Wednesday, March 31, 2010

The limits of freedom and faith

---The Economist, UK
Mar 31st 2010 | From The Economist print edition
Religion and human rights
The limits of freedom and faith
Opponents of a bid by Muslim states to “protect religion” claim a small success

IT DOES not happen often: Christian lobbyists, the sort who favour prayer in American classrooms and crucifixes in Italian ones, lining up on the same side as secularists who battle to curb religion’s role in the public square. But in both those camps there has been some quiet satisfaction after a recent vote at the United Nations. Not over the outcome, but over the slim margin of defeat.

On March 25th the Human Rights Council (HRC), a Geneva-based UN agency which often exasperates its Western members, voted by 20 votes to 17, with eight abstentions, for a text that lists the “defamation of religion” as an infringement of liberty. Nothing amazing there: the Organisation of the Islamic Conference (OIC), which groups 56 mainly Muslim states (plus Palestine), has been working to push resolutions of that kind through the General Assembly and other UN bodies since 2005. But the margin was the smallest ever, and opponents think there could be a good chance of defeating a “defamation” motion next time one comes around.

The OIC’s idea is to establish the principle that faiths need protection, just as individuals do. It denies any sinister intention. And to some ears, the OIC’s effort sounds like harmless UN-speak, but nothing more. (The United States Commission on International Religious Freedom, a congressionally mandated body, has noted a logical flaw: defamation means harming the reputation of a living person or entity: that implies that one can’t defame an idea or a religious founder who is no longer, at least physically, alive on earth.)

But critics of the OIC campaign, who include atheists, Christians and indeed some Muslims, say the “defamation” idea is worse than hot air: far from protecting human rights, it emboldens countries that use blasphemy laws to criminalise dissent. What encourages these critics is that more countries seem to be coming around to their view. Mexico, Uruguay, Argentina, Zambia and South Korea voted against the latest resolution. Brazil criticised the text but abstained.

Deeper still inside the UN’s bureaucracy, another battle over religion rages—and the stakes could be even higher. An “ad hoc committee” is mulling ways to amend or extend the UN convention on racial discrimination. Certain states want language that would fuse the categories of race and faith; some want a new convention, or a protocol to the existing one.

For secularists (in the broad sense of people, including believers, who oppose the idea of faith having privileged access to power), all this is alarming. Non-binding resolutions against defamation are bad enough; a UN treaty on race-plus-religion would have legal force, at least for its signatories, and give heart to theocrats.

At the HRC’s latest discussion of this effort in March, the Algerian who oversees the project was keen to plough ahead. But countries like Switzerland, Japan, Mexico, Argentina and France retorted that it would be better to enforce the existing UN norms than dream up new ones. Efforts to widen the racism accord will resume, with a new chairman, late this year—but critics are relieved to have stalled it. Still, would-be theocrats may now focus harder on adding to the racism charter, because they face a real risk of being defeated over defamation, in the view of Roy Brown, Geneva spokesman for the International Humanist and Ethical Union.

Meanwhile a Christian-inspired NGO, the European Centre for Law and Justice, has been denouncing the abuse of blasphemy laws in many OIC member states. How fair is their point? It is an easy case to make, for example, over Pakistan.

Some 41 complaints of blasphemy were registered by police in Pakistan last year, says that country’s independent Human Rights Commission. In theory, blasphemy is punishable by death—a penalty that has been handed down but never carried out. Worst-hit by the law are minorities like Christians and Ahmadis, a group whose claim to be Muslim is rejected by the Pakistani state. Although abuse of the law is less rife now than in the 1980s, when an Islamist general tightened up the rules, the law is still invoked in disputes (over property, say) that have nothing to do with faith.

“The most vulnerable people, that is religious minorities, continue to be charged with blasphemy,” said Ali Dayan Hasan, a researcher at Human Rights Watch, a campaign group. “But are people convicted? No. Rarely. It is used as an instrument of political and social coercion.”

When convictions occur, they lead to long jail terms; and pre-trial detention can last for years. Pakistan’s parliament is revising the constitution but it has left intact the religious bits, despite a vow by the ruling party to review the blasphemy laws. (Indonesia too has stepped back from a move to liberalise its blasphemy regime.)

On Pakistani streets, the law has dire effects. In January 2009, in a village in Punjab province, five Ahmadis, a labourer and four children, were charged with blasphemy. They had supposedly written “Prophet Muhammad” on the wall of a mosque toilet. The children were behind bars for nearly six months till the charge was quashed.

And last September a young Pakistani Christian was accused of throwing part of the Koran down a drain. It seems that his real crime, however, was affection for a Muslim woman. A mob torched a church, and many Christians had to flee. He was taken to jail, where he died a few days later. His family alleged torture; the authorities claimed suicide. There was mayhem at the funeral and the country’s Christians (see picture) were appalled. In some places, it is not the “defamation” of faith that threatens rights but measures that supposedly defend it.


Monday, March 29, 2010

Monthly Newsreport - Ahmadiyya persecution in Pakistan - February, 2010

Seven Ahmadis arrested
Another outrage in Azad Kashmir

Goi, Azad Kashmir; February 27, 2010: A group of religious bigots led a procession on 12 Rabi ul Awwal on the occasion of Holy Prophet’s birthday. They availed this blessed occasion to use abusive language against the Ahmadiyya community and pelt an Ahmadiyya mosque in muhalla Narr with stones. They indulged in violence too.

After this incident these hostile elements proceeded to the main Ahmadiyya mosque ‘Baitul Aman’ in Goi. They raised hostile slogans and made provocative speeches. The following day, a procession was led out in the district head quarter of Kotli. The administration registered a case under PPC 295-A, 341/324, 147/148, 149/337A, 296 with FIR No. 79 against seven Ahmadis and arrested them as demanded by the raucous crowd.

The plea for bail of the accused was postponed for some days due to the pressure of the religious extremists.

These Ahmadis are now in prison for nothing more than their faith.

Authorities informed once again on anti-Ahmadiyya hate campaign

Ahmadis have become victims of target-killing all over the country. Authorities have been informed of this several times in the past, but in vain. The death of Mr. Sami Ullah, who was murdered for his faith on February 3, 2010, is the most recent example of this. No arrests have been made yet. Such murders have become routine and the basic cause of these atrocities is the unbridled provocation against the Ahmadiyya community in the public and by the media. The Ahmadiyya central office issued another circular to bring this to the notice of the authorities. Below is a translated copy of this correspondence:

