A staggering number of Pakistanis want Islamic teachings to be the foundation of the country’s laws, a report has revealed.
“This opinion is especially prevalent in Pakistan (78%), one of only five declared Islamic Republics in the world, and the Palestinian territories (65%),” a research report issued by the Pew Research Centre revealed on Wednesday.
The research report, which is based on the findings of a recent survey of 10,194 respondents, conducted in 10 countries with significant Muslim populations from April 5 to May 21, 2015, notes striking variations in the extent to which people think the Holy Quran should influence their countries’ laws.
The participants of the survey were asked: “Which of the following three statements comes closer to your view: Laws in your country should strictly follow the teachings of the Holy Quran, laws in your country should follow the values and principles of Islam but not strictly follow the teachings of Holy Quran, laws in your country should not be influenced by the teachings of the Holy Quran.”
In Pakistan, the Palestinian territories, Jordan, Malaysia and Senegal, roughly half or more of the full population said that laws in their countries should strictly follow the teachings of the Holy Quran.
By contrast, in Burkina Faso, Turkey, Lebanon and Indonesia, less than a quarter agree. And in many of these countries where non-Muslims make up a significant portion of the population, there are strong disagreements between major religious groups on this issue.
The report further reveals that 16 per cent of Pakistanis opined that Islamic values and principles should be followed in legislation but they should not be strictly followed. However, only 2 per cent of the respondents suggested that laws must not be influenced by the teachings of the Holy Quran.
The survey is based on country-wide samples, which include non-Muslims.