Unity — a vision foresighted

Faith has trumped unity for good in Pakistan and unity, the pivotal element for nation-building, has become a dream.

Imaan Sheikh February 20, 2013
Most of us remember and casually reiterate Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah’s formula for a better nation: unity, faith and discipline.

The three words have been overused (often in the wrong order), and they are slowly losing their meaning.

Nevertheless, the patriotic romanticism associated with them only grows stronger.

If we evaluate how far we’ve gone in actually implementing the father of the nation’s formula, we cannot help but notice how the three elements of high importance are not being taken as equals.

Perhaps, expecting Pakistan to employ anything that has to do with discipline is a vision too foresighted.

Faith has boldly overshadowed discipline, but unity has slowly succumbed to its power too.

Some of us speculate that the ‘faith’ factor is an encapsulation of all things holy; others interpret it rather differently, claiming that the Quaid was talking about confidence and believing in one’s self. But it is clear that the dominant view is that faith is religion.

In our obsession with this version of faith, we have thrashed the concept of unity entirely.

At first, Ahmadis became the victim; it began in Zulfikar Ali Bhutto's time and never stopped. Recently, a sizable portion of the Hindu community in Pakistan requested India for refuge. At least 400 Shias were killed in Pakistan last year, according to Human Rights Watch.The Hazara Organisation for Peace and Equality reports that since 1999, 1,300 Hazaras have been killed and over 3,000 have been maimed.

What has been done to bring things under control?

How could a truck filled with explosives enter Quetta to be used for the twin blasts?

How could Dr Haider Ali, an ophthalmologist in Lahore, be shot six times in the face and killed along with his son, all in the light of day?

Are only extremist outfits to be blamed entirely?

The recent deaths of 87 Hazaras indicate otherwise.

Maybe faith has trumped unity for good in Pakistan. Maybe unity, the pivotal element for nation-building, is also going to become a dream in the distance — a vision foresighted.

Read more by Imaan here or follow her on Twitter @SheikhImaan
Imaan Sheikh An graduate with a degree in Mass Communication from the University of Karachi, she enjoys reading, writing and listening to classical psychedelic rock. She blogs at www.imaansheikh.wordpress.com and tweets as @SheikhImaan (https://twitter.com/SheikhImaan)
The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necassarily reflect the views and policies of the Express Tribune.


DilliNiwasi | 11 years ago | Reply Imaan, that was a good take on 'faith', the misinterpretation of which has destroyed any chance of 'unity'. But can somebody analyze why were Pakistani people so gullible as to be mislead by a few hundred politicians and feudals? or is it that most people who migrated to Pakistan had pre-existing disposition towards such tendencies in their subconscious? They don't seem to be able to tolerate other faiths than their own? And they also keep quiet when atrocities are inflicted upon other faiths?
Burjor | 11 years ago | Reply Few countries in the world, have obnoxious laws, obnoxious systems. Pakistan is not a nation, it has been divided, sub-subdivided on purpose by selfish, shortsighted politicians, selfish shortsighted mullahs etc, by people in power, people who wish to come to power, people who wish to gain at the expense of others. Pakistan is a most unfortunate country, cannot call it a nation. There is little faith, no unity ( people are plotting, scheming) no discipline, (total anarchy). Many people think, if not most, Pakistan has proved to be a mistake. After 65 years, people can judge quite accurately based on history, based on facts. Accurate, truthful, factual, history is not researched, not documented not taught, Pakistani's are too scared of their own shameful history. Can any nation be proud of what Pakistani's have done to their fellow citizens, but surprisingly, many are. They wish to promote their version of values on others, by force. Not one group, many groups are into this, in a lawless country as Pakistan, this is perhaps, one way of ensuring what they think is what counts.
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