Sadr Anjuman Ahmadiyya Rabwah (Pakistan)
Ph: 047-6212459
Fax 047-6215459
I hope that you are well.
The very delicate matter of target-killing of Ahmadis is put before you, for your consideration.
An Ahmadi Mr. Sami Ullah was shot to death a few days ago on February 3, 2010. Such murders have become all too common. The cause of such incidents lies in the incitement of the public in conferences, through the electronic and print media, the publication of provocative literature and propaganda.
A case of religious provocation occurred recently on Thursday, January 21, 2010 at the Government College University, Faisalabad. A seminar on the ‘Role of women in society’ was held in the Telecommunication Department. After the first round of lectures, the stage secretary moved on to the second part and said, ‘Now we proceed to the second part of this program in which we will unveil a religion which is built on the prickly foundations of false prophethood. It removes the need for Jihad from the hearts of Muslims, shackles them in chains of slavery, and at the same time undertakes alterations to the book of God and the sayings of the Prophet. This world is a house of mischief, and different mischiefs pop up time and again. The greatest of these is the mischief of Qadianiat, the founder of which is Mirza Ghulam Ahamd Qadiani.’ After this, Iram Rehman of the BTE department and Israr Mu‘avia of the Islamiat department were called to speak. Israr Mu‘avia used highly slanderous language against the Ahmadiyya community. He described Ahmadis as the greatest infidels, called it haram (prohibited by Sharia) to socialize with them, to sympathize with them, and referred to as infidels those persons who accept their penance. He said that the government is supporting them, and they deserve to be killed. Highly provocative sectarian literature was also distributed among the audience at the end of the program to agitate them further.
One such conspiracy had borne its bitter fruit earlier at the Faisalabad Medical College. A mulla of the Madina Town mosque came to the hostel’s mosque and made several provocative speeches, and harassed Ahmadi students. It led to violence. Processions were taken out. All 23 Ahmadi students including the 16 living in the hostel were rusticated by the college administration under pressure from the opponents. Ahmadi students faced great difficulty on this account.
Such activities against Ahmadis are the result of prejudiced and anti-social elements. They are playing a pivotal role in the spread of sectarianism. Edicts of putting Ahmadis to death and hostile activities are the main causes of crimes like Ahmadi murders.
The government and authorities have been informed through different means regarding this sensitive issue but no positive response has been forthcoming.
The above-mentioned incident calls for immediate action. Any negligence may cause a great tragedy. Urgent action is needed to protect the sanctity of this educational institution from the hands of extremist elements.
Saleem uddin
Director of Public Affairs
Rabwah (Chenab Nagar) District Jhang

The police at Badin – Serving the Mulla!

Badin (Sindh); February 2, 2010: An incident occurred here that indicates the depths to which the police has stooped to please the mulla. Senior police officials would do well to recover their prestige and professionalism.

The manager of a cigarette company is a Hindu who is a resident of Badin. His driver is an Ahmadi, Mr. Mobashir Ahmad Gondal. Occasionally when the manager visits home, his driver goes to the Ahmadiyya center ‘Baituz Zikr’ to spend the night. On the night of 2 February, Mr. Gondal brought his vehicle to the center, where some people assembled around the vehicle. Gondal gave them publicity posters as gifts. Someone, who was watching, reported to the mullas that someone was distributing Ahmadiyya posters and literature. The mulla phoned the police and the police were prompt in reaching the Ahmadiyya center.

These constables undertook no investigation, hurried to get hold of Mr. Gondal, and drove him to the police station along with his vehicle. Mr. Gondal told them that these were only publicity posters of cigarettes, nothing else. The police searched his vehicle and found nothing. In the meantime mullas also arrived at the police station.

Ahmadi elders came to know of the incident, and they contacted higher police officials on phone. They were told that Mr. Gondal would be released within an hour. However they kept him at the police station overnight. The next day, company officials also came to recover their man. The police conveyed them their helplessness in the face of the mulla. It was a disgraceful admission.

The mulla insisted that the company should give it in writing that Mr. Gondal would not visit Badin again. They wrote that down, and thereafter their man and vehicle were released. If the mulla holds the local police in contempt, the latter can blame only themselves.

Provocation in the name of religion

The Ahmadiyya central office in Rabwah issued a circular for urging the authorities to stop the gatherings and processions led by mullas in Rabwah in which they routinely use abusive language against elders of the Ahmadiyya community and create a law and order problem. The translation of the letter is given below.

Sadr Anjuman Ahmadiyya Rabwah (Pakistan)
Ph: 047-6212459
Fax 047-6215459
I draw your attention to an important and sensitive matter.
A program of processions and conferences was announced on 27 February 2010 regarding 12 Rabi ul Awwal (birthday of the Holy Prophetsa) in Chenab Nagar, Rabwah, according to press reports. The population of Chenab Nagar is 95% Ahmadi. They are denied the right to hold annual conferences, training and educational workshops. Conversely, hostile groups are left unrestricted to take out processions and hold conferences in Rabwah. They come from outside, indulge in provocative actions, use obnoxious language against leaders of the community and disturb the peace of the town.
Processions and conferences have been announced here again on the sacred occasion of 12 Rabi ul Awwal. Official records bear witness that abusive language is used against the Ahmadiyya community instead of portraying the benevolent personality of the Holy Prophetsa. This does great harm to the peaceful atmosphere of the city. Residential streets and main roads are used for these processions. Provocative speeches and gestures are made near Ahmadiyya places of worship. Disrespect is shown to women, and slogans are raised on loudspeakers to instigate sectarian hatred.
Several applications have been made in the past few years to restrict these activities, but unfortunately no positive response has been forthcoming.
I hope you will take appropriate steps to maintain law and order in the city, in view of the present sensitive situation in the country.
This matter deserves your immediate attention.
Saleem uddin
Director of Public Affairs
Rabwah (Chenab Nagar) District Jhang

Regrettably mullas were still allowed to converge on Rabwah. They indulged in hateful activities, and hurt the feelings of local Ahmadis deliberately, under the protection of the police and the administration. Some details of the day’s proceedings are given in the story below.

Report of processions held on 12 Rabi ul Awwal in Rabwah

Rabwah: Authorities took little notice of the letter written to them by the Ahmadiyya central office, and the mullas were given free hand to provoke the Ahmadis of Rabwah and take out a number of processions in the town.

The events scheduled for 12 Rabi ul Awwal began on February 26, 2010 after the Friday prayer. Mulla Ataul Muhaiman Bukhari of Multan held a conference in Kot Wasawa. Five clerics, including Ghulam Fareed Paracha Deputy Secretary JI and mulla Mugaira of Rabwah made anti-Ahmadiyya speeches. The attendance was approximately 350.

The second session started at 9 p.m. Mulla Muhammad Ahmad Ludhianwi arrived in a procession of 6 buses, 40 motorcycles and an open-top vehicle carrying armed men. This mulla is a leader of a banned organization but is free to carry on his mischief. They reached Kot Wasawa through the main roads of Rabwah waving their weapons. The attendance at this session was approximately 1000. Six mullas addressed the audience.

The third session continued till noon the next day. They took out a procession at 3:30 p.m.

On 12 Rabi ul Awwal the first procession was taken out by mulla Allah Yar Arshad at 9:50 a.m. from Masjid Bukhari. It arrived at Aqsa Square via the Bus Stop and Aqsa Road (the main road of Rabwah). Mulla Muhammad Yamin Gohar spoke to the participants. Then the crowd went back to the Bus Stop. They halted in front of the Ewan-e-Mahmood (Ahmadiyya Youth Central Office) and post office and used abusive language against Ahmadis. They demanded a ban on the daily Alfazl. This procession ended at the Bus Stop at 12:20 p.m.

