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Jul-08-2013 02:09printcomments

No Place for Minorities in Imran Khan's Naya Pakistan

It does make me feel that there must be some form of racism or discrimination towards people of other faiths especially in Pakistan where the minority is less valued as a worthy human being.

Imran Khan
Imran Khan photo courtesy: tribune.com.pk

(ISLAMABAD) - A lot has been written about the plight of minorities in Pakistan – some by the minorities themselves and some by the majority. Minority rights in Pakistan were always broken. The majority always copes while the minority bears the brunt.

In this piece, however, I want to focus on another aspect of the statement Pakistan Tehreek e Insaaf – PTI leader issued. I heard Imran Khan many times and observed that he is not in favor of Pakistani minorities. During the 2013 election drive, he never favored them, neither has he given priority to Christians in the priority list submitted to ECP. Christians are the biggest minority in Pakistan but in second place in terms of purpose.

PTI is a pro Islamic political party and it is clear that PTI's leader has been favoring Taliban and has been in the favor of Jammat e Islami – which is a radical political party and ally party of PTI in KPK. The PTI chief had been claiming for years that his party will provide justice to every citizen irrespective of cast, creed and religion but I personally observed him as a rigid/fundamentalist.

PTI's nomination of its Chief Minister in KPK is showing the real face of PTI after coming in power in one province of Pakistan. While delivering his statement, he said that sanitary workers (cleaning drains, streets and roads) jobs will be given to minorities (Christians, Hindus and schedule casts) only. Muslims from the province are not eligible for this job. On July 2, 2013, RAZA ROOMI and BEENISH SALEEM have spoken about this statement on CAPITAL TV in SEEDHI BAAT (Talk Show).


Finally, someone from PTI spoke and has shown the double standard of their mentality. It is worth reflecting that in Europe and America Muslims have built mosques by the thousands and practice their faith daily, and it does not cause any disruption. Lately, since 9/11 there has been some change in attitudes by Europeans’ but it is minor compared to the horrors minorities face in Pakistan. Christians have been serving the nation in the educational sector, health and social sectors. Unfortunately, ZA Bhutto nationalized these institutions and declared them second class citizens. Now, PTI's leader forces them to perform cleaning or sanitary jobs.

Parvez Khatak really hurt the feelings of minorities and Christians are disappointed from the change they planned to bring in the country.

Dr. Nazir S Bhatti, President of Pakistan Christian Congress (PCP) has strongly condemned the statement and demanded immediate clarification from Imran Khan, chief of PTI on his party leader. He urged the Pakistani Christians to stay away from PTI because its next step might be to might announce separate dress for non-Muslims in KPK.

Albert David – Chairman Pakistan United Christian Movement - PUCM declared the remarks from PTI leadership as highly insensitive, discriminatory and biased. PUCM chief has demanded a public apology and the resignation of Mr. Khattak, otherwise PTI will face a strong protest by Non Muslim Pakistanis if the leadership of PTI does not take immediate action. Is this “changing” that PTI had been rallying for, he questioned the PTI leadership?

Shireen Mazari PIT spokesperson said when I asked about this statement, that she would send me a text massage, and "It was not against minorities," then spoke against a previous minister who hired hoards of sifarshis as sweepers and once in there these people said they could not do the job as they were “Muslims” and wanted to be posted elsewhere! So the CM said if these people refused to do the job they were hired for because they were Muslims and wouldn’t clean etc then they should be fired and Christians who needed the job should be hired instead. So how is that being against minorities?

It is amazing that the people refused to do the job they were hired for and CM declared this job is only for minorities. I wanted to ask the Christian campaigners, have they invested their time and money for this day?

It does make me feel that there must be some form of racism or discrimination towards people of other faiths especially in Pakistan where the minority is less valued as a worthy human being and thus are given jobs considered lower-end for (according to some societies) lower- class/worthless/low status people. I, however, think that is simply being out of order. You can’t go around treating people who are not on the same level as you or who don’t share the same religion as you to give them jobs that are inferior just because they are inferior to you on the basis that they are not Muslims. It is morally wrong way to go about dealing with people.

About Shamim Masih

"I am Christian rights activist and freelancer Pakistani journalist specializing in writing about Christians rights for the different papers in the world. My aim is to create a peaceful environment in the society and to help eliminate Christian persecution through my writing as I bring the plight of these brave people under the spotlight of the whole world."

Shamim Masih was born in Sheikhopura's village and raised in Gujranwala, a city in Pakistan's Punjab province. He earned his Bachelors Degree from the University of the Punjab, Lahore majoring in English, Economics and Statistics; he also received a Masters Degree in Business Administration.

As a freelance writer and author, Shamim has written for different papers in the world; his expertise is in writing articles highlighting different social issues. He has served as freelance chief reporter and column writer in “Minority Times” in Islamabad, and a number of Shamim's articles have been published in local papers as well.

You can write to Shamim at this address: shamimpakistan@gmail.com

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shazia afridi July 8, 2013 10:02 am (Pacific time)

It sounds like DEFAMING PTI is a regular source of income now a days in Pakistan. Poor people learned how to survive in this corrupt system.

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