Wake up, Punjab

Published Mar 08, 2010 02:32pm

Another bomb attack in Lahore. What to expect from the PMLN government in the Punjab? Lip service condemning terrorism, of course. But, as usual, keeping in mind the Punjab government’s past record, the condemnation will be general and vague.

Even as the PPP-led coalition government in Islamabad will not hesitate to take names – they’ll point to the Taliban or the many sectarian organisations working as Al Qaeda’s foot soldiers – it is expected that the Punjab government under the PMLN will not.

Determining which forces are hell-bent on mutilating the country is not rocket science. But brace yourself (yet again) to be bombarded by the PMLN leadership and the usual intransigent suspects on TV channels talking generalised nonsense about terrorism and the ubiquitous ‘foreign hand,’ consequently drowning out the obvious involvement of any of the many extremist organisations running amok in Pakistan’s largest province.

But why the Punjab? Although it has been ravaged and broken by extremist terrorism for over two years now, political parties strong in the Punjab (such as the PMLN), the Punjabi-dominant electronic media, and fringe Punjab-based politicos such as Imran Khan have simply refused to acknowledge reality.

Still operating from the fanciful high pedestal of a superiority complex, a bulk of urban Punjab and its leadership continues to live in a stunning, air-tight state of denial.

Whereas in Karachi one can find a majority of common men and women unafraid to air their distaste for the extremists, and walls can be seen adorned with slogans such as ‘Taliban raj namanzoor’ (Taliban regime not acceptable), ‘Taliban sey hoshiar’ (beware of the Taliban), and, my favourite, a slogan found scribbled in a thick coat of black on a wall in a rundown lower-middle-class area of the city, ‘Mulla Omar dajjal’ (Mulla Omar the devil), one just cannot expect such voices and scenes in the Punjab, at least not in Lahore.

Why not? How can a province and a city (Lahore), devastated over and again and plunged into the depths of chaos and fear perpetrated by monsters such as the Taliban, Al Qaeda, and the province’s many clandestine sectarian organisations, simply refuse to face its most ubiquitous tormenters and demons? Why the fearful silence by its people, and why the spin, the vagueness, and ultimate derailing of the issue by the electronic media?

Punjab is suffering. And it is not only from extremist terrorism. It is as if every time its leadership and people attempt to awkwardly repress the obvious lashings of fear and confusion that cut viciously across the province whenever there is a terrorist attack, they become more vocal in their condemnation of the present government at the centre, incredibly investing more emotional and intellectual energy on abstract issues such as corruption, judiciary, and ‘good governance’ through passionate displays of TV studio and drawing-room nobility, rather than directly tackling their greatest enemy.

Funny thing is, they would readily accuse the president of corruption and the US and India for having nefarious designs on Pakistan without offering an iota of evidence, but would get into a long navel-gazing exercise asking for proof of militant involvement in a terrorist attack.

Again, why? Why in the Punjab? Are the Sindhis and Karachiites more enlightened, liberal, moderate or whatever? Some of my most intelligent friends are from the Punjab, as was my father. And so I keep asking these friends, why isn’t the Punjab fighting back this menace of extremism? Why have most of this province’s brightest minds allowed themselves to be pushed in the background by this new breed of neoconservative ‘intellectuals’ in the shape of TV talk show hosts, ‘journalists,’ ‘analysts,’ et al?

I will continue by relating two small but relevant incidents that may help clarify what I am rambling about.

In a province that has been witnessing nauseating bloodshed perpetrated by those who have a painfully narrow view of Islam and are least hesitant to slaughter innocent men, women and children in their pursuit of both heaven and the shariah, one of the Punjab’s leading politicians and ministers did not find anything wrong in accompanying the leader of a banned sectarian organisation during a recent election campaign.

The minister was PMLN’s Rana Sanaullah, who proudly stood beside a notorious leader of a banned sectarian organisation during a by-election rally in Jhang. This organisation openly sympathises with the Taliban.

Only in the Punjab can such an episode take place. Only in the Punjab can a minister can get away with holding hands with a myopic violent fanatic and, in the process, openly mocking and insulting the feelings of hundreds of Punjabis whose loved ones were brutally slaughtered by the extremists that the fanatic sympathises with. Only in the Punjab can his party then go around and ask for votes from the same people. Yes, only in the Punjab.

One can also mention a recent incident that involves Zaid Hamid to hit home the point I am trying to make.

Mr. Hamid, a hyperbolic TV personality who is an animated cross between a foaming televangelist and an impassionate right-wing drawing room revolutionary, has been on a ‘speaking tour’ of various colleges and universities of the country.

Known for openly holding (and advocating) gun-loving militarist hogwash, Hamid has turned distorting history and dishing out the most twisted conspiracy theories not only into an attractive art form, but a lucrative undertaking as well.

Hailed as a modern Saladin (of the armchair variety, I’m afraid) by his mostly urban, middle-class fans, and flogged as a hate-monger with links to the most rabidly anti-India and reactionary sections of Pakistan’s intelligence agencies by his many detractors, it has been very easy for Hamid to speak at Lahore’s private universities and colleges.

This included a visit to the Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS) that only two years ago was the scene of a lively students’ movement against the dictatorship of General Pervez Musharraf.

If the student body of the prestigious university found Musharraf’s action of dismissing a chief justice unbearable, I wonder what was so bearable about a man who is not only a self-claimed supporter of the ex-dictator, but also a proud war monger whose fans are famous of uttering insightful gems such as “if the Pakistan Army was really guilty of raping Bengali women in former East Pakistan, then they had every right to because Bengalis were traitors!”

Nonetheless, after smoothly completing his ‘Wake up, Pakistan’ speaking tour of Punjab’s campuses, Hamid and his entourage of trendy, designer reactionaries, made their way towards the country’s most ravaged province, the Pakhtunkhwa.

Faced by an insane spate of suicide and bomb attacks by extremists and the military’s war against the Taliban, the youth of the Pakhtunkwa province have shown great resolve to fight back. Student organisations in various state-run universities and colleges of the province have gone on to organise cultural functions that the extremists would term ‘haraam’ and ‘unIslamic.’

Just like the Baloch Students Organisation (BSO) in Balochistan, the Peoples Students Federation (PSF), and the All Pakistan Muttahidda Students Organisation (APMSO) in Sindh, students’ organizations of the Pakhtunkhwa have continued to fight a cultural war against extremism, even when a recent cultural function organised at a university by the BSO in Balochistan’s Khuzdar area was bombed by extremists.

So when Hamid and his army of patriots reached Peshawar University, he was confronted by loud groups of protesting students who wanted him banished from the campus.

The protest, perhaps the first of its kind faced by the likes of Hamid, was organised by the Peoples Students Federation (the student-wing of the Pakistan Peoples Party), the Pakhtun Students Federation (the student-wing of the Awami National Party), and the independent collection of liberal students under the Aman Tehreek umbrella. What’s more, also joining in the protest was the Islami Jamiat Taliba, a student organisation whose mother party, the Jamaat-i-Islami, ironically sympathises with the Taliban.

As the students threw stones at Hamid’s entourage and tried to chase him off the campus, the Aman Tehreek explained exactly why democratic student organisations had joined hands to throw him out.

“We have already suffered a lot due to the suicide bombers and militants and do not want people (in our city and campuses) who promote the extremists,” said an Aman Tehreek activist talking to Dawn.

In light of this example, it seems Punjab’s political leadership is out of sync with the prevailing psyche in Sindh, Balochistan, and the Pakhtunkhwa regarding Pakistan’s war against extremism.

The people and politicians of Punjab need to contemplate difficult questions before they can rid their province of the violence that it has had to face. More so, the confused mindset that is causing violence to be bred and sustained in the Punjab must be eliminated.

nadeem_80x80
Nadeem F. Paracha is a cultural critic and senior columnist for Dawn Newspaper and Dawn.com.

The views expressed by this blogger and in the following reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of the Dawn Media Group.


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Nadeem F. Paracha is a cultural critic and senior columnist for Dawn Newspaper and Dawn.com


The views expressed by this blogger and in the following reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of the Dawn Media Group.

