Non-Muslims ought to be eligible to become President, PM: Kamran Michael

Published: August 10, 2011
Kamran Michael was the first non-Muslim finance minister ever to present the budget.

Kamran Michael was the first non-Muslim finance minister ever to present the budget.

LAHORE: Provincial Minister for Finance, Minorities Affairs and Human Rights, Kamran Michael has said that not only are non-Muslims ineligible to become the President, a recent Constitutional Reforms Committee decisions has also made them ineligible to stand a chance of taking the Prime Minister’s slot as well.

Michael, who himself was the centre of a storm when he was first asked to present the Punjab budget. Being a Christian, he was superseded at the behest of some Punjab assembly members who did not think a Christian ought to be charged with such an important task.  The Chief Minister of Punjab, Shehbaz Sharif finally charged with presenting the budget after media reports highlighted religious discrimination within his earlier decision. Michael became the first non-Muslim finance minister to present the provincial budget.

Michael said that though minorities may follow a different religion to the official one,  but as Pakistanis they were are as patriotic as anyone else. Reacting to celebrating August 11 as Minorities Day, he said that it was grave injustice to fix only one day for hundreds of thousands of members of the society who belong to different religions as it promotes a feeling being left out, that they are not Pakistanis and it is not their country.

The Minister further said that minorities are an integral part of Pakistani society and they have their roots in this land and they also rendered sacrifices for the creation of Pakistan. He said that minorities are not the custodian of only one day but 365 days of the year as they are a part of Pakistani nation.

He said that it is an injustice that despite being patriotic Pakistanis, members of minority groups are still considered unequal citizens. Kamran Michael further said that the speech of Quaid-e-Azam on August 11, 1947 should be made a part of the constitution of Pakistan to remove the sense of insecurity within minority communities and they should be eligible for the office of president and prime minister of Pakistan.

Kamran Michael said that Quaid-e-Azam was that leader of every Pakistani and his principles should be followed so that Pakistan could be made a welfare state.


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Reader Comments (21)

  • Bangash
    Aug 10, 2011 - 9:52PM

    I agree with this. President is a symbol of the federation and represents all Pakistanis. I doubt a person with a long beard is automatically more pious than others and can run the country very well.


  • Historian
    Aug 10, 2011 - 10:12PM

    Pakistan has to take a leaf from the views of Ataturk and Jinnah, who wanted freedom and secularism. Islamic fundamentalism will tear the country apart.


  • goggi
    Aug 10, 2011 - 10:35PM

    Pakistan is not the property of any religion. These are our common ethnic roots and our cultural traditions which make us a unique family in this world and certainly not our affiliation to any particular religion. Many fanatic Muslims of Pakistan till today have the same racist attitude towards other religions just as Tulsidas wrote,”Dhol, gaNwar, shudra, pashu, nari, ye sab tadan ke adhikari”. Meaning that drums, illiterates, lower castes, animals and women should be subjected to beating.” ……………….Why should Muslims treat humans, their own country fellows as “Untouchables” and segregate them from social life and pretend as if they don`t exist at all? Pakistan needs qualified people like Mr. Kamran Michael to lead the country regardless of their religion.


  • let there be peace
    Aug 10, 2011 - 11:25PM

    whoever this person is, I hope he has confirmed there is no beard among his bodyguards


  • Mirza
    Aug 10, 2011 - 11:45PM

    If the minorities want to have a fair chance to become President of Pakistan, then they should join the army in droves. Most of the presidents who have occupied this position for any length of time have come from the army. Otherwise the minorities have fat chance to become president of Islamic Republic of Pakistan. Be that as it may, no sane perosn would not want to see a good Pakistani nationalist minority member as President. When the US can elect a black president, why we cannot elect a non-Muslim Pakistani?


  • faraz
    Aug 11, 2011 - 1:18AM

    I hope he isnt threatened for his justifiable demand


  • Salman Arshad
    Aug 11, 2011 - 3:56AM

    Jinnah never promoted the idea of Pakistan being secular. He was at most personally in favor of a secular system.
    The rest of the Muslim League was an Islamist party, who wholeheartedly approved the Objectives Resolution, and rather sidelined Jinnah after Pakistan’s creation.


  • John
    Aug 11, 2011 - 7:17AM

    Perhaps Kamran Michael should go to the UK or the USA and try to become the king of England or the PM of England or the president of the US.
    The minorities in Pakistan are just trying to exploit the war on terror.
    Moreover, in a democracy, the its the majority that counts.


