Minority MPA asks for equal rights and separate curricula

Published: May 23, 2012

Khokar asked Bilawal Bhutto to take a personal interest in issues of the minorities such as damages to property and dignity, and threats to personal safety. PHOTO: EXPRESS/IRFAN ALI

KARACHI: The Pakistan Peoples Party’s minority MPA Saleem Khursheed Khokar once again raised the issue of threats against him and his family, saying that he was not satisfied with the security provided.

“After my vocal stance on the Rinkle Kumari case and forced conversions, me, my family and MPA Pitanbar Sehwani received threatening text messages but were only provided security once the party’s chairperson, Bilawal Bhutto, intervened,” said Khokar. “I tried to file an FIR at the Clifton police station but that was also registered after I raised the issue in the Sindh Assembly and the law minister, Ayaz Soomro, took notice.”

At the All Pak Minority Alliance’s press conference on Tuesday, he told the media that the phone numbers from which he received threats were given to the police.

Speaking on the education system in the country, he emphasised on the need for “an unprejudiced curriculum” to be formulated. “Children with different religious backgrounds should be able to study according to their own faith and beliefs.”

Khokar requested the government to establish laws which prevent forced conversions. “The case of Shahbaz Bhatti’s assassination should be revisited and those responsible should be punished.”

He brought up the vandalism of the Hindu temple in Peshawar which took place on Sunday and said that the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Inspector General and chief minister should arrest the culprits.

“The government is facing issues related to terrorism and extremism in the country and they are trying their best to combat these menaces,” explained the MPA.

Khokar asked Bilawal Bhutto to take a personal interest in issues of the minorities such as damages to property and dignity, and threats to personal safety. “I will fight for the minorities till the day I die.”

Published in The Express Tribune, May 23rd, 2012.

Reader Comments (12)

  • DevilHunterX
    May 23, 2012 - 10:52AM

    Uh why not hire your own security? Don’t you have money?

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  • yusuf
    May 23, 2012 - 11:10AM

    Enough is enough! Don’t score points Mr.Khokar on Rinkle Kumari’s case, she herself has given statement regarding her conversion as per her own will…….So grapes are sour Mr. MPA!

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  • Sanity
    May 23, 2012 - 11:31AM

    Great initiative, one day our voice will be heard.

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  • Kamal
    May 23, 2012 - 11:33AM

    @DevilHunterX:
    Isn’t Islamic Republic supposed to be the perfect system? Question to be asked is – In a perfect Islamic system – Why is the MPA even getting threats? And if he is, this should be investigated and protection provided.

    And so question becomes if Islamic system is NOT perfect in protecting minorities – What is perfect?

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  • Junaid Naseer Faroqui
    May 23, 2012 - 12:09PM

    It’s state’s responsibility to ensure security of all the people, and when it comes to legislators -since they arrive the floor by the intend and votes of the people- they deserve it comparatively more… It might sound unjustified relatively but still, we know that minorities in Pakistan are in pretty deplorable conditions…. I am also in favor of allowing them to have their designed curriculum for their children. Every Pakistani has equal rights !

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  • true_blue_pakistani
    May 23, 2012 - 12:21PM

    Separate province carved out from Sindh is not bad idea either.
    Minority protection is must as per Islam

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  • badsha
    May 23, 2012 - 12:55PM

    @ Devil
    Do you expect all Pakistanis have their security arrangements? What is the Government for?

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  • Anthony Permal
    May 23, 2012 - 2:21PM

    Sounds very familiar:

    Speaks up for minorities
    Gets threats to his life
    Asks for security
    Government doesn’t give it
    Gets killed a month later.

    Who? Shahbaz Bhatti.

    I am praying for this minister now that he may get the security he needs. Else we all know the chain of events that will happen in our dear minority-loving Pakistan.

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  • Pungi
    May 23, 2012 - 3:50PM

    @truebluepakistani… I can imagine how patriotic Pakistani u r after reading your comment in the current scenario..!

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  • yusuf
    May 23, 2012 - 8:43PM

    @Kamal
    Do you actually know what Islamic system is? Calling Pakistan an Islamic state is far from reality!

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  • Hasan
    May 24, 2012 - 12:24AM

    It’s a relief to see that I’m not alone in hoping that the perpetrators of the temple vandalism are brought to justice. If they are found, I would love to see them stripped of all their possessions, even their clothes, and sent naked to Saudi Arabia – let’s see how their fellow Wahhabi brethren care for them. Probably as much as they care for most Pakistanis.

    Quaid-e-Azam had a dream in which Pakistan would show Islamic compassion to all minorities; after all, this was the ground upon which our founding fathers campaigned for a separate homeland in the first place. How long will it be before we reach the same level as Hindustan, sending out death squads into Christian/Hindu neighbourhoods to torture and molest every woman and child in sight?

    Hasan

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  • Aftab Kenneth Wilson
    May 24, 2012 - 12:55AM

    In fact it is election time and this person is not a real representative of minorities. I would request high ups in PPP to choose someone who really represents Christian Community in Sindh including other minorities. There are many highly educated Christians in PPP who can work better than SK. In coming elections consider some female candidate in consultation with other Christian denominations.

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