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Comments (258) Closed




Marvi
Mar 08, 2010 12:08pm
Sir, in case you haven't noticed, they are not 'liberal extremists' who are blowing themselves up in mosques and bazaars.
Irfan
Mar 08, 2010 09:43am
May Allah save us from Taliban and Liberal Extremists who wants to make Pakistan hell.
nabeel
Mar 08, 2010 09:51am
Rightly said, Paracha. Punjab it seems is living on a different planet. Also, kudos to the students of Peshawar for standing up against hatred. I am surprised that how can when a government-owned college rise up against hate speakers like Zaid, how can LUMS sit back and allow him to spread his hatred? Shame on LUMS.
usman qadri
Mar 08, 2010 10:03am
People of Punjab and majority of Pakistanis live in denial. This is the height of hypocrisy and lack of moral courage that has brought a day where we as Muslims are not safe in mosques, shops, schools and homes. PML-N is leading and using this public mood which is disgusting.
Saqib
Mar 08, 2010 10:17am
Whats wrong with you? Every article has to have a mention of Imran Khan and Zaid Hamid. Quit obsessing them and write something substantial. What does a blast in Lahore has to do with Zaid Hamid. Are you denying the fact that Blackwater is not involved in Pakistan, are you denying the fact even stated by US authorities. quit making false statements and come close to the reality. It is completely different than your imaginary world.
dr vimal raina
Mar 08, 2010 10:28am
Looking at the brew being cooked, by rabid like Zaid, lacing it with the go ahead nods, a dangerous brew is being fed to the poor gullible masses. The students in Peshawar, fed up, hatred spewing Zaid, did an exemplary thing. Punjab needs to wake up. It is brewing bombs of hatred. It will burst one day. What happened today was a trailer.
shatir
Mar 08, 2010 10:06am
Absolutely correct, NFP.
Qaiser
Mar 08, 2010 12:02pm
Hi I am a big fan of yours and I don't know who Mr Hamid is. Your articles are at least liberal and at times thought provoking.
Marvi
Mar 08, 2010 11:58am
Sir, instead of hiding, let's fight.
Ali
Mar 08, 2010 12:00pm
OK let me start here with one thing! How in the world those slogans written on the walls of Karachi shows that People do not want them there? Guess what, to spill your hatred towards Zaid Hamid [Whom i not a fan] and Imran Khan, you're trying to wake up WRONG people.. We're the same Punjabi people who are fighting in Waziristan to eliminate the terrorists! I say this article is completely illogical and misleading!
Sajjad
Mar 08, 2010 10:30am
I think LUMS is inclining towards creating an Elite Religious Society or Elite Left. People in Sindh surely have the courage to dispel people who supported Zia and who were supported by Zia. It was certainly a difficult Job for Zia to impose his version of Islam in Sindh.
Imran
Mar 08, 2010 10:34am
Excellent piece of Analysis and truth. Well done and very honest but terrible picture of Punjab. We, people in Punjab, living in a fear to get attacked anywhere and then sadly Punjab Govt. even can not stand against these killers. We don't seem to understand that why PLM-N in a state of denial? What are they waiting for? So many innocent people died since 2 years and still they are not getting up. What a shame & blatant betrayal with the people of Punjab !!!
Majid
Mar 08, 2010 10:37am
Being resident of Model Town, Lahore, today we witnessed 2nd blast. I was a minute drive away from the site of the blast, as I daily pass through the mosque of Dr Israr. I urge both Provincial & Central Governments to shift all of their Security Agency Offices from Model Town, if remaining, and from all other residential areas before more people lose their lives.
RJ
Mar 08, 2010 10:39am
Why does Nadeem expect anything better from Punjab leadership? Don't forget that they are a creation of the most myopic and regressive leader this country has ever had and we are still suffering because of his creations, sectarian militancy and violence being the worst. As for Zaid Hamid and his "Mod Squad", Nadeem needn't lose too much sleep over them, they are just a minor irritant and the people will eventually see through their silly agenda. (fingers crossed)
Progressive Pakistani
Mar 08, 2010 10:40am
Right on spot once again, but to me, the majority province of Pakistan has a big say in the political strategic objectives of Pakistan and If they keep sympathy towards extremist then it would definitely be a big failure against war on terror. The rest of the Pakistan is very vocal in rejecting Taliban and various faces of fanaticism. In-spite of nefarious plans of extremists, the poor role of Punjab based political forces, TV anchors and media persons and people against extremist forces is indeed big setback. Unless we all come clear against extremist forces, we could not move ahead towards more progressive Pakistan.
Faisal
Mar 08, 2010 10:40am
Being from Karachi, I would like to share my viewpoint with you....Problems rises when people are in state of denial, non serious and not vibrant to conditions. I see no party or media from Punjab giving call to stay vigilant against expected terrorism and criminal elements among them, no such move has been initiated to educate people. Ruling party in Punjab is busy in exploiting any situation that somehow defames opposition that's what is there prime priority these days. No body has raised Slogan we own our city and neighborhood, here is the problem. We youth of Karachi are very vibrant to any situation that arises...People have come million step ahead to own City and Having vibrant leader the task became very easy and very effective.
Muhammad Faran Hassan
Mar 08, 2010 10:44am
Useless article.
Imran Ahmed
Mar 08, 2010 10:50am
Since this government won the election on 18th February 2008 till now, every time an incident happens in Pakistan they comes out only with one word "condemn", that's it! they feel by saying we condemn all the problems are solved!
Naif
Mar 08, 2010 11:03am
It seems like you are obsessed with Zaid Hamid. The man speaks truth which you will not ever. Wake up NFP from the deception that engulfs your thoughts. awaiting a positive note from your end !!!
Aamir Mughal
Mar 08, 2010 11:04am
Excellent.
Qasim
Mar 08, 2010 11:05am
Nadeem, I generally agree with your argument. But you have this habit of generalizing and exaggerating things, Equating Imran Khan with TTP or Taliban or stating Zaid Hamid preaches terrorism or suicide bombings are both FACTUALLY INCORRECT. I am no fan of either of these two personalities but while arguing for something we believe in, we should not start telling lies, otherwise, you will keep singing to people who are already convinced by you. You would never ever convince anyone from neutral or opposing camps into your fold. This is a sincere brotherly advice.
Narat Baloch
Mar 08, 2010 11:40am
I am 100% with you, its Punjab
omer
Mar 08, 2010 11:05am
Although I am not a big fan of yours Mr. NFK, but still I totally agree with all you have written here. Punjab is bleeding and sadly no one in the province seems to care. Political leadership (PML N) is sitting there waiting for next elections; they don't bother about anything else at all. They are busy in enhancing vote bank, at the cost of encouraging extremist elements. Though the general public of Punjab hates extremist elements as much as an ordinary person of Karachi or Peshawar does, but what can people do? People of Punjab are not in denial. They are very much aware of the danger these extremist elements pose. It is only the ruling PML N which is to be blamed. And than some how media is also to be blamed, as it has NOT criticized the Punjab government for its failure to act against extremist elements.
S.A.Khan
Mar 08, 2010 11:20am
Pakistan governance at all level is week. It is like journalists who draw attention to the wrong in the society, but powerless to do much except draw attention of the society. There are supporters of religious extremism in the society and political leadership desires to become Air-ul-momeneen. They give solace to Taliban. Put some foreigners as advisors to Law & Order Agencies with potential to get results. Perhaps it may produce some calm in the society.
Jawad
Mar 08, 2010 11:28am
Useless!
Fahad
Mar 08, 2010 11:28am
In reference to the incident took place in Islamia College University Peshawar. It is interesting that NFP is supporting "firing in the air and pelting cars with stones" by students and in the same article denounces extremism. It seems firing in the air and pelting is fine as long as it is being done against those who do not hold similar view to that of NFP. I dislike Zaid Hamid to but pelting someone's car because you do not agree with their ideas is quite extreme in my opinion... what do you say NFP?
shatir
Mar 08, 2010 11:29am
It's nice to see even drawing-room Taliban also read NFP articles.
Progressive Pakistani
Mar 08, 2010 11:40am
You are right in your analysis and I think, there is also a dire need to counter media frenzy for Taliban or conspiracy apologists. Aid Hamid and company who gets their impetus mainly from Punjab and It
Marvi
Mar 08, 2010 11:54am
Pelting the car of a man who encourages people to spread and spout hatred and glorify war is justified. I am really proud of my young Pakhtun bothers and sisters of finally taking a stand against war mongers like Hamid. We should see this as a sign of hope. Kudos NFP!
alumni
Mar 08, 2010 11:58am
I am a former LUMS student and I am ashamed that Zaid Hamid was allowed to speak at LUMS. I dont know what is happening there but this is truly disgraceful.
Pak_Crazy
Mar 08, 2010 12:36pm
Not always in agreement with the writer, but I agree totally on this article.
Syed O Ali
Mar 08, 2010 12:37pm
This article is the best I have seen from NFP! Loved the truthful breakdown of the situation. It is about time when Punjab stands up and leads us out of this mess. Karachi and others can't do this alone. Thanks NFP!
Tasneem
Mar 08, 2010 12:19pm
YA ALLAH another blast in Lahore!!
S. A. M.
Mar 08, 2010 12:45pm
It is hard to believe that Punjab and particularly a city as big and as educated as Lahore is quiet on the issue of Taliban. It is upsetting as well as sad to read that people like Zaid Hamid are actually giving lectures to the students. Zaid cannot enlighten anyone he can only pollute the minds of students and many others. The fact that the Administration of LUMS let Zaid Hamid render his spiteful sermons in their institution is again shocking.
Wazim
Mar 08, 2010 12:50pm
I agree with you on most things but do you think there is any need of mentioning one particular province?? Don't you think most suitable headline would be "Wake up Pakistan"??? Every government is guilty, not just PMLN (I do NOT support PML N). By making a headline like "wake up PUNJAB", all you are doing is spreading some more ethnic hatred (as if there is not much hatred already). Stop using these problems for your own agenda, I really hope you didn't write this article to show support for a certain party. There is one party I know is hated by Zaid Hamid and Imran Khan, I hope you are not just being their representative. (I apologize if it's just a sincere effort to wake up an average PAKISTANI).
Changezi
Mar 08, 2010 12:26pm
Being in a state of denial is a NATIONAL TRAGEDY!
Dil Aftab Khan
Mar 08, 2010 12:26pm
I am ready to be a slave in an Islamic state ruled by Taliban but I will fight tooth and nail against those who wants to destroy Pakistan. PAKISTAN ZINDABAD.
Ashok Sai
Mar 08, 2010 12:30pm
I am an Indian, My sincere condolence to the families who lost their loved ones in the sad incident. Brothers, can any one tell me, who are Pakistani Taliban ? are they not Pakistanis ? why they are killing innocent civilians ? what do they want ? Thanks in advance for clearing me. Lets wish for the best future.
Maryam
Mar 08, 2010 12:37pm
I do not agree with you. Punjab needs to wake up not the government of Punjab. Can u suggest a possible way of stopping suicide bombing? The guard was stopping him and he blew himself up, which implies security was there. There is no way Mr. NFP to stop it... Stop blaming the government for once in your lifetime, these are the people you yourself elected. I m not from Punjab but whoever I met from Punjab is not even satisfied but happy with the their government because Punjab elected the best candidates. We also wish that we have leaders like Shahbaz Sharif ruling our province...
Fawad
Mar 08, 2010 12:44pm
Paracha sahib what an insight, there is no denying about the fact that PML-N, Jamaat and Imran are all same people only wearing different cloths. Lets hope a liberal and true democratic movement develop in Punjab.
Yasir Mehmood
Mar 09, 2010 07:29am
Fully agreed, apart from the wall chalkings in Karachi you mentioned is mainly used to prop up hate against the Pukhtoons living in the city by labeling them as Taliban. I am a student of government engineering university in Punjab. Recently, I discovered a latest issue of magazine called 'Afghan jihad' in library which openly praised TTP, gave a record of the number of US soldiers killed in recent months and also came up with ridiculous news items such as 'Taliban have acquired ability to hack drones'. So what can you expect for our future?. Pakistan studies and Islamiat is compulsory even at this level whose textbooks preach hate particularly against India and are written during Zia era, also suggest that whole concept of democracy is non Islamic. We are living in denial. Once i complete my undergrad i am moving out.
