Cutting through the bullshit.

Friday, 20 April 2007

GHQ-backed mullahs

(Daily Times photo)
With temperatures soaring into the low 40s, thousands took to the streets throughout Pakistan yesterday to protest religious extremism. In recent weeks, students from madrassas associated with the Lal Masjid have kidnapped Islamabad prostitutes and threatened to smash video shops and throw acid at immodestly dressed women.

In Lahore, the Daily Timesr eported,

Asma Jehangir, chairwoman of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan, said the military was using mullahs to exploit people in the name of Islam. “We, the people of Pakistan, are not oblivious to this mullah-military alliance,” she said. “There can be no democracy in Pakistan unless GHQ-backed mullahs stop issuing decrees to exploit people in the name of Islam.”

In Islamabad,

“Concerned citizens have been watching with anger and frustration the terrorism being inflicted on them by an extremist fringe within the society,” said one speaker as the protestors gathered at Parade Square.

She was appalled at the state’s “inability or reluctance” to deal with violations of the law committed by Jamia Hafsa and Jamia Fareedia students. “Their attempt to challenge the writ of the state by establishing what in effect is an alternate governing system in the area under their control poses a threat to all law-abiding citizens,” she said.

And, as Dawn reports,

“How dare the mullahs threaten to throw acid on women who don’t cover their faces? How does the government allow anyone to set up a parallel court? Why our rulers feel helpless in acting against these people who kidnap a woman and label her as prostitute?” asked Dr Farzana Bari, a human rights activist.

Hundreds of Christian women from Qayyumabad, filmmakers, social workers and university students rallied against religious extremism outside Quaid-e-Azam’s mazaar in Karachi. “It would be difficult to find a single woman who has not at some point in time faced religious extremism,” said Karachi’s Naib Nazim Nasreen Jalil, who also took part in the protest. Gang-rape survivor Kainat Soomro was also at the rally.

In Peshawar, hundreds of women’s rights campaigners – including some 60 burqa-clad women from the tribal areas – staged a rally near the press club, denouncing threats of suicide bombings by Lal Masjid clerics and baton-wielding madrassa students.

“No religion in the world allows their faithful to use sticks in places of worship,” Tribal Women Welfare Association Chairwoman Dr Begum Jan said.

No comments:

Post a Comment