Fazal’s ham-fisted remarks

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MINISTER for Information and Broadcasting Fawad Chaudhry has strongly condemned a speech by Jamiat-i-Ulema-i-Islam (JUI-F) Maulana Fazlur Rehman, in which he claimed, ‘we are not capable of fighting for 24 hours’.

The minister in a rejoinder on Wednesday termed Maulana’s remarks as tantamount to ‘insulting’ the martyrs, who had sacrificed their lives in war against terrorism and for security of the motherland.

Being an important opposition leader and head of a party, Maulana Fazlur Rehman is supposed to make well-thought out statements but regrettably, on some occasions, he makes careless comments casting aspersions on core issues of national interest.

Defence of the motherland is a sacred mission and responsibility of every citizen and people of Pakistan and their valiant armed forces have demonstrated their resolve and capability to defend the country against all odds irrespective of lack of resources.

Who knows better than a religious scholar like Maulana Fazalur Rehman that wars are not fought and decided merely with weapons but strength of the faith and spirit and resolve of the fighters? Maulana’s remarks that Pakistan had adopted a reconciliation policy towards India because the country could not fight with the enemy due to weak economy and also because ‘we cannot fight for even 24 hours’ can, at best, be described as casual and politically motivated.

Reconciliation in no way means weakness as the country effectively thwarted evil designs of the enemy in the past and has the capability to do so in future as well.

The efforts aimed at normalisation are meant to give space to the two countries to focus their attention on welfare of their masses.

As for resource issues and state of the economy, it is collective responsibility of all segments of the society including political parties and politicians to forge consensus on how to promote and strengthen the economy so that, apart from more developmental allocations, we could divert more resources for defence of the country.