Shandaar
Mar 09, 2010 08:30am
Well said Sadiq. Politicians and mainstream media continue to live in a world of delusions and lies. This is pathetic.
Zahra
Mar 08, 2010 05:42pm
Zaid Hamid is definitely out of line in the things he says.
truth_speaks
Mar 08, 2010 05:46pm
Well said NFP as always. How sad it is that we use our resources to build an ideology and then use more resources to clean it up. All through one stroke of pen (one man show) and every time it is wrong (not worth repeating the history). When are we going to say and do the right thing instead of finger pointing? Accept the blame and come out of 'denial' and never say it is 'they' who are doing it therefore it is right or it is wrong or it is not our problem. We are all PAKISTANI and it is my problem no matter what corner of the country 'wrong' thing is happening. Don
Ilyas
Mar 08, 2010 06:11pm
Dear NFP do not expect anything from PMLN. To PMLN there is only one issue in the country; that is the 17th amendment.
LostInSpace
Mar 08, 2010 06:20pm
Very nice Mr NFP.
hansa
Mar 08, 2010 06:21pm
Well how neutral or in opposing camps you need to be before you actually understand what Zaid Hamid or Imran khan are saying on electronic media. Do they actually have to teach us how to make or set off a bomb on TV before we equate them with Taliban.
SA
Mar 08, 2010 06:21pm
Wazim, this is a well analyzed article. I do not see how Nadeem is spreading ethnic hatred. His analysis points out clearly that the politicians and self proclaimed thinkers mostly operating in Punjab are misguiding the populace there. Ethnic hatred would have been if he had said something negative about Punjabis, but he hasn't and is merely asking folks based there to realize that some prominent folks among them are exploiting them for "their own agenda". As for now mentioning all of Pakistan, it is quite clear than parties popular in other provinces are vocal against the extremists. It is only pml-n, with base and supporting Punjab, that maintains a deafening silence and points fingers at so-called foreign hands (that too when they are forced to speak on the issue), hence making it impossible for popular support to be created against militants that are harming all of Pakistan.
Arsalan Kh
Mar 08, 2010 06:22pm
Excellent once again.
hansa
Mar 08, 2010 06:31pm
I want to ask Zaid Hamid, whether his love list towards humanity outweighs his hate list. I wonder what his honest answer be.
Farooq Chaudhry
Mar 08, 2010 06:35pm
PML-N role in reinstating of Judiciary was commendable, but Rana Sanaullah holding rallies with banned Organization's leader which spews hate and violence is truly shameful. They should come out and apologize for it, instead of making one excuse after another. It has lowered PML-N standing in many people's regard including mine.
Moeed
Mar 08, 2010 06:39pm
I think most of your articles are promoting differences between provinces then the other way around. I also noticed in your articles about certain support for parties that are raising slogans against Pakistan and its national heritage. You are just promoting one side of story and in completely denial of the other side. I hope in your next articles you will be more balanced and respectful.
safar
Mar 08, 2010 06:55pm
This is a very racist post that your paper has allowed: "Narat Baloch says: March 8, 2010 at 16:40 I am 100% with you, its Punjab
safar
Mar 08, 2010 06:58pm
Mr narat baloch. Punjabis don't puff themselves with false history. Punjab has resisted invaders from Alexander to Changez Khan's army very successfully.
Sajjad
Mar 08, 2010 07:04pm
I agree 110% with Wazim, please don't start ethnic hatred, the whole country is already burning, regardless of the political engagement we can at least first think what we are publishing, so lets agree to make it "Wake up Paksitan".
TI
Mar 08, 2010 07:06pm
I think your take on this article is flawed. Yes, sure the author could have written "wake up Pakistan", but still, he would be target of your criticism since he would be pinpointing the problem to the core. I think we have to be mature enough to call a duck a duck. If we are ever going to solve any problem, no matter what kind, we have got to start admitting our faults. I don
Ali Shaikh
Mar 08, 2010 07:20pm
These are the same Punjabis that fought tooth and nail for the lawyers' movement; These are the same Punjabis that are fighting with all countrymen on the Western front... NFP, People have lost lives and here you are twisting everything up.
Faisal Kapadia
Mar 08, 2010 07:21pm
Punjab often salutes the rising sun NFP.
Nadeem Saqib
Mar 08, 2010 07:31pm
It is good to let people talk...good people or bad people (this way people take out their frustration). It is called freedom of expression. There is nothing wrong to let Mr. Hamid to spread his message (as long as it is done in a peaceful manner and the message does not incite violence). This way one knows who are you and what do you stand for. Here in US everybody is allowed to speak up their mind as long as it is done in a peaceful manner and the message does not incite violence. There are laws restricting certain speech and if you break the law then you are punished (This is called boundaries of free speech). The bigger problem is not speaking, the bigger problem is listening to it and then following it. Absence of laws create commotion and un-implementation of laws create chaos. This is the reason for the status quo in Pakistan. What you sow is what you reap. The Lower and Upper houses are elected to enact laws for the benefit of the whole society and not one particular group. The government is elected to carry out these laws effectively and without prejudice. This is how the harmonious societies are created. Please look around and see if this is what is going on in Pakistan. If yes then Pakistan is on the right track, if not then Pakistan is doomed.
Syed Rafat Ali Jafri
Mar 08, 2010 07:34pm
I am from Karachi. First of all my condolences to the families who lost their loved ones in this attack. I know words are never going to be good enough . We must understand that all this problem can be stopped and tackled efficiently if our policy change today. PMLN has crossed all the heights of misconduct and yet they will succeed in the election again. One should now realize how hypocrite they are. There should be no room for terrorists in our country. Police torturing innocent people under the supervision of MPA, Minister Rana supporting ban outfit just for the sake of the votes are some bad acts of PML N.
Abdullah Hussain
Mar 08, 2010 07:41pm
Wazim I agree with your point of view. Wake up Punjab call will create distrust in the mind of peoples of other provinces and could lead to similar calls by the peoples of their respective province. I think the heading should henceforth be changed.
Zafar AlSyed Chicago
Mar 09, 2010 10:12am
Nadeem! Thank you for identifying the true problems of Lahore Punjab. It is sad that most of the time we analyze things based on our affiliations and loyalties to our parties. That is why we divide ourselves into groups of for and against. It is our country. We can solve our problems together. We can only do so by identifying our problems with sincerity, impartiality and open minds. When it comes to why the people from other provinces like Karachi and Peshawar are able to open their minds and say no to the promoters of the hate and religious extremism? because the mother of all problems (religious conservative parties) in those provinces, specially in Sindh have been rooted out by the people and their open minded political parties who transferred the power to real people which is the key of success for a balanced society. I commend MQM for this achievement of empowering the middle class. By the way I am not a member of MQM party. Where as in Punjab the never ending culture of Mian and Mazaaray, the corrupt political lords and their religious masters have manged to maintain their strong footings with the help of looted national wealth and their exclusive media agents (Right Wing Echo Chamber) who are busy misleading, exploiting and steering our masses against moderation and democratization efforts. I strongly believe that PMLN, JI and alike parties do not want the terrorism go away because it helps them hit their political opponents effectively when the religious terrorism and sectarianism market is high. None of these parties have ever condemned the terrorism and suicidal bombing openly and loudly but the promotion of mob politics has been their best political shot in my opinion. This process will continue in my opinion till the Zia era is brought back in power in form of PMLN and then every thing will be calmed down, including the law and order situation in our country, the executive branch will not be forced to mind their existence instead of concentrating on their task for which they are elected. I believe until and unless the people of Punjab are not able to differentiate, this problem will never go away. Remaining in state of denial and blaming the outsiders is not the solution.
Asif
Mar 09, 2010 09:03am
Yes , every time anything happens then its India or Israel . Do you guys think we are fools to send ' Made in India " stamped weapons to Pakistan ? India will no way trade its credibility for attacking civilian targets in Pakistan. Its just that Rehman Malik has no clue on whats happening under his nose . For us he always looked like a very confusing guy who some how wants to fix the blame not the problem. India has no interest in Pakistan. You will not have any Indian arrested anywhere in the world for plotting attack on another country.
Saeed Chughtai
Mar 08, 2010 07:44pm
Any demonstration of violence is wrong. I feel sorry to see comments like the one Ms Marvi made. Its the job of Police and legislators to stop individuals who "spout hatred and glorify war". When common people start judging and punishing, then it is chaos. That is what Taliban are doing.
asad
Mar 08, 2010 07:54pm
I am a student of LUMS and I don't think that Zaid himself came, Maria B and Khaqan Sikander represented him.
Pakistani
Mar 08, 2010 07:58pm
I have to say, PML-N has always been like that and this is not the first experience for people of Punjab. Though the irony is, still people vote for them, and bring them back - and so will it happen in the next elections - unfortunately. As far as 'Sir' Zaid Hamid is concerned, I salute the students of Peshawar University to take a stand against these aimless extremists. It is sad to hear that students of Lahore supported this person. I have a strong feeling though, that students of Karachi will support him as well - lack of student politics has left a gap of leadership in universities - and zion hamid is filling that gap, by providing those baseless stories with no head or tail. I pity our teenage and youth, and hope someone rises up again soon, to stop this plague from spreading further in our roots.
Feroz
Mar 08, 2010 08:04pm
Good analysis Nadeem.
Owais
Mar 08, 2010 08:07pm
Hahahahahaha - I don't see any difference between TTP and liberal terrorists - PSF etc pelting stone on anyone cannot be justified. This is the dilemma of our country, both the polarized parties have this "Holier than thou" attitude. Both conspiracy theorists. Two opposite extremes of the spectrum. NFP on one end and Zaid Hamid on the other. Both only audible to those who are already convinced with their school of thought. By the way Imran Khan is no Taliban and I have heard him condemn TTP/Taliban mindset on more than one occasions.
Amir
Mar 08, 2010 08:14pm
Once again another useless article by an extremely biased writer.
M. Asghar
Mar 09, 2010 01:03pm
We are in a strange situation in Pakistan because we are starting to have an active civil society in the country backed intelligently by the judicial institutions of the land, but strangely the political leadership at the center and in the regions goes on with a total feudal mindset unable or unwilling to see the general interests and needs of the land and the people who suffer the daily misery of hardships and violence amongst and around them.
amjd cheema
Mar 08, 2010 08:50pm
Absolutely on the spot. Well written.
Shahzad
Mar 08, 2010 09:12pm
Great work again, Nadeem. It's painful that the ruling party of Punjab has quite ambiguous policy when it comes to terrorism and extremism. Why top echelons of PML-N have not uttered a single world regarding Rana Sana-ullah's visit to SSP HQRs? It's crystal clear that the sympathies of PML-N lie actually with such banned sectarian organizations because it still consider them as its vote base. Zaid Hamid & his entourage, they are making our youth xenophobic and isolated while our media is collaborating with them in this devious plan. I wish that some sane voices like Nadeem would remain as a beacon of hope in otherwise dark night of our social and political environment.
maria
Mar 08, 2010 09:35pm