  • Saqib Ali
    Aug 11, 2011 - 7:27AM

    President , yes perhaps but prime minister, no. I find it hard to believe that a Christian prime Minister will always serve the best interests of the muslims in Pakistan, which are above 97% or so of the population. I do not doubt their love for Pakistan and their nationalism but Pakistan is a islamic state and therefore the PM slot should be occupied by a muslim. And let me also say that it should be a proper practising muslim and not the corrupt and “muslim by name” types as we have today.

    But in the end which party is going to promote a christian to its top leadership ? and then even select that person as prime minister? or president? I think no party will so this question is not that relevant afterall.

    Pakistan was never to be a secular state. I do not agree with the assertion that Jinnah wanted a secular Pakistan but for the sake of the argument lets assume that he did. But our greatest leader is the prophet Muhammed (saw). What would the prophet want? A state based on Islam? Or a state which is secular and sidelines Islam? How will a secular state implement islamic laws? Its a tricky issue.


  • Aug 11, 2011 - 7:40AM

    Every Pakistani citizen should have the right to be Prime Minister or President of the country no matter what their religion.


  • bashir
    Aug 11, 2011 - 9:49AM

    Our culture is so biased that no mullah will tolerate a non muslim general in army. There were many ahmadis high ranking officers but now you find no one. Generals like Akhtar Hussain Malik, Abdul Ali Malik , Iftihhar Janjua Who laid down his life during war on forefront.General Nasir Ahmad was seriosly injured during 1971 war. Not to speak of a number of pilots who laid down their lives in wars. Now, no one remembers them because they were ahmadis. Any person who has long beard and a topi or safa on his head is more ” respectable. God savr our nation


  • Cautious
    Aug 11, 2011 - 1:48PM

    Pakistan is so xenophobic it can’t get rid of barbaric blasphemy laws – no way they would seriously consider getting rid of a law which insures that Muslims remain in control.


  • goggi
    Aug 11, 2011 - 3:48PM

    you have spoken out the truth of your racist and uneducated mindset by using a humiliating term “black president” for a human being. The correct and human designation is “Afro-American President”.


  • John
    Aug 11, 2011 - 4:37PM

    @saqib ali…

    Good…. Keep following this and never give up…. This is what exactly everyone wants…


  • Abdur Rehman
    Aug 11, 2011 - 4:46PM

    Same Pakistanis who live in UK, USA can gladly swallow the fact that they have a non muslim head of state. All Pakistanis regardless of their race, religion, sex should be allowed to become PM or President.Recommend

  • Aug 11, 2011 - 8:36PM

    It will never happen in our Pakistan. Just advising to amend blasphemy law invited the death for one governor and minority minister. Pakistanis in US supported Obama become the President, but when it is with Pakistan, their fundamental instinct will not allow a non-muslim to occupy an high position.


  • Waseem
    Aug 11, 2011 - 10:17PM

    @Saqib Ali:
    You have no islamic law right now.. There is nothing islamic in your law, your government watches people die, your government watches mullah attack churches, mosques of ahmadi’s, temples yet The Holy Prophet pbuh protected all these. Your mullahs are so corrupt that they take money from christians (USA, England, India, ) and use it to kill muslims yet you think you have an islamic state, now compare this with a foreign country say Canada which is christian country, they provide jsutice (an islamic tradition), they give welfare to poor (an islamic tradition), they give religious freedom (an islamic tradition), so what islamic state are you talking about? Pakistan is not islamic state.Recommend

  • Why not
    Aug 12, 2011 - 3:27AM

    It is very doubtful that the Western countries who consider themselves the leaders of democracy will give a chance to a muslim to be their President. May be Pakistan can set an example.


  • bashir
    Aug 12, 2011 - 6:27AM

    We should not talk as ‘minority’ and ‘majority’ in Pakistan. Everyone is a citizen of Pakistan with equal rights irespective of one’s religion. There should be no mention of religion in any lagal document Why to differentiate in the name of religion.


  • bashir
    Aug 12, 2011 - 9:06PM

    Dr Abdus salam belonged to ahmadyya community. The great noble prize winner pakistani. You donot find his name in any book or any newspaper.This country is being run by majas gajas. God save the nation.


  • Domlurian
    Aug 14, 2011 - 3:34AM

    Mark my words, islam will become irrelevant soon and a non muslim, by the grace of Almighty God, will become the leader of pakistan. Christ be blessed. That will be the day when pakistan will be admitted into the community of civilized nations.

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