Posts tagged ‘Karachi’

July 15, 2012

Ali Dayan Hasan (HRW Pakistan) recants statement against ISI

by ravezjunejo

Ali Dayan Hasan at IPSMM2012

The newly appointed Director General of the Inter-Services Intelligence may have attained an understated and unsung victory for his intelligence agency considering the recent and highly surprising statement by Human Rights Watch‘s Pakistan head Ali Dayan Hasan that the ISI may not be involved in the Saleem Shahzad murder AT ALL!

Mr Hasan made this statement at the recently concluded India-Pakistan Social Media Mela held at a local hotel in Karachi.  He was invited as a speaker for the session titled ‘Negotiating complexity: human rights and social media.’

Apart from his condemnation of ‘trolls’ (read his notoriously egotistical irritation on being questioned by critics in general and Twitter activist @Laibaah1 Marri in particular) on social media, Mr Hasan said “My position and HRW position is clear. We never say that he was killed by the ISI. Who killed him has to be determined by an independent probe.” Could we be correct in considering this latest statement by Mr Hasan a recanting of the previous allegations that HRW has made, all but implicating the ISI in carrying out the Saleem Shahzad murder?

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July 12, 2012

Shamshad Junejo (1927-2012) – The Story of My Grandfather

by ravezjunejo

At London Bridge; July 1998.

Adapted from:  http://accordingtoraj.blogspot.com/2012/07/shamshad-junejo-1927-2012-story-of-my.html

My maternal grandfather (referred to as ‘Nana’ in South Asian languages) Shamshad Ahmed Junejo, Advocate, Sindh High Court, passed away on March 26 this year. Nana was survived by his three sons and two daughters, the youngest of whom is my mother. Both his wives died when he was still alive.

Since a very young age, I had learned that my Nana had lived a very interesting life. A member of a Sindhi freedom fighter’s organisation in his school days, he went on to become a successful lawyer and a local leader of the PPP at the invitation of its founding Chairperson himself, and many more interesting people in between! I shall now put down here all that I can remember about my Nana and his life that I learnt from him.

These rememberances have been reproduced chronologically.

 

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March 26, 2012

Let’s congratulate Zardari and Altaf on target killing of Shia Muslims in Sindh’s jails

by admin

New trend: Slaughter of arrested Shia Muslims in Pakistan jails by ASWJ-SSP terrorists under the patronage of police, judiciary and ISI.

Fist, Qalander Bux (who was accused of killing of Mullah Ali Sher Haideri, an

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March 24, 2012

We condemn murder of Shia lawyers Salahuddin Jafri and Ali Raza Jafri in Karachi

by admin

Sindh Bar Council has announced to observe strike against the killing of two lawyers in Karachi. SCB

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March 21, 2012

MQM goons in Karachi harassing Shia activists

by admin

MQM goons in Karachi have allied with anti-Shia terroirst organization Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan (SSP, new name Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamat ASWJ) and are currently trying to obstruct Shia Muslims rally (Quran-o-AhleBayt Conference, 25 March 2012, Nishtar Park) against Shia genocide in

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February 22, 2012

SSP-LeJ-ASWJ militants insult Jinnah’s grave

by admin

Anti-Shrine, anti-Barelvi and anti-Shia SSP-LeJ-ASWJ terrorists at the mausoleum of the Founder of Pakistan (Mazar-e-Quaid) Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah (who was a Shia himself)!

Apparently the SSP-LeJ-ASWJ militants harassed the Pakistan Army guards at the

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February 18, 2012

Difa-e-Shia Conference warns Pakistan govt and military to reign in banned sectarian militants

by admin

Related post: A comment on Difa-e-Shia Conference – by Allama Arif Najafi

A very large number of Shia Muslims (estimated number: 200,000) today (19 Feb 2012) participated in the Difa-e-Shia Conference (DSC) (or Difa-e-Tashayyo Conference) in Karachi to protest against the ongoing target killing of Shia Muslims in various provinces and areas of Pakistan by banned Jihadi-sectarian groups, namely: Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan SSP camouflaged as Ahl-e-Sunnat-Wal-Jamaat ASWJ, and their allies namely Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD), Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) and Taliban.