Another procession was launched by Maulvi Shahid, son of Maulvi Mushtaq from nearby Khichian. This procession went to the Bus Stop through Aqsa Square. Approximately 400 people formed this procession. It dispersed at 1:00 p.m. They did not use abusive language.

The third procession was led by the Ahrar from Kot Wasawa. It used the main roads of the city including College Road, Aqsa Road and stopped at Aqsa Square. A speech was made there. In front of the Ewan-e-Mahmood speakers including Ataul Muhaiman Bukhari used foul language against the Ahmadiyya community. This went on till 5:30 p.m. The procession ended at the Bus Stop. There were 3500 – 4000 people in the procession. A group among them threw stones on the gate of the Ahmadiyya graveyard. The police intervened and stopped them. Some mullas also urinated on the graves of Ahmadis in the public cemetery.

The Ahmadiyya community remained alert at all times against any eventuality. All shops and markets remained closed for almost two days. The Ahmadiyya youth acted as models of self-discipline in the face of provocation in their home town.

The mulla at large

Deorhi, Safdar Abad, District Sheikhupura; January 17, 2010: On January 17, 2010 the only Ahmadi family in Deorhi, Safdar Abad was paid an unwelcome visit by a group of religious bigots.

Mullas visited the village on the morning of January 17, 2010. Some of them were armed. On arrival, they announced that all those who loved the Holy Prophet (p.b.u.h.) should assemble in the mosque.

There they started haranguing the villagers. They had brought along some bed-sheets, undergarments etc as displays and claimed that defiling words and blasphemous remarks against the Holy Prophet were written on them. They concluded that only Qadianis could have committed these crimes, as they recite the Kalima only to fool the village folk.

These mullas exhorted the villagers to implement a social boycott of Ahmadis. “Qadianis are confirmed infidels; their murder is perfectly legitimate vide Sharia – how come you tolerate them among yourselves?” asserted the clerics. They indulged in a great deal more, as usual.

They left after sufficiently polluting the social environment and peace of the village.

The unbridled mulla

Shorkot; February 18, 2010: An Ahmadi, Rana Nabi Ahmad Khan faced unwelcome intrusion by mullas. The following is his account of the incident.

I am the local president of the Ahmadiyya community, Kaki Nau (Shorkot). I own a sales agency of fertilizer on Multan Road. A few mullas came to my shop. They talked to my employee and demanded that the Quranic verses and Islamic inscriptions exalting the Almighty Allah be removed from the premises, as they injured their feelings. They came again after a few days and threatened further action. Two mullas named Muhammad Hussain and Dost Muhammad went to the DSP and told him, “He (Khan) poses himself as a Muslim. He has Quranic inscriptions at his shop, erase them otherwise we will remove them forcibly ourselves.” The DSP told the police SHO to look into the complaint. The SHO came to my shop and found nothing objectionable except the Islamic inscriptions exalting the name of God. I also talked to the SHO and briefed him on the situation. He reported back to the DSP.
After a few days some elders of the area approached me and asked me to erase these words from the shop. I told them that it is not possible for me to erase them, ask somebody else to do it, or allow anybody to do that in my presence. A man named Luqman from the village offered to erase them. I reminded him that he had offered eight pilgrimages to Makkah; he should fear God’s displeasure. He said he would have it done by some boys.
My employee came to the shop after the dawn prayers to switch off the lights of the electric board of the shop. He saw that mulla Idrees of Jamia Farooqia along with two children was leaving after erasing the Islamic inscriptions from the main board of my shop.”

Although Mr. Khan and other members of the community are greatly disturbed after this incident, they have been instructed by the community elders to be patient and show restraint.

Muslims used to uphold God’s name; now some go out of their way to erase it.

Hostile activities in district Sheikhupura

Kot Abdul Malik; February, 2010: Hostile activities against the Ahmadiyya community are on the increase all over Pakistan and more so in the Punjab. A series of incidents occurred in Kot Abdul Malik which is not far from Rachna Town where an Ahmadi was murdered last month for his faith.

Mr. Qamar Ansar who lives in Scheme No. 3 reported the following:

I own a CD’s and mobile phones store. Activities against the Ahmadiyya community have been increasing in the area for the last six months, but they have picked up pace recently. There’s a doctor’s clinic near my shop that I occasionally visit. He gave me some hateful pamphlets against our community, and asked me to read them. After some days he called me, but I excused myself. He then distributed such literature, and pasted stickers on shops where we buy groceries from. These stickers urge the boycott of Qadianis, and call it a sin to have business interaction with them. However those shopkeepers continue to sell us goods.
A conference regarding the Seerut-un-Nabisa (Attributes of the Holy Prophetsa) was held near our house, to which Ahmadis were also invited. Slander was used against the Ahmadiyya community and hateful literature was distributed in public. They asked an Ahmadi (whose faith was not known to them), who sells ice cream on trolley, to join their group and distribute hateful literature far and wide, and thereby earn a reward from God. He took the literature but did not distribute it. He told me that they are planning a big conference in opposition to Ahmadiyyat, and are determined to drive Ahmadis out of this area.
My brother Mazhar used to visit a shop. The work-boy there stopped greeting him. My brother’s friend Munawwar called him there, on the pretence of an emergency. He was met there by a group. They carried a few Ahmadiyya publications. They quoted extracts out of context from them and concluded that Ahmadis are non-Muslims. They asked my brother to become a Muslim. Mazhar told them that he will talk to his family and tell them later. Mazhar took leave, while they insisted on another meeting soon.
After a few days we went to see another doctor for medical advice. The first doctor also came over there and asked this doctor to abstain from dealing with Qadianis. He also gave him some anti-Ahmadiyya literature.
Somebody pasted a hateful sticker at the main gate of our house, which we removed later. My younger sister who teaches in a private school was also approached and given an anti-Ahmadiyya book through a female student.
A woman came to the house of another Ahmadi, abused Ahmadiyyat and urged the family to recant and accept Islam.
Such incidents have become more frequent.

Ahmadi principal removed for his faith

The daily Nawa-i-Waqt reported the following on February 13, 2010:

Chiniot (correspondent): The Qadiani principal of TIA (sic) College Chenab Nagar has been replaced with a Muslim principal. According to details a Qadiani principal Ayub Iqbal was appointed to replace Muhammad Jahangir. The religious groups of Chiniot protested strongly against it. The DCO Chiniot Rana Muhammad Tahir Khan explained the situation of religious intolerance to the provincial education department, which changed the Qadiani principal Ayub Iqbal.

This college was originally built by the Ahmadiyya community. It was nationalized in 1972. The government has changed its policy in recent years, and has denationalized most of those institutions and returned them to their owners. However, Ahmadiyya institutions have not been returned. The standard of education in these nationalized schools and colleges has plummeted greatly and caused irreparable damage to the education of Rabwah’s children and youth.

Acquittal of an Ahmadi accused

Rabwah; February 16, 2010: Mr. Sultan Adhmad Dogar, printer of the Ahmadiyya daily Al-Fazal was acquitted by the Civil Judge, Chiniot after three years and three months of baseless persecution. A brief account of his ordeal follows.

