Minority community leaders claim that they are not being treated equally in Pakistan and the issues that they have been facing since independence have still not been resolved.
"We are observing a black day today because minorities are not being treated according to the law," said Michael Javed, the Minorities Alliance Pakistan chief and a former member of the Sindh Assembly.
Speaking at a press conference along with former lawmaker Bheru Lal Balani, and Pakistan Sikh Council leader Sardar Ramesh Singh on Minority Day, Javed talked about the issues faced by minorities in each of the provinces and how they vary with each community. He alleged that minorities are not part of any decision-making committee, adding that these issues cannot be resolved till minorities are given due representations in all bodies. He said that law makers in the national and provincial assemblies do not represent minorities.
"The government should immediately constitute a commission for minorities," demanded Javed. He also urged authorities to arrest those responsible for the deaths of the Hindu brothers of Umerkot and three Sikh community members killed in Peshawar. "All political parties should include minority members in their central executive committee," he said, presenting a list of their demands. Youngsters of the minority community should be given jobs in all departments and institutions, including security forces and intelligence agencies where they can serve the nation and prove their loyalty to the country, he added. "We demand Quaid-e-Azam's Pakistan where all citizens are treated equally," said Javed. The former MPA also demanded that a five per cent quota should be allocated in all universities and that all employees belonging to minority groups should be given permanent roles by their employers.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 12th, 2014.
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