The speakers and participants at the conference warned that Pakistan army’s intelligence

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February 18, 2012

Dr Jaffer Mohsin Rizvi, Shia doctor in Karachi, becomes new target of sectarian violence – by Hassan Naqvi

by admin

Related posts: Dr. Jafar Mohsin, yet another Shia doctor, target killed in Karachi

Shia killing: If we tolerate this, our children will be next – by Absar Ul Hasan

Dr Jaffer Mohsin Rizvi, a doctor by profession and a Shia by faith, became a victim of the ongoing wave of ethnic and sectarian violence in Karachi last month.

He was brutally killed in front of his house (A-614, block 12, FB Area) at 9:30am on January 28, by two unidentified man who were on a motorbike and were wearing Burqas. They asked him about an address when he was reading a newspaper. He received two bullets. Nobody came to his help for the next twenty minutes.

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January 30, 2012

Another Taseer target killed in Karachi

by admin

Another Taseer was target killed in Karachi today, 30 January 2012.

Taseer Abbas Zaidi, 25, was target killed in Incholi Society (Federal B Area) by the Jihadi-sectarian militants of ASWJ-SSP who are sponsored by Pakistan army.

While millions of Pakistanis mourned the tragic murder of Governor Punjab Salmaan Taseer by a brainwashed tool of the Deep State, who will mourn the tragic murder of an innocent Shia youth?

What was Taseer Zaidi’s only crime? He belonged to Shia sect of Islam.

Ever since the ISI-sponsored Difa-e-Pakistan Council has

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January 28, 2012

Dr. Jafar Mohsin, yet another Shia doctor, target killed in Karachi

by admin

United against Kafir Shias: Two pro-Sipah-e-Sahaba scholars with General Kayani


Source: Articles on killing of Shia doctors in Pakistan

Related posts:
Dr Jaffer Mohsin Rizvi, Shia doctor in Karachi, becomes new target of sectarian violence – by Hassan Naqvi

Shia killing: If we tolerate this, our children will be next – by Absar Ul Hasan

کالعدم ملک دشمن جماعت سپاہ صحابہ کے فرقہ پرست دہشتگردوں کی فائرنگ کے نتیجے میں ڈاکٹر جعفر محسن شہید ہوگئے۔

ساٹھ سالہ ڈاکٹر محسن کوکراچی میں انکے گھر کے باہر صبح ۱۰ بجے کے قریب سر پر گولی مار کر شہید کر دیا گیا ۔ شہید گلبرگ میں واقع اپنے گھر کے باہر موجود تھے کہ موٹر سائیکل پر سوار

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January 26, 2012

Funerals of 6 Shia professionals killed in Karachi and Quetta (26 Jan 2012)

by admin

Karachi

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January 21, 2012

Who cares for a slaughtered Shia teenager?

by admin

Ehtesham's murder was censored and misrepresented in Pakistani media.

Sipah-e-Sahaaba terrorists slaughter a 16-year old Shia boy in Karachi

On Thursday 19 January 2012, sectarian terrorists of the Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan (aka Lashkar-e-Jhangvi LeJ camouflaged as Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat ASWJ) invaded the house of a Shia Muslim in the area of New Karachi and slaughterd an innocent boy named Ehtisham Israr. This barbaric incident was completely ignored or misrepresented in Pakistan’s mainstream media.

According to various reports published on Shia alternative media, ISI-backed Jihadi-sectarian militants

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January 1, 2012

Askari Raza’s murder: Cafe Jhangvi makes fun of Shia protesters in Karachi

by admin

Askari Raza, secretary general of Pasban-e-Jafaria, was killed by ISI-backed LeJ terrorists on 31 Dec 2011

Related posts:

Cafe Pyala or Cafe Jhangvi? On Pakistani urban liberals’ sectarian rants

Cafe Pyala Exposed

The demonstrators, 15,000 in number marched around 15 kilometres from Ancholi to the Governor House, to mourn the murder of Askari Raza who was killed Saturday night in Gulshan-e-Iqbal when two armed men opened fire at him. During the 10-hour long sit-in outside the Governor House in Karachi, a six member

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October 12, 2011

No justice for Shia Muslims in Supreme Court’s Karachi verdict — by Abbas Zaidi

by admin


Supreme Court’s Karachi verdict —Abbas Zaidi

Justice should be available to all whether they are Shia, Sunni, or others. You cannot hope for peace while you do not even make a feeble reference to murderers, assassins, and criminals of the highest order

No individual, party, or group (excepting Jamaat-e-Islami) has tried to read deeper into the Supreme Court’s verdict on Karachi’s law and order problem. It seems politically correct to shower praise on the verdict and express the desire to

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January 29, 2011

26 target killers shook Karachi: Pulse Exclusive Report

by admin

As, once the city of lights, Karachi continues to bleed, a joint interrogation team (JIT) set up by the federal and Sindh governments to interrogate the accused arrested on the charge of being involved in targeted killings in Karachi, has

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January 24, 2011

Eerie silence on the 26 target killers

by admin

Sindh Minister, Dr. Zulfiqar Mirza in a fiery and emotional outburst on 13th December, 2010 at the Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry had indicated who is responsible for target killing in Karachi for the last 1 year or so. He pointed fingers at MQM as the cause of the menace facing Karachi, where extortion and ransom of businesses has reached highest possible levels. He had also mentioned that 26 target killers had been arrested and majority of those arrested belonged to a political party that rules Karachi. Off course he didn’t name the party nor the arrested killers. One can see the video of Dr. Mirza’s emotional

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December 28, 2010

Dawn: A “cracker” of a job confusing the public with euphemisms – by Qudsia Siddiqui

by admin

Related article:

Attack on Shia students in Karachi: An ISI-Sipah-e-Sahaba production

After receiving the news of the blast at Karachi University, I quickly checked the news coverage including the “Breaking News” section of DAWN.

Here is how they reported it:

KARACHI: A blast reported at the University of Karachi on Tuesday was probably caused by a firecracker, police said.

“It was a low intensity blast and was caused most likely by a cracker,” Karachi police chief Fayyaz Leghari told Reuters.

Leghari said three people were wounded in the incident, though a senior university official estimated at least six.

“The blast took place outside the main cafeteria of the university and at least six people were wounded,” said Kaleem Raza Khan, registrar of the University of Karachi.

This is the first such incident at an educational institution in Karachi, though the campus often sees regular, violent clashes between rival student groups.

Leghari said Tuesday’s incident may be related to these rivalries but added police were investigating.

Last year, two suicide bomb blasts at the International Islamic University in Islamabad killed six people, including the bombers, and wounded at least 20.”(Source)


Reading this report, one would get the impression that this is simply a fire cracker accident that injured six university students. I wonder, was this some festival that they were celebrating; a belated Christmas, Jinnah day or some such sort.  Then there is a vague description of “violent clashes” between “rival student groups”

Who are these “student groups” ? Are they the dissident wings of the Bader Meinhoff or the Red Army Brigades?? “I love Miandad” vs “I worship Imran and His Holiness Chaudhary Iftikhar”.  How about MQM vs every other ethnicity of Pakistan!

The conclusion is even more interesting where a reference is made to two suicide bomb blasts at the “International Islamic University” thereby creating a causal link between that event and today’s.  Now I get it; it must be that damned “foreign hand”; that dark consortium of Jews, Hindus and Blackwater/Xe blonds, as we all know muslims can never do this and Islam had been targeted in the university blasts in Islamabad!!

Nope, as always, no details are provided. After all, that would be completely contrary to DAWN’s style of reporting; you know fudging and obfuscating facts, falsely linking two events and dishonestly presenting the sheer terror tactics of IJT and Sipah Sahaba as an equal force to its various victims.

There is NO reference to the facts that this was no fire cracker but an elaborate remote control bomb with bearings that was used to target Shias students. Ofcourse, the 20 that were injured was casually reduced to 3 and no mention was made of the fact that 2 are in serious condition.  Such insensitivity has become the norm for much of the media in reporting attacks on Shias and other minority groups and DAWN is hardly the exception.  On the contrary, its disgusting bias just shines through…

The more important context to this would have been the press conference by Shia cleric and activist outside the Press Club just days ago of the abduction of Shia youth by the ISI! Or the threatening SMSs that were sent to scores of Shias since the commencement of Muhurrum in early December.  No, such facts would hurt the reputation of DAWN as an establishment rag whose insensitivity for minorities is directly proportional to its fawning over the Judiciary and its dubious cause.

The irony of highlighting Jinnah, the SHIA founder of Pakistan, as the founder of DAWN escapes its ownership who themselves are allegedly Shia. Ingratiating themselves with the establishment is probably more lucrative for DAWN than honest journalism and caring for the plight of minorities.

Carry on DAWN, no one can do euphemisms better than you.  In doing so, you churn out the best de-contextualized reports that ensure that the establishment and its Islamofascist proxies will never be held to account for the crimes against the Pakistani people!

December 28, 2010

Attack on Shia students in Karachi: An ISI-Sipah-e-Sahaba production

by admin

Photo Source: Samaa TV

Related article:

Dawn: A “cracker” of a job confusing the public with euphemisms – by Qudsia Siddiqui

A bomb blast reported at the University of Karachi today injuring at least 15 students. The blast took place outside the main cafeteria of the university when Shia students were offering the mid-day prayers.

According to SSP Naeem Sheikh it was a parcel bomb. Heavy contingents of police and rangers with rescue teams rushed to the scene and started to move the injured to the hospitals. The initial reports describe that the bomb was hidden in a small parcel and it blasted during the Zohar Prayer at a place between the mosque and cafeteria near Arts and Economics Lobby. (Source)

Six of the injured were shifted to Patel Hospital, 2 are reportedly in serious condition. (Source)

This is the first such incident at an educational institution in Karachi, though the campus often sees regular, violent clashes between rival student groups.

ے ۔کراچی کے علاقے گلشن اقبال میں واقع شہر کے اہم تدریسی سینٹر جامعہ کراچی میں دوپہر ایک بجے کیفے ٹیریا کے قریب نماز کیلئے قائم جگہ پر ایک درخت کے ساتھ دھماکا ہوا جس سے5 افراد زخمی ہوگئے،جنہیں ابتدائی طبی امداد کیلئے پٹیل اسپتال منتقل کر دیا گیا۔ دھماکے سے کراچی یونیوسٹی میں بھگدڑ مچ گئی اور طلبہ و طالبات میں خوف و ہراس پھیل گیا۔ سی سی پی او کراچی فیاض لغاری کے مطابق ہلکی نوعیت کا دھماکہ کریکر کا تھا جو ایک مذہبی طلبہ تنظیم کی نماز کی جگہ کے قریب درخت کے ساتھ ہوا۔ دھماکے سے قریبی بلاکس کے شیشے ٹوٹ گئے۔کراچی یونیورسٹی کے حفاظتی انتظامات پاکستان رینجرز اور جامعہ کی اپنی سکیورٹی کے حوالے ہیں۔ہلکے دھماکے کے بعد کسی اور دھماکے کے خدشے کے پیش نظر یونیورسٹی کو خالی کرا لیا گیا جبکہ والدین کی بری تعداد بھی طلبہ و طالبات کو لینے کیلئے یونیورسٹی پہنچ گئی۔ گلشن اقبال پولیس کے مطابق واقعہ کی تفتیش شروع کردی گئی ہے۔ دھماکے کے بعد طلبہ مشتعل ہوگئے اور انہوں نے حکومت اور انتظامیہ کے خلاف شدید نعرے بازی کی۔ آخری اطلاعات تک طلبہ یونیورسٹی روڈ کو بلاک کرکے احتجاج کررہے ہیں۔

Source: Jang

Last year, two suicide bomb blasts by extremist Deobandis (Taliban supported by the ISI) at the International Islamic University in Islamabad killed six people, including the bombers, and wounded at least 20.

It may be noted that the military establishment of Pakistan (ISI, MI, Sipah-e-Sahaba, Taliban) have recently started a wave of anti-Shia campaign in Karachi to harass the Muslim minority community.

Apparently, the main aim of Pakistan’s military establishment and its proxies in the media is to “make” public opinion on the North Waziristan operation.

Missing Shias abducted by the state

Recently, at least 10 Shias have been illegally abducted by the ISI and MI in Karachi in the last few days.

“The 10 missing Shias were abducted from different areas of the Karachi city within 10 days by the law enforcement agencies (LEAs),” Maulana Hassan Zafar Naqvi, leader of the MWM told reporters during a press conference at the Karachi Press Club, a Press TV correspondent reported on Tuesday.

Missing persons’ relatives for CJ’s help

By: Danish Rafique | Published: December 25, 2010

KARACHI – Families of 10 missing persons belonging to Shia Community have appealed to the Chief Justice to take action and help recover them from the custody of law enforcement agencies.

As per details, Maulana Mirza Yousuf along with the family members of 10 Shia men who allegedly in the custody of Law enforcement agencies held a press Conference at Karachi press Club on Friday and claimed that after the Ashura of Muhram-ulHarram the law enforcement agencies conducted raids at different Shia localities including Jafar Tyaar, North Karachi, Federal B area Cant Station and Orangi Town and apprehended several people without any charge. During the press conference, the families also carrying pictures of the missing people and raised slogans against the authorities as well as law enforcement agencies.

Mirza Yusuf in his addressed informed that that on the other side, the doctors, engineers and other intellectual of the community are being target in ongoing sectarian killing and on the other side law enforcement agencies also arresting our people without any ground. He further said that the authorities were hesitant to take stern action against the culprits of Ashura and Chehlum blasts and those who were behind the killing of Shia people while they arrested the people without any reason from their home and search warrant. He claimed that law enforcement agencies also threatened to kill the arrested men in vivid encounter if they raise their voices again their arrest. He said “Our 10 people were arrested by different raid including Husnain Abbas, resident of Orangi town, two brothers Tanveer Abbas and Mazher Abbas, residents of Sector 10 North Karachi, Pervez Zaidi, resident of Orangi town no 10, Sikander and Jhangir, resident of New Karachi 11-D. They were arrested from Cantt station, Abrar and Ali Mehdi, resident of Jaffer Tayyer,they were arrested when they returning from imam Bargah, Rafat Abbas alias Mesum and Komail, both were the resident of FB Area.” Later, the family members also appealed to Chief Justice of Pakistan, President Asif Ali Zardari, PM Yusuf Raza Gilani and Interior minister of Sindh to recover the missing men.

Source: The Nation

In video: Blast at Karachi University

…….

December 14, 2010

Pakistan, not a lost case: An example of sectarian harmony and tolerance – by Amna Imam

by admin

The following article suggests that religious fanatics (belonging to Deobandi, Ahl-e-Hadith, Shia and Barelvi sects) are a tiny minority in Pakistan. The dominant majority of Muslims and non-Muslims of Pakistan are a peace loving, tolerant nation. Unfortunately, our enemies within (the ISI) and without (the CIA) have exploited the religious and sectarian differences within Pakistani society to promote their specific strategic agendas, e.g., recruitment of extremist Deobandis and Wahhabis as cheap mercenaries in the cross-border terrorism (wrongly labelled as jihad) in Afghanistan and Kashmir. In the following personal account by an ex-bureaucrat, Professor Amna Imam states that “when people talk about weak democracy in Pakistan, when Pakistanis discuss the desirability of a military government, when people think that democracy is unsustainable in Pakistan, when the media reports of gross violence and inequalities in the Pakistani society, I take solace in my first hand knowledge of the real Pakistan.”

Pakistan, not a lost case
Source

It was an early morning, in the holy month of Moharram in the year 2000; I was going through the daily police reports in my office in Karachi, relieved that nothing out of the ordinary was reported, when something caught my eye.

There was a report about an incident at a small Imam Bargah (Shia mosque), in a poor community, located in the treacherous hills of North Nazimabad, separating the Urdu speaking Mohajir community from the Pashto speaking Pakhtoons – the two ethnic rival communities of Karachi.

However, the incident was not ethnic in nature it was sectarian. A few days ago, a group of armed men from the Sunni extremist organization Sipah-e-Sahaba had visited the small Shiamosque, and had threatened the Shia Imam of an attack on his mosque if he commemorated the martyrdom of Imam Hussain in Shia tradition on the 10th of Moharram.

Hussain was the grandson of Prophet Mohammad (peace be upon him). Both Shias and Sunnis commemorate the Shahadat (martyrdom) of Imam Hussain on the 10th of Islamic holy month of Moharram.

However, Sunnis do it in a quiet fashion, reading Quran, fasting, and giving in charity. Shias, on the other hand, in addition to doing all that Sunnis do, hold elaborate meetings in their Imam Bargahs (Shia mosques), wear black, weep, read poetry and beat on their bodies – all the things that Sunnis consider as Bida’ats (Un-Islamic).

Reading the police report, I was at my wits end. Karachi, because of its sheer magnitude and economic significance, was always sitting on social land mines. Any violent incident had, and has, the potential to put the city into a state of turmoil, and by consequence the entire country.

Though, I had force from five police stations, I also had the headquarters of Sipah-e-Shaba (an extremist Sunni organization) in my jurisdiction, the biggest Shia mosque in the Karachi, and a high concentration of Pakhtoons living next door to Mohajirs in my sub-division.

It was a delicate social ecosystem composed of tightly knotted ethnic and sectarian intricacies.

My police force was not enough to take care of all these locations.

I could not be present at the small Shia mosque on the 10th of Moharram, 2000; I was needed at the biggest Shia mosque in my sub-division. I had learned from experience that the police force would run away for its safety, as soon as the Sub-Divisional Magistrate leaves.

