TO see Minar-i-Pakistan covered up at a recent political gathering was a thought-provoking spectacle. Let us try to find out what message the organisers of the political rally wanted to convey to the viewers.
Surely, the consideration was not to let our esteemed monument spend an evening in peace with no politics around. They say that actions of an actor should be interpreted with relation to his ‘frame of reference’.
Since the rally was simmering with politico-religious zeal, we can deduce that the purpose behind the ‘cover-up’ of the Minar was to make a not very subtle suggestion as to the value of purdah for fellow Muslim brothers and sisters.
However, as one adopts this line of thought, some disturbing questions present themselves and beg to be answered. Since a man does not need such elaborate purdah and the Minar was totally covered in veil, one feels an urge to ask the organisers about the method which was adopted to determine the gender of the Minar. The veil betokened an unmistakable femininity.
The other question which comes to mind is how a ‘mehram’ will be found for such a unique entity? Surely, we do not want to condemn our beloved monument to a life of loneliness and spinsterhood. Why did the Minar need to remain ‘ba purdah’? After all, all of us deeply consider it or her our very own. These must have been the considerations which led to such a towering display of commitment to Islamic values.
There is hardly any possibility that the organisers of the rally kept the Minar away from the sight of the participants because of aesthetic consideration because this much must be admitted that the Minar-i-Pakistan most certainly does not suffer from obnoxious architecture. Even if veiled, it looked like a lady heavy around the waist.
M. UMAR TAHIR Okara