I don't think there is any shame in admitting that in this case - Punjabis need to wake up the most among all 4 provinces. While there is a greater need for concerted effort and raised voices by every Pakistani, Punjabis in particular seem to be affected by this - by a nauseating apathy in my opinion. And nothing, and I mean absolutely nothing, seems to wake them up from this stupor. And before anyone accuses me of ethnic hatred, let me point out that I am Punjabi! and I am bothered by the largely apathetic masses within Punjab. And terrorism by extremist organizations is just ONE aspect of it all. Punjabis are very happily oblivious and content with whatever injustices and horrors are thrown their way. Nowhere else in this country does the Police dehumanizes the citizens as they do in Punjab, and not from now, since forever. For the first time in history of this province, a few people raised voices because electronic media played and replayed a video of Punjab Police openly flogging. Why Punjab? Why such apathy here. And Nadeem here is not the first one to justly mention this. Habib Jalib noticed the same thing about Punjab when he said "Sindh Balochistan to kab se rote hain, aur Ehl-e-Punjaab abhi tak sotay hain". (sorry about the Urdu verse in an English comment, but you get the idea :))
M S Khan, miami, fl.
Mar 08, 2010 09:55pm
Instead of blaming each other, oh people of Pakistan unite and get rid of Taliban and al-qaeda from your home land. Taliban and al-qaeda funding, explosives and arm suppliers must be identified, tracked and eliminated. I wonder why the government and the media are not paying attention to the Taliban resources. Think about it, where does the money come from? where do the explosives and arms come from; who manufactures these and who supplies these. Go to the root of the problem, dry out their funds, expose and eliminate their suppliers. people need to be extra vigilant to whom and to which charity organization they give their zakat funds.
Ayub
Mar 08, 2010 09:57pm
I believe you have been a champion of democracy for a very long time. And I believe that Zaid Hamid (i am not a fan or a supporter of the person) has a democratic right to speak and present his point of view. I am sure the LUMS student would like to welcome you at their campus and listen to what you have to say. And that is democracy!
Aurangzeb Khan
Mar 08, 2010 10:05pm
Ashok - They just want Pakistan military to stop killing innocent civilians, women and children, in their province. And seems like they are saying that if you kill people in their province, they will kill in your province.
Aurangzeb Khan
Mar 08, 2010 10:07pm
What did you expect? After so many blasts on the mud houses in the tribal area, killing poor innocent people, this was very much written on the wall.
Irfan
Mar 08, 2010 10:29pm
Maryam, I don't understand what you wish in having a leader like Shahbaz Sharif. You would not like to nutrition the banned terrorist organization in your neighborhood. Neither you would like to bear the burden of billions of rupees by your province so that Mr. leader can inaugurate something from tax payers' money.
Irfan
Mar 08, 2010 10:34pm
Aftab, You have denied your own feelings. True! every decent person will be a slave in Taliban rule.
Ahmad
Mar 08, 2010 10:35pm
Punjab is definitely wrong about their apathy towards Taliban, which can be overstated at times too, as is the case in this article. Lahore can definitely do more, but they haven't been sitting idle either. I remember a vigil held after the SL team got attacked, but definitely more is needed to be done, but before you go on accusing Punjab for not standing up to people, you might wanna remember that it was Punjab who sent Pervez Musharraf on its way, it was Punjab who got CJ restored, the lawyer's movement was a Punjab dominated Punjab centric movement with help from, wouldn't you know it, the PML-N, another Punjab centric party. Don't equate the armchair warriors with ordinary Punjabis who are not confused about Taliban, they can't be since they are the ones who suffer the most.
Irfan
Mar 08, 2010 10:36pm
Another best by NFP.... Bravo! Totally agree with you.
Ahmad
Mar 08, 2010 10:37pm
Haha...totally agree with shatir...
Ahmad
Mar 08, 2010 10:41pm
I'd rather we be 'afflicted' with extremists of the liberal kind than the Taliban kind. At least nobody would get blown up.
Neel,London
Mar 08, 2010 10:47pm
I am an Indian. It is the first article ,I have read in a Pakistani daily. I think pragmatic media people should come against any form of extremism whether it is religious, racial etc. In my view the intermixing of religion with politics is precarious and moderate section of the Pakistani society should come against it.
Pakistani
Mar 08, 2010 11:01pm
We as people of this country have collectively allowed what is happening to us, at every level (politicians, institutions, media, etc). God does not do injustice to anyone. It is the people who do injustice to themselves.
Mohan Kapur
Mar 08, 2010 11:10pm
Pakistanis need to learn from Indian Govt. about resolving the problems. Indian Punjab also had the problem of militant Khalistanis trying to take over Punjab in 1980's. But the central Govt. used sticks and carrots to break them away. The problem with Pakistan is that they never wake up and whole country is radicalized under their nose. Good Luck.
Razak Bombaywalla
Mar 08, 2010 11:44pm
Aftab Khan, why you are ready to become a slave of any one? Don't you have any pride?
Affan
Mar 09, 2010 12:00am
Nicely put Qasim. I have always felt NFP aspires to be a "great" journalist, but due to an inherent clash between the demands of fair journalism and his strong opinions and sarcastic style, he is an agent of polarization (much like Zaid Hamid, whom he so regularly targets).
Wyse Guy
Mar 09, 2010 12:02am
The reason students from Pakhtunkhwa, Balochistan, Sindh and Karachi are more verbally active against the extremists is simply because these provinces have suffered more than Punjab. Punjab also has a large population that is not bothered on a day to day basis by the traumatizing security issues like people in Sindh, Balochistan and Pakhtunkhwa face. Thus the people of Punjab can balm their day to day ennui with visions of jihad in Afghanistan and victory over India. That allows a negligent atmosphere where Jihadi/sectarian outfits can thrive in an underground fashion.
Berny
Mar 09, 2010 12:02am
Great article by someone who again proved to be another ignorant Karachi wala. So if terrorists bomb Lahore, Punjabis or its political parties are endorsing it?
JD SHAMI
Mar 09, 2010 12:21am
Mr. Paracha: I have been reading your columns. Why are you so angry with Pakistan and its people? You dislike Imran Khan, PML-N, JI and now Zaid Hamid. I believe that Zaid Hamid is a breath of fresh air for the youth at a time when the Pakistani nation is so down. Zaid Hamid is a patriotic man and that is why LUMS asked him to speak. Are you jealous that LUMS did not ask you?
Ali Mazbut
Mar 09, 2010 12:26am
Taliban is a problem, but we need to see what the underlying reason for their rise is. It is the same corruption, super power pleasing, and lack of a coherent government machinery, cohesive foreign policy planning and nepotism that has given rise to such extremism within us. NFP is trying to sow seeds of inter-provincial hatred and differences through his articles. What evidence does he cite for the hatred of Karachites against the Taliban, a few scribblings on the walls. We need the right kind of rhetoric, not biased, unsubstantiated statements. And as for LUMS allowing him to speak on campus, who decides who is jingoistic and who isn't, the campus is a center of learning, all view points are welcome. No one was forced to listen to him, he was just another speaker. The campus hosts all sorts of speakers ranging for far right to far left, and even encourages debates amongst them. Unfortunately, as is always the case, this article too was biased.
Xee
Mar 09, 2010 12:41am
I'm a little fussy on exact details of blackwater ! Its a lala land created by your so called sir. I'm deeply sorry for the hatred that has already been delivered in your veins which doesn't permit you to think beyond those limitations which has prior been set by Your dear Sir. Zaid Hamid and Imran Khan are not more than TV personalities which surely deserve being watched on television and have priority over WWE. But in a true sense it is WWE which is being played by these people in a sophisticated manner. Brain washing is nothing new my friend. Think big and broaden your spectrum, Islam doesn't permit hatred and violence. A Sir appears from nowhere and claims to be a messiah , No thank you !
Xee
Mar 09, 2010 12:49am
Lets have a second thought about fighting , why not changing? Why not a rebellious thinking should be developed? why not this system be changed?
malik101
Mar 09, 2010 12:57am
Then go to Talibanistan. Stop turning this country into one. Leave us alone.
malik101
Mar 09, 2010 01:02am
Yes even terrorists votes count.
hoss
Mar 09, 2010 01:09am
Paracha sahib, Who patronized these militants? Would you criticize these strategic asset owners.
proud pakisthani
Mar 09, 2010 01:37am
Too much of hatred is not good for any one. I still do not understand why none of rock start bands condemn Taliban openly. We need a strong leader who can condemn these killings done by Taliban. I agree that right wing people like Zaid hamid/Pro Taliban are very few in percentage in Pakistan but these hatred filled people are destroying Pakistan. Hope a new dawn with a new day filled with happiness will soon come to Pakistan and we will shine like a true star.
A Fan
Mar 09, 2010 01:49am
Heartfelt sympathy for all those who got affected by this awful tragedy. The fact that a premier institute of higher education allowed Zaid Hamid to speak in its premises perhaps caps it all. By providing space and legitimacy to a character who publicly glorifies religion-based war and killing, LUMS has done a great disservice to all its stakeholders including students and faculty (many are visiting faculty based in leading Western universities and now run the risk of being stigmatized by association). A public apology (or at least a statement of disassociation from the Zaid Hamid event) would be in order and might help restore some of the lost reputation.
Talib Hussain Malik
Mar 09, 2010 02:07am
Punjabis should fight and eliminate terrorism in Lahore, Rawalpindi and Islamabad. Punjab Government must take extra measures beside federation to save Punjab. Access of blasts in Punjab really reflects the involvement of Punjab rulers. Is Punjab's chief Minister is just to give the money to effected families that too not from his own account. Stop suspicious vehicles from entering Punjab.
waheed
Mar 09, 2010 02:49am
You are criticizing and apologizing at the same time.
Talib Hussain Malik
Mar 09, 2010 03:14am
Wake up Punjab, Thank you Mr. NFP. 1. Punjab must re-issue the transport plates, No entry in Punjab of any kind of transport from any province till not certified and computerized. No transport should move without fire proofed I.D card of owners. All provinces should issue fire proof I.D cards and number plates. 2. From Lahore higher education students must be returned to their original province, they should get education in respective provinces or abroad. We do not need this kind of education. Every student must report his visitors. 3. Beside federal forces, this is the utmost duty of Punjab Govt. to control and save Punjab. Only authorized religious leader should deliver Islam. There should be a kind of control up to some extent on religious leaders and religious gatherings. All mosques must be locked other than prayer times.
Ejaz Rashid
Mar 09, 2010 03:27am
I am saddened to read this write up.
PM
Mar 09, 2010 03:37am
Taliban bombs Lahore and NFP gets an opportunity to bash Punjab. If you have some positive solutions come to Lahore in an open forum, I promise no stone throwing.
Naushad Shafkat
Mar 09, 2010 03:42am
Mr. Paracha you are a born writer. A great piece showing the 'Khadim-e-Punjab' and his ilk in their true colors. After every attack comes a statement that the terrorists 'will not be allowed to kill more people' implying in effect that they were 'allowed' the last time around! Strange logic.
Hamza Laraib
Mar 09, 2010 03:50am
Brother Naif...I agree with you.
GP65
Mar 09, 2010 03:50am
I think Nadeem's exact point was that civil society in all other provinces openly opposes terrorism with the exception of Punjab. Wake up Pakistan would have been an appropriate title if the issue was common across Pakistan. But Nadeem bhai's point (which he gives several examples in support of) is that there are active vigilante movements in all other provinces (Sinadh, NWFP and Balochistan) against terrorism and Punjab should emulate those.
Abuzar
Mar 09, 2010 04:10am
Good article, I like it, we need more people who can put it as it is.
Syed Kashif
Mar 09, 2010 04:18am
I do agree with you.
Ali
Mar 09, 2010 04:28am
@Wazim
spade
Mar 09, 2010 04:36am
Nadeem has called a spade a spade. It is high time people, wake up and smell the coffee in Punjab instead of living in their make belief world. Although I am not a very big fan of N.F.P, especially his satire, I have to say that this analysis is amazing. His best that I have read so far. Keep it up man!
Gursharan
Mar 09, 2010 04:45am