This case was registered against Mr. Dogar, Mr. Saifulla, the publisher of the newspaper and others in pursuance of Official letters No. 7576-PA dated October 28, 2006 and 7816-PA dated November 7, 2006. The letters did not specify the text to which the authorities objected. As such the initiator of this spurious case was the state itself and not any mulla. Only two months earlier in a similar case, the authorities had arrested Mr. Dogar. He was re-arrested on registration of this case, but was released subsequently on grant of bail after his arrest.

At the time of arrest Mr. Dogar was 60 years old, suffering from diabetes and took insulin injections every morning and evening. He was not told what wrong he had committed. Mr. Dogar had a large family. He had ten children of which, 6 lived with him and were his dependants. They all shared his suffering on account of these fabricated criminal cases. He suffered prosecution by the state for three long years. He had worked in publishing for 35 years. His persecution by the state was the most unbecoming and in violation of its own policy on freedom of the print media. This discrimination against the Jamaat, is excessive and inexcusable – to put it mildly. This case was initiated during the regime of ‘enlightened moderation’ of General Musharraf.

Ahmadis behind bars
  1. Mr. Muhammad Iqbal was imprisoned for life in a fabricated case of blasphemy. He was arrested in March 2004, and is currently incarcerated in the Central Jail, Faisalabad. An appeal has been filed with the Lahore High Court against the decision of the Sessions Court. It is registered as Criminal Appeal No. 89/2005. He is now in the seventh year of his imprisonment.
  2. Three Ahmadis; Mr. Basharat, Mr. Nasir Ahmad and Mr. Muhammad Idrees along with 7 others of Chak Sikandar were arrested in September 2003 on a false charge of murdering a cleric. The police, after due investigation found no evidence against the accused. Yet they faced a ‘complaint trial’ for a crime they did not commit. Based on the unreliable testimony of the two alleged ‘eye-witnesses’ (who were discredited in court), seven of the accused were acquitted, but on the same evidence these three innocent Ahmadis were sentenced to death. They are being held on death row at a prison in Jehlum, while their appeal lies with the Lahore High Court. They are now in the seventh year of their incarceration. Their appeal to the Lahore High Court is registered as Criminal Appeal No. 616/2005 dated 26 April 2005.
  3. Seven Ahmadis of Goi, Azad Kashmir have been implicated under PPC 295-A, 341/324, 147/148, 149/337A, 296 with FIR No. 79 in a false case. They are Abdul Karim, Munir, Yasin, Muhammad Rafi, Abdul Hayee, Muhammad Nasir and Mubashir Sadiq. They were arrested on February 28, 2010.

From the Press
Qadiani principal of T I College Rabwah transferred and replaced by a Muslim principal
The daily Nawa-i-Waqt; Lahore, February 13, 2010
Government plans changes in blasphemy law
The daily Dawn; Lahore, February 26, 2010
Chenab Nagar: Numerous encroachments on Aqsa Road cause traffic accidents.
The 60-ft road is reduced to 20 feet width. Citizens demand ‘operation’ against encroachments.
The daily Express; Lahore, February 22, 2010
30 killed in Tirah (Jamrud) suicide bombing
110 injured as bomber blows himself up near LI center, mosque in Dars Mela
The Daily Times; Lahore, February 19, 2010
Terror revisits Swat: 7 killed in Mingora
The daily Dawn; Lahore, February 23, 2010
Rs 256 bn loans written off since 1971, SC told (by the State Bank of Pakistan)
The daily Dawn; Lahore, February 3, 2010

Surge in Extremism
For a second consecutive day, members of the National Assembly on Tuesday protested the resurfacing of banned extremist groups in the country. The focus was again on Punjab. The province had given a few concerned MNAs sufficient cause to worry when it was reported that Punjab law minister had found it prudent to curry favour with the leadership of an ostensibly defunct extremist group.
Editorial of the daily Dawn; February 25, 2010
In Pakistan the regime is still where Saudi Arabia was in 2003 and 2004: slowly coming to realise that the extremism it has fostered has now become a threat to its own survival.
The US weekly Newsweek; February 12, 2010
Despite calls for the repeal of these laws from minority groups as well as human rights organizations, recent debates on the blasphemy laws are being directed towards the revision rather than repeal of existing legislation.
Rafia Zakaria in the daily Dawn of February 24, 2010
Secularism vs Islamism
It will not be an easy task to bring about a more open-minded, tolerant attitude. Musharraf’s ‘enlightened moderation’ did not go anywhere because it did not have the support of his power base in the army and he did not have the courage of his convictions.
Iqbal Akhand in the daily Dawn of February 22, 2010
Afghan clue to lost tribes of Israel
Some leading Israeli anthropologists believe that, of all the many groups in the world who claim a connection to the 10 lost tribes (of Israel), the Pashtuns, or Pathans, have the most compelling case.
Rory McCarthy from Israel in the daily Observer, London of 17th January 2010

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Govt urged to work with all parties

---The Daily Star, Bangladesh
Sunday, March 28, 2010 | Front Page
Govt urged to work with all parties
US House of Representatives passes resolution

Unb, Washington

In a resolution passed on Thursday, the US House of Representatives urged the Bangladesh government to work together with all political leaders to continue and deepen reconciliation.

Congressman Joseph Crowley, the founder and co-chair of the Congressional Caucus on Bangladesh, spearheaded passage of the resolution expressing the US House of Representatives’ support for Bangladesh’s return to democracy.

“Bangladesh has become an important partner of the United States. Even as it faces challenges with serious poverty, threats from climate change and extremism, the Bangladeshi people have shown remarkable resilience, creativity and principle,” Crowley said at the US House of Representatives.

Sponsoring the resolution in the House to congratulate Bangladesh on achieving democracy, he said, “This is exactly the kind of country the United States ought to work with and do more to support, not because the situation on the ground is perfect, but because by working together we have clearly created a better path forward.”

“I hope the international community will more quickly wake up to the positive changes Bangladesh has made,” Crowley added.

The resolution was passed by the US House of Representatives by a vote of 380 to 7.

“I rise in strong support of House Resolution 1215, a measure to honour Bangladesh’s return to democracy. I would like to thank Chairman Berman and Ranking Member Ros-Lehtinen for their support of this resolution. I would also like to thank the gentleman from California, Congressman Royce, for leading this effort with me, along with other members of the House Caucus on Bangladesh,” Crowley said.

The resolution also urged the Bangladesh government to ensure the rights of religious and ethnic minorities, including Hindus and the Ahmadiya community.

It said Bangladesh is “making progress” to join the Millennium Challenge Corporation, a US aid programme that has granted billions of dollars to nations deemed as respecting political and economic freedom.

Crowley noted that a year and a half ago, the US Congress passed a resolution out of fear that Bangladesh was “creeping toward authoritarianism” after the military took charge in 2006 and cancelled elections.


Saturday, March 27, 2010

I will not let NU interfered by govt: Said

--- The Jakarta Post, Indonesia
National | Sat, 03/27/2010 10:20 PM
I will not let NU interfered by govt: Said

Bagus BT Saragih, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta

Nahdlatul Ulama chairman elect Said Agil Siradj on Saturday responded his victory by vowing not to let NU be interfered by the government.

“Indeed, the President called me several days before this congress. But it was not even close to be called as an intervention,” he told the press shortly after the voting.

