Why the silence for persecuted Hindus?

With the kidnappings, forceful conversions, and discrimination Hindus have to suffer, Jinnah’s soul must be cringing.

Amna Lone April 12, 2012
The debate over whether Mohammad Ali Jinnah wanted the country he founded to be a secular or an Islamic one has been going on ever since Pakistan’s inception. This debate is a highly contentious one and shows no signs of abating or even mellowing down despite the passage of time.

Here, I will not ponder on the question regarding the vision that Jinnah really had for Pakistan. However, what no one can deny is that Jinnah was an individual who stood firmly for the generous and fair treatment of everyone, especially the minority communities.

Over the past six decades, Pakistanis have repudiated each of Jinnah’s core beliefs. Lately, however, they have touched new lows when one takes into account the treatment that has been meted out to the Hindu community in Sindh. The Sindhi Hindu community is one of the country’s oldest communities that has lived in this land since the days of Raja Dahir and preceding that. Partition forced many of them to flee their ancestral homeland. However, their love for Sindh was so great that some of them continued to live and soldier on here despite the discrimination and the second class citizen status bestowed on them. But now all this might change. The community is facing its worst crisis as the life, honour and property of its members are under vicious attack, with the state watching on silently.

The sinister trend of kidnapping the females of this community, betrothing them forcibly to their Muslim captors and then making a show of their supposed conversion to Islam, is deplorable to say the least. An exodus of Hindus, particularly the educated ones, has started and very soon Pakistan may lose some of its most hard-working, law-abiding and oldest citizens. As a result, the country will be poorer off as it will lose whatever is left of its pluralistic landscape.

The shameful fact is that civil society and the clergy — who ceaselessly harp about Islam being a religion of peace — have not raised the slightest objection on this attack on the honour of a community we are duty-bound to protect. With the present depressing state of affairs, Jinnah’s soul must be cringing sorely in his grave.

Read more by Amna Lone here.
Amna Lone A sub-editor for The Express Tribune’s editorial pages.
The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necassarily reflect the views and policies of the Express Tribune.


gt | 12 years ago | Reply @Parvez: You have written something important. Something those who are blinded by religious fervor in Pakistan and elsewhere fail to note is that the Universe is governed by laws of cause of CAUSE & EFFECT. In English, a line of verse describes this: The mills of God grind slowly, but they grind exceedingly fine. Globally, Islam is not only seen as degenerate, morally, spiritually, intellectually, by all other groups, but even within Islam there is some recognition of things going horribly wrong in the Ummah. Instead of unsparing introspection, by and large, Muslims prefer to don the mantle of victimization and blame others. If the diagnosis is wrong, the cure cannot be possible. But anyway, what Muslims mete out to their minorities, the world IS meting out to Muslims. The Universe or God's will, call it whatever you want, is dictating the steady destruction everywhere of Muslim lives and lands and more will follow. But Muslims nowhere are prepared to accept that as you do unto others, so shall it be done unto you. Since the Ummah believes in a collective identity, penalties also will be applied collectively. What the Turkish Caliphate did resulted in Palestine and all the problems of the Middle East: please read the accounts of travellers like Man(o)ucchi, who arrived in the Court of Shan Jahan from Venice and travelled through the Turkish Empire from Venice as an unbiased teenager, to understand a little bit of how minorities were treated! The text is on the Web, free. Try to read an unbiased history of Kashmir, written by Muslims such as A.D. Rafiqui, SUFISM IN KASHMIR, to understand a little bit of the present issues which have long antecedents. Unless the nature of cause and effect is accepted, the endless cycle of micro and macro-violence cannot ever be stilled.
Vikram | 12 years ago | Reply @Sinclair: "I also support what few commentators have said above, its better if the hindus just convert and be done with it. They want to live in Sindh, otherwise they would have migrated long back. So at least live with peace then." Why are you trying to hide your identity as a Muslim? Are you ashmed of being a Muslim? Would you be happy if Muslims in non-Muslim countries were told to do the same, convert so as to live with peace. In India Muslim can become Hindus, In USA they can become Cjhristians. By changing your name you can't change your Islamic thinking.
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