Salman Taseer: Resilience that gave us hope -by Zeeba Hashmi

There is nothing unusual about pain; there is nothing different about fear. But courage to overcome fear and pain defines it uniquely for us. Today is a day marked by 26 bullets that ripped the life out the most powerful person from Punjab who dared, and I say that again, who dared to stand for a helpless Christian woman sentenced to death under the discriminatory law we know as: 295C, for a crime as high as drinking water from the same pot that other women were drinking from.

Salman Taseer stood against an unjust system. A system that was designed by the hounds, and vultures, thirsty for power in the pretext of a misinterpreted and manipulated religion—a religion which they also love to call , ironically, a religion of peace. How so? If only they could see how insulting they are to the name of Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) by unjustly glorifying it through systematized exploitation and murder that they have defined through a law. ? Why is THIS not considered insult to Prophet (Peace be upon him) and how is this not considered as blasphemy?

For those who consider themselves righteous must also know that even Saudi Arabia, a country with most rigid laws that many adhere to spiritually, recognized Salman Taseer’s martyrdom against extremists and fanatics.

Perhaps an introverted spectra of how conscience is related to personal convictions depends on what do we hold more valuable to us.

It brings one down to shame to hear “we value religion more than conscience” whereas rationality holds no ground when one declares valuing conscience more because this makes them feel closer to a Merciful God.

Maybe, a very few people remain in this other “humanity first” spectra today like Late Salman Taseer, while others have tragically become mere non-thinking followers of more radical, mechanized version of Islam dictated by their hard-line militant interpreters.

Today is his first death anniversary, and despite complete silence over it by the state, the people of Pakistan, in particular the minorities will never forget the sacrifice of Salman Taseer and Shahbaz Bhatti for giving voice to the innocent, helpless victims of our contentious laws.

Salman Taseer, you may not be with us today, but you left many of us with an inspiration. It was your resilience that gave us hope and restored conscience.

We are thankful to you and one day, history will look up to you as a warrior who fought for reason and justice, despite knowing the dangers involved. You never gave up for Aasia Bibi. May she, and countless of other victims of 295C laws receive justice with their human dignity restored. Rest in peace.

Poem: Resilience:

Resilience is beautiful.

My dear, you’ve got a beard and a bullet
in my name.

I have my voice and spirit
standing in the way of your

Do what you must do.

I’m just not going to go away
too soon.



Latest Comments
  1. Irfan Urfi
  2. Dr. M. Ahmed Khan
  3. Anas