Pakistan was created so that Muslims can be safe and secure. Are they? It was created so that Muslims can live life better than others. Instead - 70% are poor even after 60 years . Isn't it? Every Pakistani knows that their country is sinking. So i raise a question. Why not to undo what you did 50 years ago. But it is not possible. So why not try to create open borders. Open borders shall bring more trade and prosperity. It will create more jobs and opportunities.
spade
Mar 09, 2010 04:49am
No "Wake up Pakistan " would not be an appropriate headline because most of the country has waken up but this particular province has unfortunately not. At least not yet although hopefully that will change. And it seems you are reading too much into the blog. To accuse someone of "spreading ethnic hatred" is a pretty big thing, more so since there is nothing that Nadeem has said that falls into that category. People really do need to wake up. How ironic that the country is burning and still the "average PAKISTANI" is finding it difficult to cast aside his parochial suspicions.
Haider Khwaja
Mar 09, 2010 04:54am
I fully agree with the writer. Its about time that the leaders of the Punjab accept the ground reality and condemn the extremism in the country. As Einstein said, "The world is too dangerous to live in, not because of people who do evil, but because of people who sit and let it happen." We should out rightly condemns those politicians (Imran Khan, Sharif brothers, Rana Sanaullal, Jamaat-e-Islami and others) who have soft corners for the extremist elements. There was a time when the wave of terrorism was in Karachi. The foreign cricket teams refused to play in Karachi - no one paid any attention and thought its a Karachi's problem and simply moved the venue to either Lahore or Rawalpindi. Now look what's happening in whole Pakistan and no cricket team wants to play in the whole country.
spade
Mar 09, 2010 05:04am
I agree that it is disgusting that this guy was given a platform to further spew hatred, and by LUMS no less. However, I hope the students at LUMS challenged him and tried to show him some light. Too bad he was not pelted with stones like he was in Peshawar.
Kutbuddin
Mar 09, 2010 11:55am
Kudos Paracha for exposing Zaid Hamid.
spade
Mar 09, 2010 05:08am
Kudos indeed to NFP as well as the brave students of Peshawar.
spade
Mar 09, 2010 05:19am
This is a very well written piece. The following paragraph alone, not only written superbly, consists several points that we should, all of us, pause and reflect upon: "It is as if every time its leadership and people attempt to awkwardly repress the obvious lashings of fear and confusion that cut viciously across the province whenever there is a terrorist attack, they become more vocal in their condemnation of the present government at the center, incredibly investing more emotional and intellectual energy on abstract issues such as corruption, judiciary, and
hifsa
Mar 09, 2010 05:25am
I agree that Punjab is not waking up to the problem...we worry, we discuss but we are practically doing nothing about the problem...sometimes I feel it has to do something with Lahore's history, it has been destroyed so many times and its residents could do nothing. Anyway as for Zaid Hamid I think you are little obsessed with him...you are in fact making him a HERO.
Shandaar
Mar 09, 2010 11:51am
Well said Ayesha!
Fahad Asad
Mar 09, 2010 05:31am
NFP - some points of your articles do make sense at times ... BUT ... WHY WHY WHY ... does every thing that you start (at times quite logically) has to conclude with Zaid Hamid ... If you think he is an extremist then by the same definition you are one as well ... If he is extreme Right-wing then I am afraid you are an extreme Left wing!
vankirk
Mar 09, 2010 05:43am
I agree with you. If anything the nation needs to be more united than ever in fighting the scourge of criminals and terrorists on the payroll of foreign agencies. Lahore is a center of culture that belongs to all Pakistanis and we should be feel saddened by criminal acts there and any of our cities. The people of Punjab have voiced their earnest desire to rid the nation of criminals despite what the author believes. All the people of Pakistan have been united like never before so what kind of insinuation is NFP making? He seems to be on the payroll of one particular ethnic party which has clouded his judgment and objectivity. I wonder what the author's real agenda is- it seems he is just trying to score points on the criminal act of a group of terrorists. He should think instead of standing by Pakistan.
Ali W.
Mar 09, 2010 05:55am
I don't quite agree with this article. As I'm an educated Punjabi living in Lahore and so are all of my relatives. And none of us are in denial about the fact that Taliban or other extremist groups are behind these atrocious attacks. Your article is only fueling fire to the already existent ethnic divide (sadly); but rest assure that Punjabis are as aware of the extremists responsible for these attacks as people in other parts of the country. Also, Punjabis feel the pain for attacks anywhere on the soil of Pakistan; whether it be Sindh, Balochistan, or NWFP. As far as the govt. leaders are concerned, they are all in it for their own good regardless of which province they are in.
GP65
Mar 09, 2010 06:09am
Excellent point Marvi.
Shahid
Mar 09, 2010 06:14am
When will we talk about Pakistan? Why are we so obsessed with ethnicity? The whole Pakistan has suffered with this evil of terrorism, name a single city and province which has not been hit. Let's just stop this Punjab, Sindh, Baloch, or Frontier rubbish.
Naved Haider
Mar 09, 2010 06:24am
I agree with you Nadeem, PML(N) badly needs to correct their approach toward the philosophy of terrorism & the terrorist organizations. I myself have seen pictures of Punjab law minister standing beside the banned Sipah-e-sahaba leader in the election rally in Jhung. I ask what action has been taken against him by the top leadership of the party. Of course no action was taken. How come they can take an action when in the last PML(N) government, Shahbaz Sharif himself had taken a minister in the cabinet from siphah-e-sahaba, By that time also that organization was the biggest hate monger in the country. Unfortunately, behind all this terrorism/bloodshed and negative environment, particularly in Punjab some powerful politicians have their hidden role. It is about time to be on 'Sirat-e-mustaqeem".
ayesha Khan
Mar 09, 2010 06:25am
Imran says that the root cause of Taliban behavior is the American war against terror and drone attacks. That might be logical if Taliban were only attacking state symbols like FIA or ISI buildings or GHQ - whom they believe are supporting the American war on terror. But how does his explanation square with the fact that Taliban bombed helpless women and children in Moon Market and Meena Bazaar? That they bombed young kids playing volleyball? How does that explain suicide bombings of people praying in mosque? Has Imran ever criticized the bombing of hundreds of girls schools by Taliban. Isn't that strange from a man who claims Pakistan needs an education emergency? What about the flogging of women in Swat and destroying shops selling music CDs What does that have to do with revenge for drone attacks? Has he ever criticized such acts? In light of the above facts I have quoted do you still feel that Nadeem is factually incorrect when he calls Imran as pro-Taliban?
Sara
Mar 09, 2010 06:30am
Really shoddy piece of writing, I
javed afridi
Mar 09, 2010 07:36am
Stay out of Pakistani politics.
zubair hameed
Mar 09, 2010 07:48am
I disagree with Zaid Hamid as well, but pelting stones on his car is totally unjustified. As it was written in NFP's article, try to differentiate between hate and disagreement.
Sadiq Kamal
Mar 09, 2010 08:11am
The death toll is now 14 in the Lahore blast. But the sad part is our Int. Min. Rehman Malik has as usual put the blame on India and Israel, mentioning the Indian spy agency RAW. He said weapons bearing Indian marking were found and he concluded that they may have been smuggled from Afghanistan. Does he think that our literate public are fools? Does he take our intelligence for granted. The Taliban itself has come forward for this blast in revenge for their top leaders who were killed on Monday. Afghanistan has also blamed LET operating from our land for the killing of 12 Indians in Kabul last week. But Malik has said that Taliban were to blame. Now we are further losing our credibility in the world. No one in their right frame of mind believes our For. Min Qureshi, Rehman Malik and our For. Sec Bashir. Our govt. should ensure security and stop blaming all disasters on India. It wont be long before someone says our PM Zardari works for INDIA!! Daily we observe the Americans are putting pressure to do more on the war on terror .YA ALLAH!!
manoor warraich
Mar 09, 2010 06:52am
Mr Nadeem has hit the bull's eye in this article. He is completely correct. The leadership in Punjab has still not matured enough as compared to other provinces. We don't want the Punjabi politicians standing by the extremists and Taliban sympathizers. We hate to see our so called leaders running their election campaign side by side with such organizations. For God's sake, the people of Punjab, please wake up, mature up and shake up the system. Reject extremism, reject the self proclaimed experts like Zaid Hamid. Purge our Province from religious extremists and Taliban sympathizers.
Shaabbir Kazmi
Mar 09, 2010 06:54am
Wasim is right. This kind of headings show that we are not a nation but a cluster or groups having specific motives and agenda. It is also the reason we have not been able to put any resistance against external aggression.
Shaabbir Kazmi
Mar 09, 2010 07:01am
Sir, you are absolutely wrong. Karachi has put up the best resistance against all types of aggression. It has been targeted by external elements. The federation does not accept that its population exceeds 20 million and the city continue to get paltry allocations. People from all other provinces come here to make money, once they get rich they take it to their native towns. They live in this city but don't own it. Its police and many government officers belongs to other provinces. Sir look at what happened in Karachi on Ashura and Chehlum.
da Vinci
Mar 09, 2010 07:02am
The self-constructed eschatology of Hamid remains unchallenged in every TV channel. He does hate speech and intimidate everybody who contradicts his opinions. If he don't believe in the free speech for people he despise he don't believe in them at all.
saleem b
Mar 09, 2010 07:13am
Excellent NFP! May be your articles are changing views (at least of 200 to 400 people who read your blogs). May be more will join and support your efforts. It took at least a generation to reach this low and may take a few more to get back. Bless you and keep writing.
SQ Khan
Mar 09, 2010 07:15am
Have another thousand drones ....arrest and kill another 1000 terrorists. You will simply will not be able to stop terrorism. Lahore is a glaring warning for this. Its very easy for the militants to pick up any civilian target . You cannot blame government for that. Its impossible to secure each and every corner of the country. What Pakistan needs is a policy change. A realization that the society is radicalizing in a very fast pace due to the resentment towards engaging the foreign forces in the country to fight local people. Peace will remain a big question mark as long as we continue this efforts in this direction. While the west is looking for a short term strategy of "quashing the militants " by force and leave. All the so called " leaders " can condemn terrorism in their well guarded mansions,and the common people suffers. We need a shift in our mindset and policy to fight terror, knowing that terror is in minds of the people .
abhishek
Mar 09, 2010 10:27am
I can understand and support your feelings.
Mudassir
Mar 09, 2010 11:35am
So what are you suggesting? If you pay attention you will notice that NFP is also talking about changing the mentality of Punjab's politicians. When was the last time Sharif brothers condemned the Taliban?? Politician should really wake up come to the fact terrorism is not America's problem but Pakistan's.
kirit
Mar 09, 2010 03:52pm
I am sorry to say this but Pakistan was created on the basis of religion. Bad idea to begin with. Pakistan elite mixed religion with the business of state in its constitution. Again very bad idea. Pakistan is facing problems with extremism due to this mixing of religion and state. When Pakistani Elite understand this and change its constitution away from religion, Pakistan will become truly free country with chance to be peaceful and prosperous. Until then Pakistan will remain failed state with many problems.
Omer Alvi
Mar 09, 2010 11:32am
I am confused what the author is trying to imply. "Wake up Punjab"-- OK how and for what? Sir! what is "State of Denial"? Nothing but a cliche. Who is in state of denial? We have been bleeding and we know that and all we want is the end of it.
Amit
Mar 09, 2010 11:34am
Asif, most fair minded Pakistanis already know that, but the problem is that these fair minded people happen to be in a great minority in Pakistan. Its sad to see what is happening in Pakistan.