Said also denied he would use his chairmanship as a political vehicle to run for presidential election.

“Any proposal to run for president or vice president candidate will not be interesting for me. I promise. No matter who is asking me [to run for presidential election],“ he said.

Asked about how he would bring NU followers to treat sects like Ahmadiyah, Said said the sect would stay harmful for Islam.

“There’s already been rules about Ahmadiyah, and NU has made its decision that Ahamdiyah is a sect that NU defies,” he said.

Slamet Effendy Yusuf, who lost the two-horse race for Said, meanwhile, said that he was ready to help Said to develop NU. “Pak Said has said he would invite me [to be involved in the organizational committee],“ he said.

Slamet who was a former legislator from the Golkar Party denied that he had gained support from the party. “No. NU is not a place for practical politics,” he said.


‘Infidel’ Not to be Said Lightly, NU Cleric Says

---Jakarta Globe, Indonesia
March 27, 2010
‘Infidel’ Not to be Said Lightly, NU Cleric Says

Senior cleric and deputy chairman of Nahdlatul Ulama’s legal advisory board Masyhuri Na’im said on Friday that Muslims should not use the term kafir, or infidel, lightly.

The nation’s largest Islamic group has discussed the matter at its annual congress in Makassar this week because it had received numerous reports of Muslims labeling those both inside and outside the faith as infidels as a means of attack, he said.

“I have heard that people who do not wear a kopiah [Muslim skull cap] are called infidels. Muslims not growing their beards are called infidels. People are being declared kafirs and then attacked,” Masyhuri said, adding that NU was greatly saddened to hear that members of the Ahmadiyah, a minority Muslim sect, had been assaulted many times and seen their mosques destroyed by those who called them infidels.

“Have you ever seen any NU followers attacking Ahmadiyah followers? No. We would never do that because the Prophet [Muhammad] would never use violence. We talk to people. The Prophet would never physically attack people because they were not Muslims,” Masyhuri said, adding that there were several criteria to be met before someone could be called an infidel.

“God should be considered as the creator of the universe. Only God can punish us. To call someone an infidel who is actually a Muslim over small differences is forbidden by the Prophet. The Prophet has clearly instructed us that whosoever calls a Muslim an infidel, himself is the infidel,” Masyhuri said.

He added that those who were misguided needed to be brought back toward the correct path of Islam.

Copyright 2010 The Jakarta Globe

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Monthly Newsreport - Ahmadiyya Persecution in Pakistan - January, 2010

Retired Ahmadi Professor murdered for his faith in Lahore

Lahore; January 5, 2010: Professor Muhammad Yusuf was killed on January 5, 2010 by two masked gunmen in Lahore. He was 70.

At around 7.30 a.m. Professor Yusuf was tending his son’s grocery shop near his home in Rachna Town when two masked persons drove up to the shop on motorbikes and fired two shots at him. Thereafter they fled the scene.

Upon hearing the gunshots, a son of Professor Yusuf came running to the grocery shop and found his father seriously wounded. Professor Yusuf died on route to the local hospital.

The Ahmadiyya Jamaat has faced a great deal of opposition in the Rachna Town area, and this opposition has markedly increased in recent times. Banners are seen around the area stating that Ahmadis are ‘Wajibul Qatl’ that is they ought to be killed. Further, a number of anti-Ahmadi rallies have taken place in the area inciting others to violently oppose and harass all Ahmadis. One such rally took place a few days earlier. A number of Ahmadis in the area have also faced death threats. Police was made aware of all such incidents yet no action has been forthcoming.

Professor Yusuf was a greatly loved and well-known personality of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat. He is survived by his widow, four sons and a daughter.

The Press Secretary of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat, Abid Khan said:

“The martyrdom of Professor Muhammad Yusuf grieves every single Ahmadi the world over. He was a gentle and loving elderly man. It is a grave reality that no Ahmadi – man, woman or child – is safe in Pakistan. A country founded on principles of tolerance and religious freedom has transformed into a country of hatred, extremism and cruelty of the highest order.

“Last year 11 Ahmadis were killed in Pakistan for no other reason than that they belonged to the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat. This new year of 2010 is not even a week old and already the blood of another Ahmadi has been shed.”

It is of great concern that the deteriorating sectarian situation in Rachna Town was well-known to the Sheikhupura Police and the government of the Punjab. The laissez-faire attitude of law-enforcement agencies allowed the extremists to undertake the murder of the president of the local Ahmadiyya community (of more than one hundred households). It is our considered opinion that a firm and professional handling of the situation, would have prevented this incident.

Events reflect very poorly on the quality of governance, administration and police work in the province. This murder was preventable as the instigators had previously been reported to the police. However, even after the incident the police and the political heavy-weights handled the crime investigation in a non-professional and highly improper manner. This was taken up by the press.

The Daily Times, Lahore reported the incident in the following headlines and excerpts; it would not be difficult to read the truth between the lines:

Ahmadi leader shot dead in Ferozwala
* Victim’s son claims police took no action despite being intimated about threats
Lahore: An Ahmadi leader was gunned down allegedly for seeking police protection on Tuesday. …
The Daily Times; Lahore, January 6, 2010
Alleged murderers claim Ahmadi leader killed by family
* Victim’s son says accused men pressing police to frame charges against family
* PML-N MPA manages to talk protesters out of demonstration against removal of anti-Ahmadiyya sign board

The four men accused of Muhammad Yusuf’s murder in the first information report (FIR) # 14/10 had gone into hiding and are still at large, according to police sources.
Political pressure: Fateh (the victim’s son) stated that the accused were exerting political pressure on the police to implicate his family in the murder. He said his father had no dispute or enmity with anyone, and had been murdered because of his religious beliefs.
The newspaper printed picture of a billboard in the local bazaar, with the following inscription (translation):

… Have no contact whatsoever with the worst of infidels and worst enemies of Islam i.e. Mirzais and Qadianis; and convey the same to your children. People who meet them will find themselves deprived of Mohammadan intercession on the Dooms Day.
The Daily Times; Lahore, January 11, 2010
Protect Ahmadis
THE RECENT INCIDENT OF MURDER OF AN AHMADI LEADER IN Ferozwala, a city of Sheikhupura district situated near Lahore, is a sad reflection of how society chooses to treat a section of the minorities, variously known as Mirzais or Qadianis in Pakistan. What is more disconcerting though is the apathy – rather collusion of the state – which not only allows such incidents to take place under its very nose but also tends to protect the perpetrators.
Instead of arresting the accused and investigating further, it is reported that the police let the four abettors go when they visited the police station with PML N’s member of the Punjab Assembly Pir Ashraf Rasool. Meanwhile, both the police and the nominees in the FIR have been pressurizing the family to withdraw the murder case. Alarmingly, even after the ghastly retribution visited upon Mohammad Yousaf, Khatam-e-Nabuwwat Youth Wing’s signboard on the main roundabout of the town, which urges believers to kill and maim Islam’s enemies and to socially boycott Ahmadis has not been removed. …
The Daily Times; Lahore, January 13, 2010
Ahmadi leader’s murder suspects ‘visit’ police again
None of the accused have moved court for bail despite being named in FIR 8 days ago
Complainant denies SP’s claim that he had asked police not to arrest accused
MPA says four men are innocent and he advised them not to get bail

Influence: However, Fatehul Din, the complainant and son of the murdered Ahmadi leader, told Daily Times the accused had been given undue favour by the police and PML (N) MPA Pir Ashraf Rasool. He said he had never asked the police not to arrest the accused. He said the MPA accompanied the accused to the office of the SP (Superintendent of Police) to influence the police.
The Daily Times; Lahore, January 14, 2010
Ahmadi leader’s family offered to withdraw case: accused
* Claim they want Khatme-Nabuwwat Youth Wing dismantled Family deny allegations, say accused conducting anti-Ahmadi propaganda.
The Daily Times; Lahore, January 22, 2010
Men accused of Ahmadi leader’s murder released
The Daily Times; Lahore, January 30, 2010

It is such attitude of authorities that precipitated the tragedy at Gojra. Some people do not become wise even after an incident.

