Protesting everything under sun | By Haya Fatima Sehgal

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Protesting everything under sun


IN all of the protests except for the roaring of age-old extremists trying to bring back their relevance by gathering people outside, nothing was achieved.

The French Envoy to Pakistan should not be expelled, and we must be clear on this stance. This is only the demand of those wanting to create trouble for the country.

The government has rejected the protests rightfully so and encouraged the nation to keep moving about its business.
The media had much fake news circulating on this.

There were fake accounts set up which tried to fuel more division between the west and Pakistan, fanning more flames to the already heated situation.

However, we had been warned about the disinfo which was anticipated, and it was curtailed.

Situations were controlled, but the impact of how rapidly these groups keep reorganizing with incendiary resolve also comes into focus.

Attacks on private property, police and the people were all in the name of religion. All ironically enough against Muslims living in the country about something that was done thousands of miles away.

These protests are a sore point for any International Relations. One almost feels this is where the extremists would want us to be viewed as – in the dark ages.

As Prime Minister Imran Khan aptly said the caricatures of the Holy Prophet (PBUH) will cause 1.3 bn Muslims across the world grievance.

However, in no way do the people or the government stand with those who are creating chaos on ground in Pakistan on their own people.

The government has been able to negotiate and ease down things with strategic steps implemented as each stage was contained and negotiations have been successful so far.

This much is true that the representation of the Holy Prophet (PBUH) is not allowed in the religion.

And mockery is completely out of the question. All the prophets are respected and regarded with dignity by Muslims.

Only few would know not to respond to better termed as high school provocation. The educated would realize to turn away and ignore the situation. However, it is because of this provocation the general masses keep rising up.

So how does one stop a handful of enraged extremists from taking these multitudes alongside them into further decline? Pakistan needs to squelch this with a clear strategy. The PM has come on global platforms several times denouncing the caricatures.

Addressing the nation, he said he was determined to pursue the matter again on western channels.

He has asked for people to refrain from violence, explaining in the simplest terms that we could not be cut off from the world. Pakistan must approach this diplomatically.

The PM expressed if this was hurtful to Pakistanis it was equally so to the rest of the Muslim across the world, but they had not created havoc in their own respective countries.

He also recognized the valiant duty of the 800 policemen injured during the protests. The government stance is clear.

It will not give in to any form of extremism. Pakistan cannot be held hostage by every religious faction uprising for every incident overseas.

Without constructive conversation and exercising patience, Pakistan will fail as a country.

However there remains the fear of a backlash as always by certain groups. They rule by fear and threats.

The frequent mustering of the religious factions will always raise serious questions about Pakistan.

Rallies and anti-western protests are becoming their only power play dragging everybody down with them. This must be focused upon as a serious situation as it would most likely rise again.

A question posed was, if there was a protest against everything under the sun, against every people, at every incident that occurs across the world, who would be left?

—The writer, based in Islamabad, is known for her articles on cultural impact.

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