YLH
Mar 09, 2010 12:29pm
Nadeem, I am almost always in agreement with what you write.
Tariq
Mar 09, 2010 12:29pm
I am originally from Punjab now living and working in UK. I don't know if we Punjabi's' are hardwired in this way - we have a zealous belief in conspiracy theory. Every time something happens it is the outsider. always in denial never self examining.
Paracha
Mar 09, 2010 12:33pm
There are no good or bad terrorists. Let's bring all of them to justice.
Aamir
Mar 09, 2010 12:48pm
NFP is right.
Irfan Hussain
Mar 09, 2010 01:28pm
Here again I am a proud student of Peshawar University and Baluchistan University for keeping people like Zaid Hamid out of the valuable educational places.
Matilda Lahori
Mar 09, 2010 01:41pm
I am from LUMS and was one of the few who raised her voice against Zaid. As for NFP coming to LUMS, dear Shami, I am witness to many of my colleagues who have been asking NFP to come over for a talk. He continues to politely excuse himself.
Najam
Mar 09, 2010 01:41pm
Outside Pakistan I am Pakistani, inside Pakistan I am Punjabi, in Punjab I am Lahori, In Lahore I am chaudhary/butt/iraein........ I wish people could start treating me like a human being. Peace.
Matilda Lahori
Mar 09, 2010 01:42pm
Quite frankly, yes.
Matilda Lahori
Mar 09, 2010 01:46pm
And you still continue to read him?
Matilda Lahori
Mar 09, 2010 01:48pm
Which is even worse!
mohammed ali jawaid
Mar 09, 2010 01:56pm
Well said Mr. SQ Khan. The whole country is suffering from this terrorist menace, but we are not fighting it out as a war is fought though it is called 'war on terror'. There should be a state of emergency where the whole nation must be mobilized against the terrorists, whoever and wherever they are.
Deadhead
Mar 09, 2010 02:03pm
This gentleman has just came back from a Zaid hamid's lecture. :)
Deadhead
Mar 09, 2010 02:05pm
Paracha dost, you must go on. Kudos.
Aquib Mir
Mar 09, 2010 02:46pm
Speaking of 'democratic' student organizations that pelted stones at Zaid Hamid's entourage, is this a democratic way to encounter someone whom you don't agree with? Anyone can disagree with Zaid Hamid, but he has the right to speak his mind.
Fersos
Mar 10, 2010 11:30am
It is very easy to blame the Government after every terrorist incident. The Government cannot keep a watch on what every citizen is doing. Pakistan is facing a very difficult situation. Citizens should help the Police by reporting every shady activity going on in their neighborhood. The Police force should be increased by at least 50% and sufficient resources should be invested on their training. It is the beat Constable who has to be empowered as he can easily monitor who is coming and going, in every Moholla. Secondly, access to education must be provided to every citizen. Make education free at school level so that the poor are not forced to send their children to Madarassas. In many states in India the literacy improved dramatically when the local Government introduced free mid day meals in all Government schools. The poor who sent their children to work started sending them to school. Islam is a religion of brotherhood and Love, not violence. Those disturbing Society and practicing violence must be held and expeditiously prosecuted like ordinary Criminals.
Shabab
Mar 09, 2010 02:50pm
People of Punjab have full right to live happily. Their mothers have a full right to see their children prosperous. Though, the Pak army is fighting the extremist, but I have no clue why the politicians belonging to Punjab are so reluctant to condemn Taliban?
Naved Haider
Mar 09, 2010 02:52pm
Dear Berny, At times your desire and deeds don't match. That is exactly the case with PML (N). Their leadership wants peace for Punjab and at the some time take part in a election rally with a banned organization. They don't condemn extremist groups in a loud and clear manner. In Karachi, people feel that PML (N) leadership have soft corner in their heart for the extremist and biased version of Islam. I disagree with you that Nadeem is "an other ignorant Karachi wala". rather I think you need to contemplate over his opinion with an open mind.
Surinder Dhupar
Mar 09, 2010 03:27pm
Shifting blame is very easy - be it India or Pakistan. Finding solution to the problems may not be that easy. All poor countries of the world have these problems. My parents (who were born in Pakistan and settled in India) always said - British raj was better, there was some discipline and order. I pray for the lost lives. For no fault of theirs they are gone. I have realized that you can never have a calm ocean. These problems will not completely go away from our countries. Education may be the key to solving these issues as it empowers people to see what is good and bad for them. Politicians are deciding what is good and bad for us and most of the politicians are not that good.
Jawad
Mar 09, 2010 04:04pm
Well said Ali. Sadly your article picks on the ethnic divide which has already messed up this great land. I don't blame Punjab or Sindh or any other other province for that matter, our leadership is simply WEAK and not ABLE to take a stand. Our so called leaders have simply failed to run the country as needed. When will we start respecting ourselves. If we cannot then why will others? @ NFK ...Why don't you call your next article... WAKE UP, Pakistan!
Madan
Mar 09, 2010 04:20pm
A great article indeed. But all is not lost. But before we can cure our ills, we must know what ails us. There is an insightful article on the current situation in the latest issue of the Newsweek of dated March 15, titled Terror Has a New Name. And this new and rising international terror outfit, according to the author, is the Lashkar-e-Taiba that perpetrated the Mumbai attack. According to the author, this group is emerging as an international threat far more dangerous then al Quada. They add that the leadership of this group and the followers live and thrive openly right under the very noses of the state and Federal Governments in the Punjab. So we have a dangerous situation that people in power are bent an encouraging in the belief that such groups are part of their strategic assets in their hostility towards India, home to more Muslims than the entire population of Pakistan. As far as India is concerned, set on course of economic development and experiencing currently a growth of phenomenal and unprecedented level, the last thing she wants is a confrontation with Pakistan that could only hurt such growth, one that is so badly needed by its starving millions. The Indians are also not so foolish as to think that they can conquer Pakistan. So let us all work for the poor on both sides of the divide. Let us get rid of hate and hate mongers and extremists. This realization is what is needed as a first step if we are to cure our ills. Incidentally, the current leadership in the Punjab, let us not forget, was planning on making Nawaz Sharif the Amir through a constitutional amendment before he was thrown out by the last dictator. Now that Sharif and his group are back in power, in Punjab is It is any surprise that all these religious extremists find a friendly soil in that state? Will the people of Punjab ever wake up?
Sum
Mar 09, 2010 05:08pm
Regardless who we blame for these continuous string of attacks and tragedies, in the end, it is the responsibility of the leadership to protect their citizens, but they are too weak to have a grip on it unfortunately. Also unfortunately, it shows how weak and unsafe the democratic rule is in Pakistan. Nothing to be proud of. It has for sure compromised it's security and the lives, well being and dignity of it's people.
Mehreen
Mar 09, 2010 05:14pm
Do you know what the definition of Patriot is? From Webster's dictionary "one who loves his or her country and supports its authority and interests" ...does this really seem to characterize Zaid Hamid? If you think so then you are the one who is delusional.
Anoop
Mar 09, 2010 05:42pm
"Once I complete my undergrad I am moving out." That is strong, unfortunate statement. But, I don't blame you.
amesh
Mar 09, 2010 06:04pm
People like Z.H. will destroy Pakistan, all he knows is hate and lies. He is not doing any good to the situation in the country. Good work Nadeem, people like Z.H should be exposed.
Q man
Mar 09, 2010 06:19pm
Yet another misguided analysis by a confused writer. Why are you so against Imran Khan and certain parties? It's time to grow up and start to be an objective journalist. Terrorists and criminals are being defeated throughout the country. Sure there will be the invariable backlash from the criminals still operating but overall they are being defeated by Pakistan. A great part of that effort to defeat the criminals has come from the very Punjab government you seem to accuse of apathy. Why are the majority of people of Punjab happy with their elected representatives? They work and provide results. Talk to anyone outside of Punjab province and they envy the level of responsibility given by Shahbaz Sharif. If he stays in the Punjab government for another 3 years, you will see the Punjab modernize further.
Hasan Mahmood
Mar 09, 2010 06:28pm
He has never condemned any Taliban act. So stop with the silly comments.
Samyak Gowda
Mar 10, 2010 09:34am
Looks like there are millions in Pakistan who live in complete denial and lies. Propaganda is easy to spread in Pakistan and get people to believe them. Trust me it would take a lot more in any country.
Abbas
Mar 10, 2010 05:43am
Dear Mr. NFP...Let me inform you that I'm born Lahori...and i don't take your words once it for all. The idea that my brothers in Sindh are much enlighten and moderate doesn't impress me neither does the words moderate. I'm proud Pakistani, Punjabi Muslim who doesn't believe in the version of Taliban's Islam and neither does the rest (99%) of Lahore or Punjab. Now you can argue that people don't raise their voice and slogans and that is because may be we have not witnessed great tragedies in our city like people in Karachi..so people of Karachi are much mature, aware of the fact that what a bullet or a bomb can do to innocent human. I think we should be proactive in declaring that we follow the Islam according to the HOLY Quran and teachings of Propeht MUHAMMED (P.B.U.H) and not of these terrorist...I ask my brothers in Lahore to voice their condemnation in such a way so that you don't have to write another article on that.....come on Lahore and Punjab, show them the Islam of Sufi's.....Take Care N.F.P!
malik
Mar 09, 2010 07:07pm
True! Thanks.
Zar in US
Mar 09, 2010 08:16pm
I love reading Nadeem's writings. Keep up the good work!!
Syed Ovais Sarwar
Mar 09, 2010 08:32pm
I request all Punjabi people please wake up!!
Syed Ovais Sarwar
Mar 09, 2010 08:42pm
"we condemn" Shatir only this sentence they learned by heart. Other wise they don't know what to say.
SHUB
Mar 09, 2010 09:28pm
There is a very thin line between Patriotism and Nationalistic views. As has been pointed out so correctly in this article, Hamid and Co. are war mongers and hate preachers who need to be confronted with the truth that exists out there. Wake up my dear friend !! Wake up !
Naeem
Mar 09, 2010 09:29pm
Well said SQ Khan. This is what the citizens and government of Pakistan need - 'Change in mindset' and not only towards terrorism. The first step to achieve this would be to abolish the feudalism system from Pakistan.
ANUJ
Mar 10, 2010 09:07am
Dear Asif and Sunjoy, there are people of Indian origin who have been called for questioning internationally. Second, Punjab province of Pakistan is not yet as touched by the Taliban as others. Let them solve their problem. We hope they realize there IS ONE and do something for themselves. We are no one to judge them.
jkpakitani
Mar 09, 2010 10:11pm
I guess they are smarter than us ? No trace, like in 1971, divided the country by training Muktibahini's traitros?
Qasim Nizamani
Mar 09, 2010 10:20pm
I fully agree with NFP. Keep it up!
Aniket Sharma
Mar 09, 2010 10:30pm
Hi NFP, I am one of your silent readers from Hyderabad, India. I do not know first hand about the situation in Pakistan Punjab (especially the present frame of mind of the people). What you have described may very well be true, for all I know. But you know what, for all I know, it may as well be not true. I would definitely not call this one of your better written pieces. You have given some opinions, but have almost nowhere backed them with facts. Someone has rightly pointed out that the mood of a city cannot be gauged by a few graffiti here and there. In the same manner, LUMS inviting Hamid does not mean that LUMS have been swept in a wave of extremism. On the other hand, this does show them as open and transparent. What would you say if the faculty/ student body discussed about what Hamid had said after he had gone and come to the conclusion that it was hogwash? That would be even better that not inviting him at all, wouldn't it? Did you explore that angle? I have the highest respect for your intentions and I do think that you can make the difference. Everybody wants the world in general, and Pakistan and India in particular to be out of the grip of extremism. However, words written towards this direction have to be more measured than this article.
Naeem
Mar 09, 2010 10:45pm