Another Ahmadi murdered for his faith

Sanghar, Sindh; February 3, 2010: Mr. Sami Ullah was shot dead on the evening of February 3, 2010. He was on his way home after closing his shop in Shehdadpur. When he reached near his house, two unknown motorcyclists stopped him, and fired on his head and fled away. He died at the spot. He was 55.

He was a well-known Ahmadi, and a community worker.

A prominent Ahmadi was murdered in the same district two months earlier. He was murdered the same way as Mr. Sami Ullah. This means that assassins are from the same group that targets selected Ahmadis.
This calls for serious attention from the authorities. Prominent Ahmadis are being targeted in the province of Sindh at regular intervals.

Ahmadiyya mosque handed over to adversaries by executive order

Ahmad Nagar; January 14, 2010: At the orders of the District Co-ordination Officer (DCO) Chiniot, Punjab, an Ahmadiyya mosque in Ahmad Nagar (near Rabwah) was handed over to non-Ahmadis on January 14, 2010 upon the baseless grounds of pre-empting the extreme law and order disturbance.

The mosque had been sealed by the police in 2003 on similar grounds, and Ahmadis have remained deprived of their place of worship ever since. Ahmadis reported the matter to the Chief Justice of the Lahore High Court in August last year. While an action by the honorable court was awaited, the mullas approached the provincial and district administrations, and coerced a decision in their favour that seriously violates the legal and human rights of Ahmadis. It is a deliberate and gross infringement of Ahmadis’ freedom of religion and worship.

This mosque was built by an Ahmadi, Mr. Wali Muhammad, at his own expense and on his personal land, between 1982-1983. The management and upkeep of the mosque were undertaken by the community. Ahmadis routinely allow other Muslims to use their mosques; in fact they allow anyone who worships one God. As such, on occasions, non-Ahmadis also used this mosque for worship.

In 2003, Ahmadis undertook repairs to the building. When the repairs were nearing completion, a cleric, by the name of Ghulam Mustafa who lives in Muslim Colony (Chenab Nagar), approached the police and claimed the mosque on the grounds that it had been used by Muslims. As is the wont of extremist clerics, he threatened violence. The police, under pressure, found it convenient to lock the mosque, with the promise to look into the rival claims.

Ahmadis presented the police with irrefutable evidence and documents of Mr. Wali Muhammad’s ownership of the land and property. The police SHO therefore categorically wrote in his report, on December 18, 2003: “In my opinion it is clear and there is no doubt that this mosque was built 18 or 20 years ago by Wali Muhammad Qadiani on his own land in his personal capacity. Muslims had no claim or role in it.”

Still the authorities did not restore the mosque back to Ahmadis. In June 2007, the District Police Officer asked for a report from the DSP along with documentary evidence. This was provided by the official who concluded: “… As for this mosque/Bait uz Zikr, Ahmad Nagar, it is, according to the evidence, the property of Jamaat Ahmadiyya.”

Despite such conclusive findings, the mosque was not unsealed. In 2009, the extremist religious elements initiated a drive threatening to take over the mosque, by force if necessary. Upon this, Ahmadis complained to the Chief Justice LHC. His decision is awaited.

The mullas however decided not to wait for a judicial verdict. They issued threats to the administration, and have succeeded in obtaining a decision in their favour by unlawful means. It is a victory for blind religious extremism over fair and good governance.

The DCO’s Order and the justification given therein are typical of bureaucratic circumvention. It is reasonable to assume that he had orders from Lahore to act in the mulla’s favour. He did not fail to send a copy of his Order direct to the (PS to) Chief Secretary in the provincial capital. In view of what happened in Gojra last year and to the Ahmadi school children of Layyah, the policy of the Punjab Government’s policy is there for all to see. The chief minister’s statement, after the Gojra tragedy, is, however, worth quoting here: “We do not have the right to rule if we cannot protect and provide justice to minorities”. (The Daily Times, Lahore; August 8, 2009) In view of the DCO’s Order and the chief minister’s statement one is reminded of a statement by Dr Israr Ahmad, a well-known Pakistani cleric: “Pakistanis as a people are the greatest hypocrites in the world.” (The daily Pakistan, Lahore; January 5, 2009)

The DCO quoted the anti-Ahmadiyya constitutional amendment and Ordinance XX to justify his unsupportable action. He has used improperly unjust and unfair laws to allow a gross violation of the fundamental human rights of a marginalized community.

In case the government differs with our above assessment of the DCO’s Order, it should commission an independent inquiry on the issue by an impartial NGO or judicial panel.

According to the daily Khabrain of January 15, 2010, “At this Maulanas Allah Yar Arshad, Muhammad Hussain Chinioti, Ghulam Mustafa, Deputy Amir JI Syed Nurul Hassan Shah, Qari Muhammad Ayub Chinioti and Ilyas Chinioti paid tribute to the DCO Chiniot for his bold action.” According to another press report, a delegation of Ulama later called on the DCO to convey to him their greetings and appreciation ‘for fulfilling his earlier promise’.

This wrong must be put right, otherwise the mulla will push for further victories, as he did in Swat last year.

Three Ahmadis given imprisonment sentence on faith based charge

Chak 21/WB, Vehari; January 28, 2010: Mr. Ijaz Ahmad, Mr. Yasin and Mr. Latif were sentenced to two years’ imprisonment and fined five thousand rupees each, on January 28, 2010 by a magistrate Hidayat Ullah Shah at Vehari, Punjab.

A case was registered against five Ahmadis on February 5, 2005 under anti-Ahmadiyya law PPC 298-C. This happened when Mr. Muhammad Arshad, an Ahmadi religious teacher in Chak 23/WB was being transferred to Chak 549. He loaded all his personal belongings in a trolley on February 20, 2005, and was on his way to his new post. On the way, armed anti-Ahmadi zealots intercepted him, took possession of his belongings, took out his religious books, notes and professional records etc, and later handed all this material to the police. The police, in pursuance of the interceptors’ report, registered a criminal case under the Ahmadi-specific law PPC 298-C against not only the Ahmadi teacher but also four other Ahmadis. The FIR accused Ahmadis of preaching their faith to “poor innocent Muslims (gharib aur sadah loh Mussulman غریب اور سادہ لوح مسلمان) on Hospital Road…, and they fled throwing away their pamphlets and literature, which were presented in evidence by the accusers”. They demanded in the FIR that further anti-Islam and anti-Mussulman literature should be recovered from the accused. This reminds one of the Taliban in Afghanistan in 2001 when they arrested some Australians on the charge of preaching Christianity and of being in possession of Bibles. The police, in any civilized country would have detained such zealots on the charge of armed robbery.

