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The brutality of the horrific suicide attack on a mosque in Peshawar, where over 67 innocent citizens offering Friday prayers is an unforgiveable insane crime. It merits prosecution and exemplary punishment for those involved in executing and planning this inhumane act, but also elimination of those groups and seminaries etc., involved in brainwashing and spreading sectarian hatred.
This country and its citizens are paying the price with their blood, for the misdeeds of a few who sowed seeds of extremism in Jinnah’s Pakistan. The State and its security paraphernalia are aware of the identity of these criminal groups, yet after every such brutality, other than mere rhetoric, there has been no meaningful follow-up that merits enormity of the evil deeds committed.
Quaid warned us of the consequences and importance that Pakistan should be a modern democratic welfare state and not a theocracy. The Two-Nation concept for the creation of Pakistan was to secure the life and honour of all citizens from exploitation and domination by Hindu extremists, who today haunt life of Muslims, Christians, Dalits etc. MAJ was against exploiting religion for political goals.
Unless the State takes serious note of such groups, with zero tolerance for such deeds, such crimes will continue to haunt life of law-abiding citizens of Pakistan. What is needed is the will and urgency shown by the State when it dealt with criminals involved in the failed assassination attempt on Musharraf.
It seems the Colonial Legacy of Divide and Rule, exploiting sectarian and ethnic divides to prevent citizens from uniting on a common platform to achieve their basic fundamental rights, guaranteed by the Constitution, seems to prevail within a few vested interests of this country.
We witnessed this on 12 May 2007 and on numerous other occasions, where major-domos responsible were let off, and only a few minions punished, because they served the political manoeuvres of a powerful few.
MALIK TARIQ ALI
MQM (P) convener Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui’s apology for the loss of 50 lives in the massacres of 12 May 2007 might have been taken with greater seriousness if it had not taken so long, or if it has not come at juncture when MQM(P) had split.
At the time of the massacre, the MQM was still united behind their leader Altaf Hussain, even though at that point he had been in self-exile since 1992. True, Khlaid Maqbool Siddiqui himself and the leadership of the MQM(P) had been in senior leadership positions at the time of the massacres, but his apology, given almost as an aside while addressing the Balochistan High Court Bar Association, fell short of identifying those responsible for the attack.
Mr Siddiqui should not forget that the massacres, mainly activists of different political parties supporting Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, whose visit to Karachi provoked them.
The MQM was trying to support the then President Gen Pervez Musharraf for ethnic reasons, but even before, was enveloped by a miasma of violence that ensured that its support would be accompanied by a liberal use of strong-arm tactics. The party only was brought to heel by the 2017 split within the party, and the induction of the Rangers for a clean-up operation.
Responsibility for the massacres was not assigned, and thus the apology does not really do more than renew old wounds, which have not healed despite the passage of a decade and a half.
It cannot escape notice that the matter was raised in a city which itself has suffered much violence, the latest example being a bomb blast only a couple of days before, and at a time when the MQM(P) is being wooed by both sides for support in the opposition’s no-trust move. There is still a need to investigate the case, if only to bring closure for the families of the victims.
QAZI JAMSHED SIDDIQUI
No loss is greater than losing a precious life which is given for once only, especially when someone is killed mercilessly and there is no compensation of it though financial support could help bereaved family to live for some time in permanent absence of their beloved ones who earned and managed bread and butter for them.
Another tragic incident became part of Pakistani history which claimed almost 57 precious lives and left as many as 197 injured as reported. It is again tragic to see that bomb blast took place in a Masjid. It is widely criticized by common people as well as religious personalities and blamed that federal and provincial governments have failed to stop such attacks on worship places.
Well, undoubtedly it is prime responsibility of the Government to ensure peace in the country but it is pragmatically hard to stop suicide bombers instead some doable measures must be adopted to avoid such attacks in future i.e. to install security walk-through gates on all entrances of worship places which can detect any weapon carrying by anyone.