Well said SQ Khan. Pakistan needs a change in mindset. This could only be started by abolishing feudalism from Pakistan.
sardar imam
Mar 09, 2010 10:55pm
I agree with Mr Moeed. It is a very disappointing piece of writing that is promoting ethnic strife in Pakistan. Once again, Mr NFP has blamed the people of Punjab for something that they are not responsible for. The government justifiably gets the blame for ignoring the issue, but certainly not the people. The fact that there is no wall chalking in Lahore nor any militant reaction to the Taliban reflects the more mature response of the people. The fact that Lahori students don't throw stones on people speaks of the quality of their person and their education. The fact is, that the "educated" students must hear both sides of the picture. Restraining people like Mr Zaid Hamid would be pretty much similar to the censorship tactics of the Zia/Musharraf era. Our intellectual development depends on hearing both sides of the story. By the same token, should people like you be banned from talking in Lahore or Punjab? Certainly not. You have the right to share your opinion and we must be intelligent enough to realize the weak arguments in writings such as these. Please, please, Mr NFP. Leave Punjab alone. We are Pakistanis foremost, feel the pain of every other Pakistani.
butseriouslyok
Mar 09, 2010 11:00pm
Pakistan seems to be controlled by a committee (army) comprising of generals with different agendas. Politicians may be corrupt but at any one point you know who is in charge with a strong democratic govt. Dictatorship is almost always bad but even then you have one person that can be negotiated with. As of today you have Zaid & Gul and kin, Pakistan Taliban, Afghan Taliban, Army, ISI, Lakshar (several) and the elected govt. Even the supreme court justice makes noises every now and then? Most other countries people wouldn't know who their Chief of Army, Chief of Intelligence Services or Supreme Court Justice is. Everybody in Pakistan is operating tactically with no strategy for the nation. In a way, Pakistan should pray for America's success in the war, because that is likely to stabilize Pakistan sooner than it can do it by itself...the sooner the Pakistani's realize that this is a war against its own army and intelligence services the better it is...think of the children and the future generation.
Fraz
Mar 10, 2010 09:09am
You have raised a very valid concerns. NFP keep it up. You have the courage to write the truth.
Waqas
Mar 10, 2010 10:11am
NFP has a point, Sara. He's very subtle with it, though. Just as he loves to point out the conspiracy theory loving Pakistanis who blame India and Israel for every terrorist attack in Pakistan, NFP is demonstrating how he does EXACTLY the same thing: blames every terrorist act on the so-called misguided Punjab government and Punjabi people. See, everyone likes to pin the blame on others and not take responsibility.
Akil Akhtar
Mar 10, 2010 02:16am
Do move out Pakistan does not need people like you. We hate Taliban but that does not mean we should hate Pakistan.
Akil Akhtar
Mar 10, 2010 02:23am
"The media is Punjabi dominated" what a wrong statement. Most of the private TV channels and their newspapers are all operated from Karachi. The media actually is and has been Karachi dominated since the birth of Pakistan. No wonder you never see or hear any criticism of MQM anywhere. In 64 years hardly a small minority of our PMs and presidents have been from Punjab and still Punjab is blamed for ruling over everyone. Similar false propaganda is being dished out by NFP now by claiming that the media is Punjabi dominated. You have lost credibility in order to further your own agendas and biases.
Sunjoy
Mar 10, 2010 04:06am
Dear Asif, well said....You have clearly stated how we Indians are different from the Pakistanis. I hope the Pakistanis understand this.
Diep
Mar 10, 2010 05:57am
Proud of you NFP, keep up the good work, Zaid hamidist mindset is never going to praise you.
Afridi
Mar 10, 2010 06:00am
Anti Taliban graffiti in Karachi, does not make it violence free. Zaid Hamid can speak and has the ability to win hearts, like a war hero. He has the ability to boil your blood while you lay back. We need people like Zaid, who can wake us up! Army is our hero, Pakistanis are our heroes, Americans aren't. Punjab is by far much better than Sindh in terms of tackling the crime.
AK
Mar 10, 2010 06:00am
I must say, the LUMS episode has been blown way out of proportion, not only by NFP but also by most of the readers and worthy people who have just not bothered to know the facts and just believed what has been written. I am a LUMS alumni and I was there at the time when Zaid Hamid was invited to speak. People who have just heard about LUMS and have never been there have a very different point of view about the institution. It is one institute which truly grooms its students in a variety of ways. All of the activities taking place in LUMS that make headlines are purely organized by students. There are a number of student societies and executive clubs which carry out variety of activities, be it an entertainment event, a corporate confluence, a business games competition, a young entrepreneurs summit or a guest speaker session. The student societies at LUMS have invited a number of people both from right and left to hear their point of view. If somebody is invited to speak at an institution, it does not imply by any measure that the institution hails that person. And had NFP or any other person been present in that session where Zaid Hamid spoke, they would have seen how Zaid Hamid was grilled by students when it came to the question hour. Plus, Zaid Hamid was not the only one who has spoken at LUMS. Haider Abbad Rizvi from MQM was also invited to speak to LUMS students. Imran Khan has been to LUMS, Ehsan Iqbal has spoken there, Junaid Jamshed has been there and many other prominent people from the political scene. So pointing the finger at LUMS just because of the fact that Zaid Hamid was invited to speak there is not appropriate. If NFP wants that the students of LUMS should have protested the way students did from Peshawar University, then i must say that one should act in a civilized manner to express his/her point of view. Throwing stones at the entourage, in my opinion, does not present a very good and plausible way of expressing your feelings.
Harris
Mar 10, 2010 07:42am
You are talking what the media has taught you.
Iqbal
Mar 10, 2010 06:44am
High time, we should call back General Musharaf to fix this situation.
Aurangzeb Khan
Mar 10, 2010 07:04am
I believe right now every decent or indecent person is a slave of some western Consulate.
Musa
Mar 10, 2010 09:27am
Dear AK, I believe that if Zaid Hamid represents extreme right then NFP represents extreme left. Both are bias and try to promote their own point of views. Both of them are finding admirers and are thinking that they are bringing a silent revolution.
Waqas
Mar 10, 2010 10:36am
Unlike stone throwing educated illiterates, LUMS believes in developing the intellect of its students by promoting diversity of opinion and free speech. It has invited speakers from opposed political and religious views on several occasions and it leaves it to the students to make their judgments. I'm sorry but it seems you haven't had the privilege to experience LUMS firsthand but I would suggest you, stop making generalizations about people without knowing them first.
Musa
Mar 10, 2010 09:34am
Well said Abbas, the fact that religious parties got less than 4% votes in recent by elections in Rawalpindi is not enough to convince Mr. Paracha that Punjabis are moderate people.
AK
Mar 10, 2010 10:40am
I agree with you Musa. It is up to the audience to decide.
Ali
Mar 10, 2010 01:54pm
Why Punjab? Are the Sindhis and Karachiites more enlightened, liberal, moderate?
Naved Haider
Mar 10, 2010 02:32pm
Mohan, Please don't misuse the opportunity to criticize Pakistan as a whole. We also have lot to say about India. But we don't think like you. If you have some thing positive & constructive to contribute you are most welcome to the blog. Indian Punjab problem was a local issue, terrorism is a global problem. Don't over simplify the matter, Pakistan has the ability to take care of it. Thank you for your concern.
Saad Khan
Mar 10, 2010 03:26pm
The extremist needs to be condemned and eliminated, whether the one with a gun or the one with a microphone.
Jahan zaib
Mar 11, 2010 10:53am
No, such a biased article.
Abdur Rehman
Mar 10, 2010 06:20pm
Well said Aniket.
Tanveer Khan
Mar 10, 2010 11:20pm
Awesome point..
ali
Mar 11, 2010 02:55am
This is exactly the attitude that has proven to be so self destructive. Blame others but don't accept the reality. Not very helpful I must say.
ali
Mar 11, 2010 02:59am
Ever heard of Rana Sanaullah-the Punjab law minister- and his recent conduct in Jhang? It is an eye opener.
Junaid
Mar 11, 2010 03:08am
Agree 100%
Junaid
Mar 11, 2010 03:11am
Well Said Shami but NFP will keep on writing against Imran, PML-N and Zaid Hamid.
ali
Mar 11, 2010 03:17am
I would urge you to reread the article. Nadeem has a point. And has made his point very well. When was the last time some of those pseudo-intellectuals of Punjab and PML-N condemned the acts of Islamic militants instead of blaming the violence on as-of-yet invisible "foreign hand?"
Junaid
Mar 11, 2010 03:18am
Agree!
ali
Mar 11, 2010 03:20am
Yes people of Punjab have spoken but the party of Punjab certainly has not.
Junaid
Mar 11, 2010 03:21am
Well said and I agree with you. But NFP will not listen.
ali
Mar 11, 2010 03:22am
Excellent piece as usual by Nadeem.
Hammad
Mar 11, 2010 03:51am
You don't have any right to write "the Pakhtunkhwa". Unless or until it has been written in our constitution. And at the same time give some positive suggestions instead of only pointing fingers.
Kashif Nawaz Shaikh
Mar 11, 2010 08:05am
Well though I don't agree with the writer that Punjabi people and its Government does not care much about terrorism and enlighted enough but I do agree that all the Pakistani's need to come more closer to reality on terrorism and condemn in its strongest terms. The Government of PML (N) should also do the same.
Sajjad
Mar 11, 2010 11:23am
NFP, Keep it up.
Sajjad
Mar 11, 2010 11:27am
The Basic point that NFP is trying to make is Punjab government should condemn.
Najaf
Mar 11, 2010 01:43pm
Pakistan was created on the basis of religion but not terrorism. Terrorism appeared on the scene in early 80s. Please do not talk of things that you are not aware of. Visit Pakistan before jumping to the conclusion that Pakistan if a failed state!
rabnawaz
Mar 11, 2010 06:36pm
Nadeem, Your always object Imran Khan. Can you tell me is there is something wrong with his party vision? if so highlights that and if not then plsease be positive. You are a biased writer. You never mentioned about the popular vote he got in bye elections at Lahore, Swat and Lakii except you mentioned Rawalpindi.
Pakistani in US
Mar 11, 2010 09:54pm
It appears from what you said that you do genuinely care about about pakistan and its problems (like rest of us) but you just don't know it yet. I am equally frustrated as you are but that doesnt mean one should leave their homeland, their beloved country on basis of these temporary problems. Identifying problems and finding solutions is good but finding a way out never helps. And leaving your own home burning? no sensible person does that. Take it from me, I am living in US but there isnt a single moment i dont miss lahore, pakistan and my people. Its not just me ... atleast all south asian (indain, pakistanis etc) share very strong feelings towards their homeland. Leave your country if you have to but with right motivations (educations, experience etc) because even when you are thousands of miles away, you leave a part of your soul behind and that connection..that feeling is always there.. Life has taught me one lesson and Its true for current situation in pakistan as well. When you see no hope and no light at the end of the tunnel, close your eyes take a deep breath and know this shall pass too. We have so many problems in pakistan but there are more good things happening than bad ones. Stay focused on good stuff and calmly try to find solution for bad ones. Take one thing at a time and I am sure we'll eventually get out of this mess.
vankirk
Mar 11, 2010 10:58pm
How can you say that. Dictatorship is the reason we have the current mess. If the General was a big part of the problem, how can he ever be part of the solution? No one doubts that Pakistan has done a good job of putting the terrorists and criminals on the run over the last year or so. Some terrorist may continue to attack innocents senselessly but all Pakistanis condemn their actions. The criminals know that their days are numbered despite some desperate attempts to bomb innocent people and government places.
Umair
Mar 12, 2010 03:40am
Once again, NFP has raised some very important points. The ruling partyof Punjab needs to wake up and accept that there is a serious problem facing the region's inhabitants and that steps must be taken to address the situation. We must say enough is enough. Punjab deseves better. And Pakistan deserve better.
Umair
Mar 12, 2010 03:43am