Thereafter a judge refused to release the accused on bail. Eventually bail was granted by a higher court three months later. The prosecution however continued for five years. The state fielded false witnesses and rigged a fabricated and improved story. In the meantime one of the accused Mirza Muhammad Iqbal died. Mr. Arshad was mentioned no more in the challan or trial. The other three Ahmadis were arrested in the court and led to the prison to serve their sentence of imprisonment.

Blatant discrimination

Rabwah; December 2009: Secretary of District Housing Committee Chiniot, a government body, recently advertised in the press and in public that empty plots in Rabwah on the riverside would be sold by auction, but only to those who believe in ‘complete and unconditional end of prophethood’ and who is not a follower of anybody who claimed to be a prophet in any sense of the word or is an Ahmadi/ Qadiani/Mirzai/Lahori. This happened first in year 2005 and now again in 2009/2010.

There is a background to this vulgar exercise of auction. Many years ago, the government, in league with religious thugs, forcibly occupied Ahmadiyya owned residential land on the eastern part of Rabwah, and established a ‘Muslim Colony’ on the usurped land. Ahmadis petitioned the Lahore High Court and the honorable court ordered on 4 March 1976:

Status quo shall be maintained meanwhile, that is to say, the petitioners who claim to be in possession, shall not be dispossessed.

The matter is still pending before the Court and the stay order is still in the field. Therefore any auction of the plots is a clear violation of the order of the Court and amounts to contempt of the Court. So, the Ahmadiyya Office served a legal notice to the Secretary of the Housing Committee to stop the auction in 2005. No one paid heed to it.

It is relevant to mention that despite the Court orders, numerous mullas and their acolytes are in illegal occupation of Ahmadiyya land for years and have established there a mosque, a big seminary, and a so-called Muslim Colony - with government support.

This time again, the Secretary notified that After the final auction of plots in this scheme, no one will be allowed to transfer his plot ever to an Ahmadi/Qadiani/Mirzai/Lahori; violators will lose their plots, the construction material and their deposits to the government. This unworthy announcement was issued by Deputy Director/Secretary District Housing Committee, Chiniot, and he has quoted Order No. 3(1)76-H-M-11 of the Housing Urban Development of the Government of Punjab as authority.

It is interesting and relevant to read the following in the press:

Pakistan facing threat of terrorism and extremism (The Chief Minister Punjab told the outgoing Australian High Commission)
The Frontier Post; May 27, 2009
Pakistan is a society of endless contradictions, says Jemima
The daily Dawn; June 8, 2009

The forbidding action took place in the Punjab. The auction notice, publicized in the press, is placed at Annex.

Harassment of Ahmadis in Multan

Gulgasht Colony, Multan; January 19, 2010: Multan has been a hotbed of anti-Ahmadiyya activities for some time now. Three Ahmadis were murdered there in 2009, two doctors and a successful businessman. Several Ahmadi families relocated to the Gulgasht Colony of the city, but the mulla still pursues them. Ahmadi families are living there in fear and are exposed to harm all the time. Incidents in Multan were mentioned in the monthly report of December 2009.

This month provocative and hateful stickers were pasted on the door of an Ahmadi resident of the colony. These stickers expose the malice of the mullas, and promote hatred. The Ahmadi reported the incident to the police with the request that the culprits be stopped. The print on one of these stickers reads: One who does not strive to safeguard the finality of the prophethood and the honour of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) is at risk on the Dooms Day. This sticker also bears drawing of a dead man’s skull and leg-bones. The other sticker reads: One who has any dealings with Mirzais will be devoid of the intercession of Muhammad (PBUH) on the Dooms Day and will face grievous punishment of disgrace. These stickers bear the address of the publishers as: Khatame Nabuwwat Youth Wing, Ferozwala, Pakistan. Their phone numbers and website address are also given in the bold: 0321-8852745, 0322-4669648 and The authorities remain unmoved.

Ahmadis behind bars

Mr. Muhammad Iqbal was imprisoned for life in a fabricated case of blasphemy. He was arrested in March 2004, and is currently incarcerated in the Central Jail, Faisalabad. An appeal has been filed with the Lahore High Court against the decision of the Sessions Court. It is registered as Criminal Appeal No. 89/2005. He is now in the sixth year of his imprisonment.
Three Ahmadis; Mr. Basharat, Mr. Nasir Ahmad and Mr. Muhammad Idrees along with 7 others of Chak Sikandar were arrested in September 2003 on a false charge of murdering a cleric. The police, after due investigation found no evidence against the accused. Yet they faced a ‘complaint trial’ for a crime they did not commit. Based on the unreliable testimony of the two alleged ‘eye-witnesses’ (who were discredited in court), seven of the accused were acquitted, but on the same evidence these three innocent Ahmadis were sentenced to death. They are being held on death row at a prison in Jehlum, while their appeal lies with the Lahore High Court. They are now in the seventh year of their incarceration. Their appeal to the Lahore High Court is registered as Criminal Appeal No. 616/2005 dated 26 April 2005.
Mr. Ijaz Ahmad and Mr. Yasin were sentenced to two years’ imprisonment and fined five thousand rupees each, on January 28, 2010 by a magistrate Hidayat Ullah Shah at Vehari, Punjab on baseless charge of preaching.

From the Press
Ahmadi leader shot dead in Ferozewala
The Daily Times; Lahore, January 6, 2010
Ahmadi leader’s murder suspects ‘visit’ police again
None of the accused have moved court for bail despite being named in FIR 8 days ago.
Complainant denied SP’s claim that he had asked police not to arrest accused.
MPA says four men are innocent and he advised them not to get bail.
The Daily Times; Lahore, January 14, 2010
Police yet to ‘book’ suspects in custody.
Men not produced in court, no paperwork against them yet.
The Daily Times; Lahore, January 19, 2010
Govt bringing minorities into main stream: Gilani
The daily News; Lahore, January 16, 2010
Congregational Friday prayer was offered in Chenab Nagar to get the mosque released.
The daily Express; Lahore, January 9, 2010
Note: In fact this mosque is in Ahmad Nagar (near Chenab Nagar); it belongs to Ahmadis and has remained sealed by the authorities for years.
Chenab Nagar: A mosque sealed for six years, has been released upon the strong demand of religious communities.
DDOR Tehsil Lalian and his subordinate broke the seal. The scene was worth seeing in the presence of Maulana Ghulam Mustafa, Qari Shabir Ahmad Usmani and other ulama.
The daily Ausaf; January 15, 2010
Majlis Ahrar announce program of rallies against Qadiani machinations
Meeting decides to hold conferences to stop rulers from following pro-American policies.
Drone attacks are the worst terrorism. We shall play our role to safeguard the end of Prophethood. — Syed Ataul Muhaiman Bukhari
The daily Nawa-i-Waqt; Lahore, January 22, 2010
Bangladesh bans religion in politics.
The Daily Times; Lahore, January 5, 2010
Fourth church attacked in Malaysia.
The Daily Times; Lahore, January 10, 2010
Over 12,800 militants caught in 2009
…the overall casualties amount to 12,632 people dead and 12,815 injured. Pakistan Security Report 2009
The daily Dawn; Lahore, January 11, 2010
2009 left a permanent imprint on Pak history.
2300 dead in various incidents including terrorist attacks (sic). 1000 security personnel killed.
40 killed in Lahore including Maulana Naeemi; 495 injured
328 died in Quetta in targeted killings; 332 killed in Karachi
57 women and scores of children among those killed in Peshawar.
The daily Jang; Lahore, January 1, 2010
2600 and 650 terrorist killed in operations Rahe Rast and Rahe Najat respectively
We had to launch a fresh operation against a terrorist organization that fought in the name of Shariah. — Athar Abbas (DG ISPR)
The daily Aman; Lahore, January 1, 2010
New edition Red Book published
Combined bounty of Rs. 65.85 million announced on 119 suspected terrorists.
The Daily Times; Lahore, January 12, 2010
88 die in attack on volley ball crowd (in Lakki Marwat)
The daily Dawn; Lahore, January 2, 2010
31 activists of a banned organization acquitted
The daily Dawn; Lahore, January 27, 2010
5 students injured in ‘IJT attack’ at Hailey College
The Daily Times; Lahore, January 27, 2010

Then (after 2005) we became the victims of political expediency for the perpetuation of General Pervez Musharaf’s rule, i.e. the concessions he made to the religious alliance, the MMA. The MMA had sympathies for the terrorists and consequently the terrorists became very strong in Swat and Fata and set up parallel governments.
The Jamaat-e-Islami, the JUI and some other religious parties have been facilitating these (terrorist) groups. These parties have been sympathetic to terrorist groups and have not come out openly against them. The linkage of drone strikes with suicide bombings and then justifying the brutalities of terrorist groups is inexcusable.
Brig Mahmood Shah (R) former Secretary FATA Secretariat, in The Friday Times, December 18-24, 2009
Yes to church towers, no to minarets
According to Libyan leader Moammar Kadafi “Switzerland has done the so-called Al Qaeda or the terrorists the biggest favour.”
Sergey Balmaso in Provda, quoted in the Nation; January 13, 2010
IJT’s shenanigans
The Islami Jamiat-i-Talaba (IJT) has once against harassed and beaten up innocent students at the Punjab University (PU). The IJT activists (read goons) continued with their traditional terror spree when they assaulted five students and injured them critically. The reason cited for this incident was ideological differences between the IJT and the Insaaf Students Federation (ISF).

The Punjab government must take note of the harassment by ITJ students on campus and take its goons to task. The PU must not lose its glory because of a bunch of fanatics who continue ad nauseam to spread terror in the name of Islam.
The Daily Times; Lahore, January 29, 2010
Eventual ruling on a ruler!
… Third, most critically, the court has relied on vague “Islamic injunctions” and notions of ‘morality’ in the constitution, in particular to Articles 62 and 63 of the constitution inserted by that great Islamist fraudster-gangster General Zia ul Haq. (Emphasis added)
Editorial of The Friday Times; January 22-28, 2010


Public Auction of Rabwah land: ad in The News of December 19, 2009; and its translation in English

Housing and Town Planning Jhang
Public Auction
Everyone is hereby informed vide this advertisement that a grand auction of one-Kanal, 10-Marla and 7-Marla residential plots, and 5-Marla commercial residential plots and one-Marla commercial shops in Low Income Housing Scheme Chiniot, and also one-Kanal and 10-Marla residential plots and 7-Marla commercial/residential plots and one-Marla commercial shops will be held at 11 A.M. according to the following schedule:
Name of Scheme
Date of Auction
Place of Auction
Type of Plot
No. of Plots
Official call per Marla
Surety Deposit
Low Income Housing Scheme, Chiniot
Water Works Chiniot
1-Kanal residential plots
10-Marla residential plots
7-Marla residential plots
5-Marla residential and commercial plots
1-Marla commercial shops
Low income Housing Scheme Chenab Nagar
Water Works Scheme Chenab Nagar
1-Kanal residential plots
10-Marla residential plots
7-Marla residential and commercial
1-Marla commercial shops
Terms and Conditions of auction:The participant will have to submit the advance of surety deposit through a scheduled bank, payable to the Deputy Director/Secretary District Housing Committee Jhang along with an attested copy of his national identity card.
2. The participant with have to be present personally or represented by specially nominated persons.
3. Presiding Officer will have the authority to cancel a bid or bar it.
4. The highest bidder is required to deposit 1/3 amount of the total bid as deposit within 7 days in my office. This 1/3 amount will include the advance paid as surety deposit; otherwise the bid will be considered as cancelled and the advanced deposit will stand forfeited.
5. The bidding will be subject to the approval of the District Housing Committee, Chiniot. Approval/non-approval of the District Housing Committee Chiniot will be posted on the office notice board under my signature. No further intimation will be undertaken to the bidders regarding approval/non-approval. Every bidder is personally responsible to come to my office to find out if his bid has been accepted or not. Subsequent to this approval, the bidder is required to deposit the balance 2/3 of the bid in one installment in the Treasury within 30 days of the date of auction, and also will have to pay any tax imposed by the government, otherwise the sale/allotment of the plot will be deemed cancelled and the deposited 1/3 auction money including the surety deposit will stand forfeited by the government, and no excuse/objection will be entertained.

“The number of plots in above schemes may be cut or increased as per the demands of the situation.”

Special Note

As per Order No. 3(1) 76-II.M.II dated 7.7.1976 of the department of Housing Urban Development and Public Health Engineering, Government of the Punjab, individuals belonging to the Qadiani/Ahmadi/Lahori denomination are not eligible to participate in the auction (of plots) in Area Development Scheme, Muslim Colony, Chenab Nagar. Everyone desirous of participation in the auction in the said scheme will have to present an attested declaration on oath along with his application form that (1) He has complete and unconditional faith in the End of Prophethood of the Khatam un Nabiyyeen Hazrat Muhammad (p.b.u.h.), (2) He is not a follower of any person who claims to be a prophet in any sense or of any description after the Prophethood of the Holy Prophet (p.b.u.h.), nor does he consider such claimant to be a Messenger or a religious reformer, (3) He should not be related in any way to any person from Qadiani/Ahmadi/Lahori Community or sect, nor call himself or get called Qadiani/Ahmadi/Mirzai/Lahori (4) Successful bidders for the plots in the said scheme will not be eligible to transfer the acquired plot subsequently to any member of the Ahmadi/Qadiani/Mirzai/Lahori sect; otherwise the plot/the material and the deposited amount will stand forfeited to the government. Other conditions, terms and information concerning this auction can be had from the undersigned during working hours.

Advertiser: Deputy Director/Secretary District Housing Committee (IPL-1795)

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