THE issue of the demolition of a mosque in Karachi was a topic of much discussion in recent days. Without touching the legal aspect of the argument, I would like to highlight the reactions of people through their comments and attitude that is totally against the basic essence of Islam.

Saving the status of a mosque can be a common interest of many people, but posting filthy remarks and even crossing the limits of mannerism and decency on the pretext of supporting Islam or mosque speak volumes of the character quirks in society.

People become judgmental and comment about each other, giving their own ‘verdicts’ in extreme manner. One finds too much extremism in their toxic comments. In Pakistan, the issue of blasphemy is also handled in a questionable manner and people often take law in their own hands, going to the extreme of even killing the accused and disrespecting their bodies.

All these events show that such people can be used by their leaders only for political gains or self-interests, not for the cause of the religion.

Ironically, supporting Islam in this form has damaged our reputation in the comity of nations. We failed to handle extremist elements in the country in time. The damage Pakistan suffered is beyond description.

It is the folly of the people who blindly support each and every call for violence in the name of religion.

Using state machinery to change the mindset of such people would be of no use without the support of scholars and clergy. Unfortunately, people usually use that ‘support’ too for their personal likes and dislikes or for political gains only. Instead of controlling the instigating elements, they are given further popularity among people, and such behaviour can never be in the interest of Pakistan.

Criticising the judicial decision is itself a terrible idea as it shows that national institutions have lost credibility among the masses. Those who are promoting such an approach for personal or political gains are actually damaging the cause of Islam instead of building trust in institutions.

We need coordination and reforms without any prejudice. Preference and priority should be given to unity of the nation to perform better in terms of serving the religion and the country.

Creating awareness and earning the trust of the people on matters pertaining to religion is critical as extreme behaviour will make life miserable in Pakistan.

Bacha Hussani
Lahore

Published in Dawn, January 28th, 2022

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