Ever heard of freedom of expression?
Sufi
Mar 12, 2010 10:31pm
Khan you better watch for those fantastic dorne that can hit a needle from mile high. Run before you take another innocent life in Lahore. Do you condemen Taliban's bombing of innocent childern and women in Peshwar?
Sufi
Mar 12, 2010 10:36pm
Great point you make, very non-biased like most Indian readers who simply think every Pakistani is an extremist. Thanks for being an open minded and connecting with mind-like people. You will find Pakistanis are very moderate and pro-India. People like Hamid could not make any changes despite all the free time he gets on the main stream media.
fahad
Mar 12, 2010 11:27pm
I couldn't agree more with NFP. Our people are suffering really bad and yet PMLN it seems is living in a completely different planet. PMLN needs to sort its priorities. All the hullabaloo about corruption and 14th amendment and judiciary ill behooves a party that has yet to unequivocally renounce terrorism. It is sad that these members of the so called "educated" political elite are misleading the common man on street who already had myriad problems to face even before the specter of terrorism came to haunt us. I really hope that sanity prevails soon.
fahad
Mar 12, 2010 11:30pm
That is the gist of NFP's blog. I don't know why is it that some people are having difficulty understanding what he has written.
fahad
Mar 12, 2010 11:44pm
I disagree with you that all south asians have similar feelings as you about their ancestral land, wherby they miss it all the time. I don't think that is the right attitude and I for one certainly don't feel that way even though I spent most of my childhood in Pakistan. I am very lucky to live in the States as well and I certainly wish well for Pakistan but my "homeland" is my country, not Pakistan. I am American first and foremost and I owe all my educational and economic success to America. I am saying this because those of us in the diaspora should count our blessings instead of feeling nostalgic all the time about some other country.
fahad
Mar 12, 2010 11:45pm
Agree with you completely S.A.M.
fahad
Mar 12, 2010 11:56pm
I agree completely with you. And it is an excellent article by NFP, better in fact than his usual writing. Somehow it reminds me of poetry of Iqbal about the need to wake up from slumber. I guess a hundred or so years after he wrote, we are confronted with yet another situation, more grave than ever before, where Pakistanis need to wake up. Punjab needs to act decisively against the menace facing the province and the leadership must show some courage in confronting the situation instead of living in denial.
fahad
Mar 12, 2010 11:58pm
Yes. Your comment, that is.
Saqib Ilyas
Mar 13, 2010 08:04am
What nonsense! Is the response of any other provincial government different from Punjab provincial government after a terror attack? I can think of differences that defeat your point, but all of them seem to be doing what you mentioned: condemnation. Get a life!
zafar jafri
Mar 13, 2010 11:39am
Very timely wake-up call. Its not the people of Punjab,but their system to grab the entire country to rule, through 90% military, 95% police ,85% beaurocracy,70% judiciary, 90% religious extremism since 1958, that has brought this unfortunate country to this state. History is the best reminder, but who cares? East Pakistan is long forgotten. Every one must get his rightful share, or history will repeat itself.
Pakistani in US
Mar 14, 2010 08:52am
I live in San Francisco and know a lot of Pakistani Americans out here who either spent few years or have parents from Pakistan - and everybody feel an emotional attachment to her - albeit in varying degrees. It's a bit odd that you don't but hey it's your life. Just to be clear I have the highest esteem for American society, their work ethics and their attitude towards life. I love my life here and thankful for all the opportunities I got but part of my identity is Pakistani and I have nothing but great memories of her. So if you think that feeling concerned on what's happening there translates into feeling nostalgic all the time about some other country - I would disagree too. But to be fair my earlier comment was bit poignant in tone, so It might have given you a wrong impression. I was only commenting on the morality of his reason to leave the country. And that even holds true in American society. Ask any sensible American (born and bred in US) about how he/she feels about leaving her if things start to go haywire and you at least wont get a similar response or something along the lines: let's get the hell out of here since we are done getting our piece of the pie. And just to give you an example, a large majority of negative comments from Indians (some of them rightful) on Pakistan comes from Indian Americans.. so based on your theory, how come they don't forget about India?
Rafaay
Mar 13, 2010 08:23pm
It is funny that a slightly critical article is dismissed as "promoting ethnic strife" by the same people who are happy to raise the provincial card whenever it comes to reserving more resources for them. Don't you think that when Punjab insists upon having a lion share of "quotas" for jobs and college seats as well as that of water and state money earned elsewhere, it promotes "ethnic strife" to a much much greater extent?
Rafaay
Mar 13, 2010 08:25pm
I second Mr. Paracha. Please Punjab wake up!!!
Ali Shaikh
Mar 13, 2010 09:14pm
Well said.
Ibrahim Raja
Mar 17, 2010 08:43am
For those who are making a big deal out of Shahbaz Sharif's statement should realize that Shahbaz Sharif is not a prime minister but a chief Minister.
Huda
Mar 17, 2010 09:48am
Nadeem Sahib this is wonderful. Why are we more ready to blame India every time there's a terrorist attack, than condemn the obvious perpetrators/demand better governance from our government? I think you are doing our country a great service. Please keep them coming.
Pakistani in US
Mar 17, 2010 10:17am
Dear Yasir, I left Pakistan for similar reasons as you four years ago. I am finishing my undergrad in the US this year. Living in such a wonderful society makes me feel sorry for Pakistanis. I have decided to move back and serve my country, try to make a difference to the lives of its people. I didn't use to give a damn. I think America did this to me. There are very few of us who understand what requires to be fixed in Pakistan. You clearly are one of them. Therefore you are direly needed. If we all pack up and leave, what will become of the country? We will be directly responsible for leaving the ship to sink. You can leave, that's fine. I understand because I did. But I hope you realize someday that it feels better to feed others than to be fed yourself. Besides, trust me, it feels better to be a big fish in a small pond than a small fish in the big pond. In Pakistan people like you are a rarity. Therefore it is easier to make a difference and be noticed. Best wishes.
gP65
Mar 18, 2010 02:45pm
Wake Up Punjab does not create any distrust. But a chief minister saying to the main terrorists and tormentor groups that we share your anti-Americanism , so you must spare Punjab - does create distrust. The fact that a minister from Punjab openly meets with banned terrorist groups in order to get votes also creates distrust. Put the blame for the distrust where it belongs - to senior politicians who are in charge of security situation and are behaving irresponsibly. Not on a write who is crying himself hoarse to create awareness.
gP65
Mar 18, 2010 02:50pm
Sufi bhai, Just as you say that most Pakistanis are moderate and pro-India, you will find that most Indians have no interest in a war which destroys both countries.SO your assumption that most Indians are anti-Pak is not correct. In both countries the moderate majorities tend to be silent. I hope Pakistan is able to vanquish these terrorists and finds peace.
gP65
Mar 18, 2010 02:55pm
This article shows that people of Punjab needs to wake up. It is not saying that they are weak or any such thing. Punjab is tolerating pro-terrorist politicians like Shahbaz Sharif and Sanaullah Khan. That is what Nadeem meant by Wake-Up Punjab.
gP65
Mar 19, 2010 05:32am
Imran Khan's parties vision is compromise with Taliban, No commitment to democracy is also seen through the fact that in 13 years PTI has never had an organizational election. The lack of commitment to rule of law is seen by Imran himself being unwilling to submit to a law court in Los Angeles. On the one hand, he says law should apply to everyone including Zardari and yet he says Aafia Siddiqui's conviction should be ignored. Too many contradictions.
gP65
Mar 19, 2010 02:32pm
Your sarcasm on Nadeem is as sharp as his sarcasm on Punjab government. The only difference is he is able to back up his sarcasm by facts and data.
gP65
Mar 19, 2010 02:38pm
No. terrorist bombing Lahore does not indicate that Punjabis are tolerant of terrorism. But PML-N refusing to criticize Taliban, its ministers openly meeting leaders of banned terrorist organization and yet winning seats in Punjab by-election shows that people are OK with terrorism. In Swat, parties like ANP who strongly opposed terrorism won seats , candidates of parties like PTI who are pro-Taliban lost their deposit.
gP65
Mar 19, 2010 02:39pm
Sorry. Karachi has not suffered more from terrorism than Punjab. Your hypothesis is not supported by facts.
jawaid
Mar 20, 2010 06:39pm
Then he should keep himself to the province stop his incessant nonsense about corruption and amendments to PAKISTAN's constitution.
jawaid
Mar 20, 2010 06:43pm
Punjab's government is not even doing the condemnation. Instead it is trying to reason with the Taliban, given them legitamacy and pleading with them!
Lourie Sovereign
Mar 23, 2010 06:26pm
nice. thanks
Dr. Sanjeev Chhiber
Mar 27, 2010 06:34am
We are brothers. yes. I am from Pind dadan Khan and hunza. Now I live in new Delhi We need to behave like brothers. Yes. I am a nationalist. I have always advocated a very hard line but the way trouble is being fanned by the most evil nation in the world, the USA, makes me write this. More arms, more strength to the ISI, the poor people of Pakistan will be the worst hit. India will plod on. But we can live together. But We don't even try.
ayesha Khan
Mar 28, 2010 08:58pm
So? Is it Okay for a chief minister of a state to - encourage a group that is oppressing and terrorising the whole country? - claim that the values of his party are the same as the terrorist group? A requirement of every Pakistani citizen is to be loyal to Pakistan - not just the Prime Minister of Pakistan. So as a very privileged citizen of Pakistan, has he done his duty of being patriotic to Pakistan by supporting the same TTP, that the country's army is trying to fight a war with?
ayesha Khan
Mar 28, 2010 09:02pm
Not just quiet about TTP? But actively contributing funds to banned movements like LeT, JeM, Siph-e-Shaba, Lashkar-e-Jhangvi. These groups directly hurt Pakistan through their terror attacks on Pakistan and indirectly make Pakistan's situation difficult through terror attacks on India.
ayesha Khan
Mar 28, 2010 09:12pm
Is Imran committed to democracy? - If so would he have supported Musharraf in 1999 in deposing an elected government? - would he not have held party elections at least once? - would his party's constitution give hi as an individual the right to expel anyone at will? Is he as pro-Islam /anti_USA as he claims? - what does Islam say about having a child with a woman who is not his wife? - after Musharraf's post 9-11 U-turn in supporting USA and opposing the Taliban, why did he continue to support Musharraf in 2002? - he makes fun of Westernised Pakistani youth as people who really do not know the religion. Why does he not raise his own sons as Muslims? - Why is he constantly meeting senators from US and giving press conferences and visiting that country regularly? Does he truly believe in equal justice for all? - Why then does he feel that Aafia should not face consequences despite being convicted by court of law? Why does he not speak up in favour of hundreds of Baloch women who are in a worse situation in their own country? - why does he not submit to the ruling of the Los Angeles court against him? - Does he only support those rulings that he favours and oppose those that against him /his opinions? Is that his concept of equality before law?
ayesha Khan
Mar 28, 2010 09:15pm
IF that were the case, then they would only attack military , ISI and police. What is the logic of killing people who are prayng in mosques? Of women and children in Moon market and Meena bazaar? Sorry your logic does not hold.
ayesha Khan
Mar 28, 2010 09:18pm
But what about PML-N? A party that openly says its values are similar to Taliban? Whose leaders openly meet leaders of banned militant outfits?
ayesha Khan
Mar 28, 2010 09:23pm
Terror prevention happens by - dismantling the terror infrastructure - not allowing maulvis to give hate speech in mosques - not allowing leaders of banned outfits to openly give speeches and collect money - using intelligence to intercept the plans and arrest the perpetrators ahead of time. Trying to stop terror by checking a suicide bomber who is already on his way is too little too late. .
Blondell Ziko
Apr 06, 2010 05:50am
I