PM stresses need for improving moral standards

Premier announces Rehmatul-lil-Aalameen Authority to portray ‘true image of Islam’ to world


Our Correspondent October 10, 2021
Prime Minister Imran Khan addressing Ashra-e-Rehmatul-Lil-Aalamin (PBUH) conference in Islamabad on October 10, 2021. PHOTO: PID

ISLAMABAD:

Prime Minister Imran Khan on Sunday stressed the need for improving the moral standards of the nation if it had to prosper, while announcing the formation of the Rehmatul-lil-Aalameen Authority aimed at portraying the true image of Islam to the world and disseminating lessons from the life of the Holy Prophet (PBUH) to the people.

“Many scholars will be a part of it [authority]. One of the tasks of the authority would be to tell the world what Islam really is," he said while addressing the Ashra-e-Rehmatul-lil-Aalameen (PBUH) conference in Islamabad held to launch the 10-day celebration period till the 13th of Rabiul Awwal.

The premier said the scholars would be responsible for researching on how to spread the Holy Prophet’s (PBUH) teachings among children and adults and make it relevant to their lives.

He added that the authority also would monitor the curriculums of the schools. "They [scholars] will tell us whether it [curriculum] needs to be changed. Other religions will also be taught [at educational institutes]," he added.

PM Imran said the authority would conduct research in universities that had never been done in the country before, adding that it would also assess benefits and downsides of the “western culture” and its effects on Pakistani society.

"When you bring the western culture [to the country], it needs to be assessed what are the benefits and what are the disadvantages because they have better morals [than ours] but it is also affecting our family system. We have not done any research on it," he explained.

He said that one of the scholars would deal with issues related to the media and social media.

“Cartoons we are showing to our children depict an alien culture. We cannot stop them but we can provide an alternative.”

PM Imran said that no nation could progress if it lowered its moral standards. "If the society does not object to corruption then how can the system improve? The entire society must fight corruption. A government has limitations but if a society rises, then corruption cannot exist," he said.

He noted that moral standards in the West were higher than ours. "Their judicial system is better... there is humanity. I saw that many values of Islam were present there. If morals are lowered, no nation can rise."

The top leadership in the Western countries, he said, were expected to maintain even higher moral standards than the general public, adding that if they are caught lying, then they were forced to resign.

"When Hitler attacked Britain, people asked Churchill if they will be saved [from destruction], he said is our judicial system working? Someone replied yes. He [Churchill] said yes then we will be saved."

The premier observed that the UN’s International Financial Accountability, Transparency and Integrity (FACTI) Panel had reached the conclusion that the poor nations’ leadership took away money from their country.

"If someone loots your country, he flees to London but still people shower rose petals on him... how can such a society move forward?" he added, apparently in a reference to former premier Nawaz Sharif.

He said China had lifted many people from poverty by curbing the menace of corruption.

"In China, tens of thousands were put in prisons over corruption and look how it [China] is leading the world today.”

PM Imran said that all elections after the 1970s polls had been marred by rigging allegations and the government in power never wanted to change the system because it was easier for it to manipulate it.

However, he added, the PTI was the first ruling party that was seeking electoral reforms. "All those who are saying that [2018] elections were rigged are against the electronic voting machines (EVMs)."

He said Pakistan was the first country to introduce neutral umpires in cricket against the most powerful teams in the world and added that he wanted to bring the same neutrality in the elections as well.

The premier said that as a society we needed to nurture the youth so that they fight against corruption.

"I came here today because I wanted to address the youth since they are the majority in Pakistan.”

He observed that when he went to the Aitchison College in Lahore, the role models depicted in the system there were very different from our real ones.

"They were pop stars, movie stars, sportsmen... and their lives were very different."

He recalled that when he went to England for the first time as an 18 year-old boy, he saw with his own eyes the role models of that society following a path of self-destruction.

"There was a footballer who later became my friend... he got into drugs... he went into rehabilitation but could not recover... he died at 50," he said, adding that in later stages of his cricketing career he too went down this path.

The prime minister said that our real role models are not taught in schools. "Have we ever followed the Holy Prophet’s (PBUH) life? We have the Holy Quran in our houses but we never bother reading it... we are ready to give our life over the Holy Prophet's (PBUH) name but we never follow His teachings... The premier said the Holy Prophet (PBUH) was a blessing for the entire humanity and not just Muslims.

“Can you imagine Hazrat Ali (RA) as caliph of the whole Muslim world losing his case against a Jew? Can you imagine this kind of justice even in modern democracies? This concept was given by Islam."

He maintained that the world was talking about climate change but this concept was given by Islam 1,400 years ago.

He added that despite the Byzantine Empire being a superpower of its time, people used to come to Muslims as they had a better judicial system by following the guidelines of the Prophet (PBUH).

"The weak needs justice, the rich never want justice to prevail as it doesn’t suit them... they only want an NRO.

PM Imran said that all successful nations today had a great judicial system and rule of law. "Riyasat-e-Madina was the first welfare state [in the world], where special emphasis was given to education and not only for men but for women also... unfortunately many conservatives still object to it today," he added.

He said the message of our religion should be taught to the children in school and our real role models and their efforts should be highlighted.

The premier said that millions follow the teachings of Nizamuddin Auliya, Data Ganjbaksh and Baba Farid Gunj Shakar among other Sufi saints because the message they gave was of humanity and unity.

“During Urs, hundreds and thousands throng to their shrines to pay respect but many of them do not know the teaching of the saints.”

The prime minister said Muslims were debating about children’s rights in the 9th century but today we were not doing any research on it.

"I don't want youth to fall into the same trap I fell into when I visited Britain. We are being programmed that we are backwards and the West is way ahead of us."

He said that Pakistan was a big ideology and a big dream. "If we want to lift Pakistan then it is necessary that we follow the Sunnah.”

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