Saturday, 8 January 2011

Salman Taseer Murder Justified

Since I have heard the news about Salman Taseer’s brutal murder I have been incessantly reading news and articles from Pakistan’s English language news sources which have been shedding light on this incident from all imaginable angles but one.

These English language journals, which are reputed to be leaning towards educated westernized public with very liberal tendencies, seem to be deliberately ignoring the root cause of this murder, elimination of which, if done on time, could have saved not only Mr. Taseer’s life but also the lives of so many other so-called liberals who were not news-worthy enough.

During more peaceful years in our country, the nation was, for the most part, preoccupied by a host of problems which could be summarized as corruption; which along with the resulting government incompetence has been costing Pakistanis lives in more ways than we can imagine. From roads to hospitals, from government offices to police constables on the street, from nursery classes in a government school to the offices of the prime minister and the president, the infusion and perpetuation of corruption and ignoring the problem as an inevitable part of living in Pakistan has been costing us lives. Do we have stats about how many Pakistanis are killed in easily preventable violent crimes? Do we have stats about how many Pakistanis are killed by police under the pressure from mafia, feudal lords and politicians? Do we have stats about how many Pakistanis are killed by the lack of health care, lack of medicines or counterfeit medicines? Do we have stats about how many Pakistanis are killed by unqualified doctors? Do we have stats about how many Pakistanis are killed by unhygienic water and food? Do we have stats about how many Pakistanis are killed by the lack of food because they can’t afford any?

Admit it or not, to most Pakistanis, Salman Taseer was nothing more than another stooge of corrupt, Mr. 10 Percent Zardari. Revelations about his affluent lifestyle outraged so many Pakistanis who are on the verge of suicides because of their economic and financial direness. Apathy towards the general public and swiftness of efforts to appease western powers in order to perpetuate their reign has been a signature of virtually all of Pakistani governments including the current one.

For decades, mullahs have been blaming the lack of Islamization for all the problems facing the country and have been attempting to present themselves as the ones who are able to bring about a utopian Islamic society. Until such a society is established, murder of anyone and everyone, according to theses contractors of religion, is perfectly justified. What if innocents are killed along with the “guilty”? You get three answers depending on the religious school of thought of the responder. They are guilty otherwise they must have survived; they are shaheed because their death was accidental; or no one is innocent. Pick one that suits your sectarian leaning. These mullahs and maulanas conveniently ignore the fact that the West has been dominating the entire world for about half a millennium now without any Islamization.

We Pakistanis have a mob mentality and this mob is tired of looking at the governments for the relief. Far too many heads are turning towards the imams of religious fanaticism, who seem to have a very simplistic but brutal worldview which bodes well with the decades of frustration and resentment boiling in the hearts of the public. The lava oozing from this volcano of the public is being streamed by the will of the venomous ulamas; for whom punishment for any disagreement is nothing short of murder.

This mob of turning heads is suicidal. By killing Mr. Salman Taseer they have merely stabbed themselves once more. In a society, where corruption and nepotism is a norm, where ruling elites have no roots in the very nation they are supposed to lead, where short term benefits for selected few always get preference over wider interests of the public, no leader can safely say that he is not going to be hit by the same boomerang with which he has been victimizing so many.

Taseer’s murder was justified not by any secular or Sharia law but by the lawlessness resulting from the corruption and incompetence in every rank and file of government. The very fact that a fanatic like Mumtaz Qadri was able to slip through the gapping holes in government's security apparatus and approach such a VVIP justifies the murder of Salman Taseer, late Governor of the Punjab.

Thursday, 6 January 2011

No Pardon for Asia Bibi

In a quest to appease overly secularized western powers that still identify with Christianity more than ever, late Governor of the Province of Punjab Mr. Salman Taseer didn’t give much thought to the consequential possibilities emanating from what he said and how he said it. Son of a highly respected poet and intellectual did not seem to care for the highly reputable legacy his late father left for him. His worst mistake in the wake of Asia Bibi case was not what he said about the so-called blasphemy law but what he tried to do. His worst blunder was to seek presidential pardon for Asia Bibi.

Given the detailed accounts of Asia Bibi case, the events thereon and onwards, I am very much convinced Asia Bibi is innocent of blasphemy in the true sense of and spirit of Sharia. After the quarrel with her Muslim co-workers who deemed her unclean despite the contrary verdict from Islam about the People of the Book (i.e. Jews and Christians), in the heat of heightened emotions, Asia Bibi might have let something slip that could be contrived into a blasphemous statement and given her Muslim co-workers an idea as to how to go after her with a legal tool which is so easy to abuse.

Nevertheless, under the Sharia law, if she was guilty of slightest slip of tongue, a simple official apology from Bibi will suffice to let her go as a free citizen.

Despite all of my speculative analyses, I still think she never said or did anything criminal under blasphemy law. A fair trial in higher courts can easily prove that. Then why do I say “no pardon for Asia Bibi” you say. It is because a presidential pardon under any condition implies a guilty verdict from none other than the President. A presidential pardon will jeopardize her life even more and possibility of her murder by any members of the public convinced of her being guilty clearly implied by the pardon - not to mention, extra judicial, unethical, illegal maneuvers to please the foreign powers - will be closer to becoming reality.

Asia Bibi should go through a fair trial and best way to help her for any sympathizers would be to grant her legal and financial help in her judicial case. The details of court proceedings and statements of involved parties should be widely made public through print and electronic media in order to draw a clearer and unbiased picture of the facts in the minds of general public of Pakistan. All the accusers should be brought to court and should be punished for perjury and false accusations after the acquittal of Asia Bibi. If possible, Islamic punishments should be implemented on accusers if they are found guilty of laying false accusations.