Morality enforcers

Published: October 6, 2013
Email
The event was in full flow when some 30 students from Karachi University burst into the premises. PHOTO: FILE

The event was in full flow when some 30 students from Karachi University burst into the premises. PHOTO: FILE

Are we facing an even more massive threat to our peace and our way of life than that posed by the Taliban, with their bombs, grenades and guns? In many ways, the extremist mindset entering our society poses a growing danger, one that has gradually seeped into each and every aspect of our lives. There are many manifestations of this, evident in all walks of life. The latest came at the Institute of Business Administration (IBA) in Karachi, where students had organised a trade fair, complete with music and food stalls, to launch their marketing club. The event was in full flow when some 30 students from Karachi University burst into the premises, knocked over the stereo systems and accused the IBA students of wasting money on ‘song and dance’ as quake victims suffered and people starved. Two of the most aggressive intruders were handed over to Rangers.

The Islami Jamiat-e-Talaba, linked to the Jamaat-e-Islami and responsible for similar acts of ‘moral policing’ on campuses around the country, was suspected of carrying out the action but its spokesman denied any involvement. Regardless of responsibility, however, the episode reflects the kind of thinking that now exists everywhere. Cases of couples being harassed at parks, beaches or cafes have come in — and we have in Punjab seen objections to school syllabi aimed at promoting tolerance. In many ways, this narrowness of vision, this orthodoxy, drives forward militancy. We must attempt to combat it, as fiercely as we must tackle the Taliban themselves. There is just no way around this. As a society, we are being stifled by the attempts to impose a certain set of ideas on us. This must be combated — it must be challenged — and all of us have a duty to play a part in this task before it is too late and the force of this extremism washes over all of us, destroying what is left of a way of life we must somehow try to hold onto, one way or the other.

Published in The Express Tribune, October 7th, 2013.

Like Opinion & Editorial on Facebook, follow @ETOpEd on Twitter to receive all updates on all our daily pieces.

Facebook Conversations

Reader Comments (10)

  • Kataria
    Oct 6, 2013 - 11:01PM

    The only attempts at imposing certain ideas upon the Muslim population of Pakistan comes from the so-called liberals and secularists. Lets kill all observant Muslims but “dialogue” with “nationalist” terrorists like the BLA. The IJT is only a reaction to the sermonising from the self-styled intellectuals. The only way to ends this tit-for-tat is to defeat both of these (reactionary) extremist forces so the sane can live in peace.

    Recommend

  • Mir Agha
    Oct 6, 2013 - 11:07PM

    “accused the IBA students of wasting money on ‘song and dance’ as quake victims suffered and people starved”

    They have a very good point. If this is “our way of life” then kudos to the vigilantes. Where is the conciousness of these marketing-walas and that of the English media rags like ET? Pretty sure editorial space can be better wasted on actual issues like poverty and disaster relief instead of a non-issue and what it means to “our way of life”.

    Recommend

  • unbelievable
    Oct 7, 2013 - 12:43AM

    @Mir Agha:

    They have a very good point. If this
    is “our way of life” then kudos to the
    vigilantes.

    Ridiculous argument – using your rationale I would question why your “wasting” your time expressing your views on the computer while you should be out helping the earthquake victims. Further – if the righteous vigilantes actually cared for the earthquake victims why aren’t they in Balochistan providing much needed help?

    Recommend

  • Pacifist
    Oct 7, 2013 - 12:52AM

    @Katana and Mir
    were you dropped on your heads or are you simply retards?

    Recommend

  • Insafian
    Oct 7, 2013 - 1:16AM

    Aghast at the open display of liberal fascist agenda at work in media. If fahashi cannot be objected to, if Islamic values cannot be upheld in Pakistan then why did our elders make untold sacrifice to create a separate nation.

    We need to wake up before its too late.

    Recommend

  • Parvez Amin
    Oct 7, 2013 - 6:07AM

    To make Pakistan a shandar and prosperous nation, we must have unity in our society. To construct unity we must allow each their way of thinking. Editorials like your can show the way how this may be done. Your editorial has shown what you want, and I agree with that, but you have not shown how. Here is my suggestion for how this may be done. We must relegate all that causes controversy to the privacy of our homes. Publicly we must exhibit only two things. The goods and services we produce and our price for that. This will satisfy our interdependence on each other and allow us to trade without a care for the beliefs of the person we are trading with. This should generate the unity you and all others seek.

    Recommend

  • Khan
    Oct 7, 2013 - 7:47AM

    At least the @Insafian has come out of the extremist closet and wears his religion (and subsequent views) on his sleeve..

    Recommend

  • bangash
    Oct 7, 2013 - 8:16AM

    @Insafian
    why are you Islamic values limited to song and dance ?

    Recommend

  • Feroz
    Oct 7, 2013 - 9:47AM

    Moral policing has not resulted in a better or more peaceful Pakistan and never will. Tolerance and respect for other human beings and acceptance of diverse opinions and views, will make a better country.

    Recommend

  • Ali
    Oct 7, 2013 - 11:06AM

    We should learn this popular phrase: MIND YOUR OWN BUSINESS!

    Recommend

More in Editorial