Who moved my “liberal” cheese ?

By Yasser Latif Hamdani The beauty of freedom of speech is that  every opinion, even the most idiotic and nonsensical opinion, is allowed to be aired. It is therefore left to the marketplace of ideas to determine what is or isn’t a viable idea.  My blog here should be read in this spirit, as should the shrill responses it will elicit. I have spent the better part of the last 17 months fighting the landmark Youtube case in the Lahore High Court. In the process I have encountered threats from religious right, abuses attacks and physical threats. Yesterday I won a small victory when the High Court acknowledged that the YouTube Ban was unsustainable and that the government was hiding behind a Supreme Court order. Why did I fight this so vehemently? I was not … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan