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ہفتہ، 13 اکتوبر، 2012

Malala Yousufzai: icon of light against ignorance

The Malala Incident indicates that Taliban extermism is the biggest threat to our existence. Taliban Terrosists want to impose their will be every means. There is need of unity among all segments of society to defeat the inimical forces. The first and foremost ingredient required is complete commitment to vanquish the Taliban terrorists, which has so far been absent.

 The muted response, from the political bigwigs and media pundits, regarding murderous attempt on the life of Malala Yousafzai, the progressive face of Pakistan, rings alarm bells for every patriotic Pakistani. Logically the incident should have evoked an aggressive response from all segments of society to demonstrate an unambiguous solidarity with the progressive forces of the country and a resolve to crush the bigotry and savagery of the Tehrike Taliban Pakistan (TTP) for good.
Instead the claimants of patriotism like the vanguards of PML (N) of Nawaz Shrif and PTI of the big Khan have chosen to look the other way. I don’t grudge the attitude of the religious parties because they don’t make bones about not being the committed allies of the TTP but the people professing democratic ideals and rule of law should be ashamed at their attitude of looking the other way at such an important juncture that demands their solidarity.

When in the course of human events a set of people reach the lowest ebb in their spiritual degeneration, the intangible forces of historical materialism come in to action and a revolutionary leadership emerges to counter the forces of reaction.

Diffusion takes place to transmit social institutions, skills and myths from one culture to another. Unfortunately, at present, there are no indicators of such a transformation on the horizon. But, as PB Shelley said, “If winter comes, can spring be far behind?”

It would be meaningless to give sermons to the responsible quarters on morals and political philosophy because the media is already cluttered with such precepts that fall on deaf ears. What is to be done then? One can only solicit the attention of the enlightened youth of the country to play their role to arrest the progressive slide of degeneration in to the ‘cold, unfathomable, lifeless abyss’.

But where are the mass protests by the civil society that have the routine of engulfing the whole country even on the drop of a hat? Whither the threats of long marches on trivial matters, spitting fire by prayer leaders throughout the country and instigating the masses to destroy everything that com their way? Then the farce of peace march to Waziristan to express solidarity with the Taliban and so on.
Had our society been vibrant and worth some name, it would have avenged the dastardly act of the perpetrators by now but everyone is acquiescing.

Whatever rallies have been organized in different cities to condemn the dastardly attack have come about as a result of the initiative of individual citizens. With the exception of the Peoples party, ANP and MQM no politician from other political parties has condemned the TTP.

The only silver lining comes with the statement of the Chief of Army Staff, General Ashfaq Pervez Kiani, who reiterated army’s resolve to keep vigorously pursuing the war till the end of all terrorism in the country. It is now to be seen if the words of the army chief are translated in to action immediately. An immediate reprisal is the most vital requirement of the time. A belated action will not have the desired effect. I only hope the defense establishment measures up to its claims and stands in solidarity against the forces of reaction and bigotry.

Pakistani political elite is a victim of an entirely erroneous standpoint that their voting strength hinges on their lip service to religion. Despite having observed the electoral rout of the religious political parties, time and again, during our entire democratic exercises, the political leadership voluntarily remains hostage to the faulty idea of religious lip service. Had our politicians devoted the time wasted in religious praises, to socio economic issues, they would be convinced that the people are interested more in their material wellbeing rather than listening to religious sermons and eulogies.

The only time that we had an untainted electoral exercise, recognized free and fair all over the world, in 1970, was based on the slogan of food, clothing and shelter (roti, kapra and makan) during which the people of present Pakistan overwhelmingly voted for the slogan of material well being. And yet we refuse to get a lesson.

How could the Taliban sustain such a long fight if the civil society stood united against the militancy? I perceive the Malala incident to be the watershed from where the real fall of the TTP will start. I visualize the condemnation of attack on Malala’s life will gather momentum and the common man on the street will be forced to think about the absurdity of militancy. An awakening will ensue and people will start calling a spade a spade.

 By A Rashid

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