We are still alive

12695990_10206729873699704_2066619818_nMunir Saami

Pakistan has faced another bloodbath. This time its Christian minority has been targeted, and a suicide bomber, belonging to Taliban, has killed over 75 Pakistanis, and severely injured over 300 people celebrating Easter in a Lahore park. Leaders and people around the world are stunned, and there has been a global outpouring of sympathy for the people of Pakistan.

At the same time a mob of religious extremists is staging a sit in near Pakistan’s parliament demanding that Mumtaz Qadri, the murderer of Salman Taseer be officially declared a martyr, and the jail where he was incarcerated and hanged, be converted into a national monument in memory of the murderer.

Pakistan has a sad history that is soaked in blood. Those who know this ask, how much more blood does the motherland need. Courageous citizens of Pakistan have been sacrificing their lives since its inception. The story begins with Hasan Nasir killed in a military fort in Lahore, and includes Zulfiqar Bhutto, Benazir Bhutto, two sons of Bhutto family, Shehbaz Bhatti, Salman Taseer, Akbar Bugti, Sabeen Mahmmod, Parveen Rehman, and Murtaza Rizvi.

This history also includes thousands of those political activists who lost their lives and for whom no memorial wall exists, and no list carries the names of hundreds of others who died for the rights of all.

It also includes the activists in Baluchistan and Sindh, for whom the poet wrote, “we were the ones whose faces were blackened”. These activists also include Malala Yusufzai, and thousands of youth in Karachi. These are the ones who went to the doors of the powerful demanding rights for all and never returned home like thousands of Baloch people.

To preserve the integrity of Pakistan, its minorities including Ahmadis, Baloch, Siddhis, Hindus, Shias, Christian, and women, have always made huge sacrifices. It also includes thousands of soldiers of Pakistan’s army that have been used as a fodder of unwise wars, and who have been sacrificed fighting Pakistan’s own citizens. Pakistani poets have celebrated their lives, and citizens of Pakistan also pray for them.

While remembering the sad history of Pakistan we must never forget that millions of its people struggled against usurpation of their rights and succeeded in establishing their own country, Bangla Desh. Many Pakistanis wept at that juncture of history, and ask even today as to how many rains will it take to wash those bloodstains of history.

I am certain if Prophet Mohammed was alive today he would have felt saddened and helpless watching Muslims killing other Muslims, minorities, and human right activists. I am also certain that God would have offered him to put the weight of “Chaghi Mountain” upon the tyrants to crush them.
We have been observing that despite so many years of tyranny, people of Pakistan keep dreaming of a better and prosperous future for their motherland. They do not only dream but carry on their struggle, saying we have oceans of light in our blood and we will keep lighting the path with every breath of our life.

People may ask if it is not insanity, and are the people of Pakistan crazy to keep dying for a country where the tyrants never get tired of sucking their blood. And the response is that it is not insanity but a resolute commitment to eradicate inequity, and defeat the tyranny. Their motto is that they will keep ascending on the crosses, till they defeat every oppressor of their people.

As the world got the news of the latest bloodbath of Pakistani Christians, it also heard a Christian priest declaring that Pakistani Christians will not renounce Pakistan and will never leave the country.

A Pakistani Muslim doctor continued to donate his blood for the injured at every break he got, while helping the victims in the emergency wards. People of Lahore, majority of whom is naturally Muslim lined up to donate blood to save the lives of the victims, majority of whom was Christian. Citizens from as far away as Karachi united to offer blood, water, and support to their Christian compatriots.

These are the citizens, who have time and again defeated and trounced dictatorships, whenever they got their democratic right to vote. They know their oppressors and they know that they themselves are the victims.

While remembering the victims of Easter massacre in Pakistan, we must also remember that Easter is also the symbol of hope, new life, and resurrection. While we celebrate the ascension of an innocent who sacrificed his life, we also always look at Easter as harbinger of a new spring. I am certain that after the Easter tragedy, people of Pakistan are asking each other to remain committed to their country and to carry on the hope for a better future for all.

Pakistanis need not only to keep hoping but to convert the hope into a reality. It can only happen if they always keep in mind the root causes of their misery.

Since the establishment of Pakistan, lengthy military dictatorships have exercised unlimited power over its people. These military dictators, who have considered themselves to be omniscient and omnipotent, have ruled over Pakistan over the majority of its history of governance. It was during these reigns that: Pakistan was splintered; a false Islamic Jihad was carried out in Afghanistan and Taliban and other religious extremists were created and nurtured. These extremist religious groups have been used and continue to be used as strategic assets of Pakistan’s security establishment.
The irony is that despite all the claims of honesty and integrity these military dictators have never accepted their errors and faults. Their manta has always been that it is the politicians of Pakistani who are responsible for Pakistan’s misery and decline. They forget that it has been the military dictators and security establishment, which has always directly and indirectly controlled the fate and resources of Pakistan.
Like all the conscientious citizens of the world, people of Pakistan, at every possible opportunity, have always elected non-religious political parties to govern Pakistan. After every such election there have been moves to overturn the will of the people and to deny the right of democratic governance to those elected by the people. After every such move people come together to take back their right of civil governance saying that, we will keep resisting all undemocratic schemes.

People of Pakistan have always challenged death declaring that they are alive and that they will never accept defeat or a false system of tyranny.

With their resolve to preserve and protect Pakistan, citizens also assert that to have justice and equity in Pakistan, it is absolutely necessary to separate religion from the state, so that people belonging to each and every religion, faith, and sect may work together to build a prosperous Pakistan.
They also demand that the professional and honest officers of Pakistan Army accept the supremacy of civilians and respect the constitution of Pakistan in letter and spirit, and advise their colleagues to always refrain from adventurism and dictatorships. Otherwise, Pakistan will continue to face violence, destruction, and turmoil, and events like the Easter tragedy in Lahore will continue to weaken it.

Citizens of Pakistan wherever they are, wish that Pakistan survives, becomes prosperous, and a successful member of the community of nations where all citizen enjoy equal rights and equity.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *