Pakistan and Facebook: both victims of Lahori Islam – by Ahmed Nadeem Gehla

There is a ‘mass madness’ ranging from TV talk shows to headlines of News Papers and debate on internet. Charged workers of religious organisations are out in streets of Pakistan. As Malaysian are relatively more religious people as compared to Pakistani’s and share the same Prophet. I was thinking that today country would be choked like Pakistan from electronic blackout to burning shopping malls and McDonalds. Especially, the State of my work my worst as it is currently being ruled by a conservative religious party considered as ‘fanatic’ as Jamat e Islami of Pakistan.The conservative religious rulers of the State where I work have already declared Friday as a off day despite the fact the rest of the country have off days of Saturday and Sunday.

Since yesterday Pakistan Telecommunication authority has blocked Facebook, Youtube and Wikipidia along with interruption in Blackberry services on orders of a ‘Holly Lordship’ of Lahore High Court. The bearded Mullah are on the loose in streets chanting against western infidels burning tyre’s and destroying public property. There are 45 million Pakistani users of social media site Facebook, twice the entire population of another Islamic state, Malaysia. Many of them running businesses, charities and communicating with families and friends have been deprived of access to communication without being heard by a religiously charged self righteous judiciary. All being done in name of a ‘Holly Cause’ to defend the Prophet of Islam (PBUH) from conspiracies of Infidel west.

So, this is Friday today, my neighborhood mosque is packed, the Imam is shouting in loudspeaker at top of his voice, but it is ‘state approved’ weekly address. There is no mention of Facebook or waging war against infidel west for conspiracies against Prophet (PBUH). I am a bit disappointed. I decided to go to town as there might be ‘some fun’, i mean, chanting bearded men carrying sticks and guns, smashing cars and street lamps. To my disappointment traffic is as smooth as always, bazaars are busy and shopping malls are packed with young couples holding hands. There is no Kalashnikov wielding ‘warrior of Allah’ to flog the girls wearing mini skirts or to harass those wearing scarf. No body is even talking about the great conspiracy against Prophet of God – a page on Facebook website set up by some western kid.

Now I am rather frustrated. I miss Lahore, you can have lot of fun there. I decided to go to beach, fortunately just walking distance from my house. The ‘white’ tourists girls are taking ‘sun-bath’ wear just bras and panties. White men are drinking beer, some are enjoying water sports and others swimmingLocals are busy selling spicy foods and expensive gift items to tourists. What is wrong with this country? I am totally mad at these people. They are totally unaware of the great conspiracy against there Prophet while their Muslim brothers in Pakistan have literally choked their country to defend their religion. Extremely disappointed I return home in hope of finding something in papers or Malaysian Blogs, unfortunately here too is no mention of Facebook, no statement from any politician or religious leader.

On my Facebook page which is working finely in this Islamic state, I ask my Iranian, Saudi and Indonesian friend, from three biggest Islamic nations, the business is as usual. No wonder Pakistan is ‘Fort of Islam’, no other Muslim nation is concerned about ‘infidel’ conspiracies against Islam. The worst thing about these nations is that ordinary people even doesn’t know the names of their Chief Justice’s or Army Chief’s. Off course their Chief Justices are not that ‘Media Savoy’ and their Judges as ‘righteous’ as Lordships of Lahore High Court. And on top of it the ‘Islamic Lawyer Forum’ here is not as active in defense of Islam. Their religious leaders are not as bold to smash cars and burn shop and their youth not as radical as our international fame ‘Taliban’. The life is totally boring.

Back in 70′s Pakistan too was a quite boring place and quite ‘Un-Islamic’ when General Zia hanged Bhutto with help of Lahori judges and establishment started the ‘Islamisation process’.With help of scholars of Jamat e Islami, right wing ‘handpicked’ judiciary and ‘inducted journalists in media he successfully transformed it as a ‘model Islamic state’. The real ‘fun’ started when CIA funded and organised the PNA movement bringing all right wing factions on one table. The ‘righteous men’ used to protest together against Bhutto and offered their prayers separately. That time we still had not reached the stage of suicide attacks on rival sects prayers. Thanks to ‘Madodisation’ of syllabus of government institutions, today even a ‘Normal’ Pakistani’ youth is as radical as a so called ‘fanatic’ in Malaysia.

With American sponsored ‘Holly War to Defend Islam’, the religious groups have become major players in power game. First time Army has dumped these groups on American pressure but once in the market, there is always another ‘buyer’. After decades of ‘power sharing’ every institution has became a state within state and always ready to hire the religious fanatics to forward their agenda. These groups can not survive if there a ‘long interval’ without activity for their members. They need to organised ‘Warm-Up’ events for their members in order to keep them in’combat ready’ mode.

By any standard of censorship or sensitivity, it was sufficient when PTA blocked the ‘controversial link’ of Facebook. Was there really a need for ‘Judicial Interference’ to block entire website or protests, rallies, blockage of internet and madness of this level to choke the entire nation? If this all was really necessary then why same is not happening in rest of Islamic world? This is something to really worry about. This is not incidental that every second terrorist is associated to Pakistan while those who ‘preach’ and nourish extremism are always under protection of some institution, either military or judiciary and mostly both. While Qazi Hussain Ahmad has much respect for courts and rule of law as Taliban do,as his ‘Brigade’ of Shahab e Milli and Islami Jamiat Talba use same tactics as Taliban do to teach morality in educational institutions.

What is his Qazi’s interest in siding with judiciary. The model of Islamic state of Syed Qutab and Madodi is based on taking over of a state by power and turn it in to a religious authoritarian state. There is no place for judiciary or democracy or freedom of expression. It is not long time when Ansar Abbasi, a JI planted journalist defended the flogging in a live TV show and JI Chief was defending Taliban. When these hate mongers support judiciary or military or defends the freedom of media, there is always some deal as these institutions are actually a hurdle for Madodi’s model of takeover by power. At the same times the state institutions which ally with these groups knowingly that their model even doesn’t recognize these institution have their own needs.

Whenever there is an elected government in Pakistan these groups feel threatened and need allies in state institutions for protection. The institutions after sixty years of power sharing have become too rouge that they also welcome these groups to form alliance. In past establishment, army and agencies used these groups to capture power and nourished them for their agendas. Once dumped by Army same groups have allied them with present judiciary which was restored through a popular movement. In return several JI activists and right wing political workers were appointed judges in superior courts in recent elevations. Some of them even lack a single reported case on their profile.

A part of corrupt media corporates has also joined the alliance to avoid state taxes. This new alliance is based on ‘you scratch my back I scratch your’s’ principal. As result Qazi Hussain and some Anchorpersons are out to implement the ‘judicial order’ of Supreme Court. The judiciary is ‘generously’ passing restraint order against recovery of taxes from these media giants and interfering in religious issues ‘as prayed’ by religious fanatics. Some mainstream media outlets benefiting from ‘judicial activism’ are out to create hype out of non issue like a page on Facebook which was already blocked. This is providing religious fanatics an opportunity to keep their ‘brigades’ warm and combat ready and also to defy and weaken the state, democratic process and unwanted ‘infidel liberal’ government.

This all originates from Lahore and ends there, even other parts of Pakistan are not that active in ‘defense of Islam’ just like rest of the world. Karachi is burning and dozens have been killed in racial violence, Baluchistan is victim of violence, Khyber Pakhtunkhawa is under war and South Punjab is demanding a separate Province. Judiciary, media and Mullah’s from Lahore are silent on all these issues but would not leave any opportunity to defend Islam. Malaysia with 25 million population, every year attracts 25 million tourists with US$ 20 Billion revenue – almost equal to Pakistan’s exports. No tourist can imagine to travel to Pakistan because of the mess created in name of ‘defense of religion’.

Does it really need Einstein to understand that we are in present ‘mass madness’ not in defense of Prophet of Allah (PBUH) against threat from Facebook page but in a power game being played by corrupt and greedy Judges, Mullah’s and some media outlets. If Islam was really under threat the Malaysian Muslim would not have been as comfortable with ‘infidel western’ tourists. Jakarta, Tehran and Riyadh would have also been burning and Facebook, Google, Twitter,Flickr,Wikipedia and Blackberry would have been also blocked in rest of Muslim world. This is not the Islam of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) which is under threat, its interests of Lahori establishment, Mullah’s and Judges who feel threated by power getting in to hands of leaders elected by people. Their interests are under threat and we are happy defending Lahori Islam – of which both Facebook and Pakistan are the victims.



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