I could not leave the biggest Shia congregation in such a precarious condition during their Moharram 10th events. Simultaneously, however small the other Shia mosque was, it was my responsibility to provide security to it on the same day, and at the same time, as the big Shiamosque.

If, God forbid, something had happened to the small Imam Bargah, the big Shia mosque wouldn’t have been safe from attacks and retaliation – and that would have meant that the entire city of Karachi and perhaps the country would have been thrown into flames (literally).

As aware as I was of the gravity of the situation, I could think of nothing, in terms of strategic deployment, that could have saved the day. I was tired from many sleepless nights, busy making security arrangements for the night of the 10th of Moharram, and couldn’t think clearly.

What do I do?

As I was busy thinking about the situation that had made its way to my doorstep, my secretary informed me that a community organizer wishes to see me. I let him in. He mentioned the threat to the small Shia mosque. He suggested that prior to deciding my strategy I should talk to the community members, both Shias and Sunnis. That was the first sane thought that had crossed my office that morning.

I thanked him and asked my secretary to arrange for the meeting of the elders of the community in my office later that day. I asked him to ensure that the Imam of the small Shia mosque also attended. He made the phone calls, and I was told that they will be at my office at 4 pm later that day. I had little hope, but there was nothing else that I could do.

They arrived promptly at 4 pm. The elders were all conservative Sunnis the only Shia present in the meeting was the Imam of the small Shia mosque. I informed them of the security situation and my limitations.

I asked them to advise me on how to proceed with it. The easiest option at that time seemed to be to cancel the permit for Shia commemoration for Moharram 10th of that mosque to avoid violence, but I was open to suggestions.

They all listened very patiently. Then, the oldest person in the group, who was a Sunni, spoke up on behalf of all. He said, “Ma’am, we and the Shia Imam are neighbors and friends. We have lived together for decades. We have attended each other’s weddings and funerals; we have been together in child births and in sickness. We have always taken care of each other. Although we are not Shias, the Shia Imam and his family are our family, his daughter is my daughter is his son is my son, and his congregation is my congregation.

We will not let anything happen to him, his family, or his mosque.” He paused to take a breath, and then continued, “He and his congregation have the right to practice their religion as they deem fit.

Although we do not agree with him and other Shias in how they commemorate Moharram, nevertheless, we will defend their right to practice their religion to our last breath.” You could have knocked me down with afeather at that moment!

I was elated; I had never imagined a poorly educated, low income Pakistani male, who belonged to a generation that existed eons ago, would give me a lecture on how to balance concerns of security with religious freedom!

That was one of the proudest moments of my life. However, I still did not have the solution to the problem. The elder continued in the same tone, “Ma’am, we have therefore, decided that all of us, the Sunni families, will attend the events of 10th Moharram, at the Shia mosque.

The Sipah-e-Sahaba militants have no political incentive to attack and kill us Sunnis, and hence if we are at the Shia mosque, they would not attack the Shia mosque either. This way, the plan to hold events in the Shia mosque will not be disturbed and the security will not be compromised. We will not need your force, but we invite you to come join us for the events at the Shia mosque on the 10th of Moharram.”

I was full of admiration for the simple and elegant solution, and I was speechless at the grassroots wisdom, tolerance, acceptance, empathy and strength of community. I had just witnessed a historic event – I was honored, thankful and graciously humbled.

That was our plan. We discussed the details, and carried it out to the “t”. It went well. Not a drop of blood was shed in North Nazimabad sub-division during the Moharram in year 2000.

Years passed by, some harshly, some softly, but I could never forget the simple compassion of that local Pakistani community.

Today, when people talk about weak democracy in Pakistan, when Pakistanis discuss the desirability of a military government, when people think that democracy is unsustainable in Pakistan, when the media reports of gross violence and inequalities in the Pakistani society, I take solace in my first hand knowledge of the real Pakistan.

I take solace in the inherent wisdom of the simple people, in their simple homes, eating their simple bread, talking to each other under the Neem trees in hot afternoons, and under the stars in cool evenings.

Their wisdom is gained from a culture that spans thousands of years, the wisdom that would make any post-modernist proud, the wisdom and humanity and voice and action and autonomy that are the hallmarks of Pakistani society.

I take solace in the knowledge, that democracy is inherently wise, humane, Islamic, universal, and tolerant and hence inherently Pakistani.

AMNA IMAM • ASSISTANT PROFESSOR, DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION, SUNY COLLEGE AT BROCKPORT