Saturday, June 30, 2012

ریاست یا انسان؟

ایک چیز جس کی مجھے آج تک سمجھ نہیں آئی وہ یہ ہے کہ ریاست کو ابدی حقیقت کیوں سمجھا جاتا ہے؟ ریاست کی سرحدوں کو الہامی زار کیوں تصّور کیا جاتا ہے؟ میں اکثر سوچتا ہوں کہ آیا ریاست اہم ہوتی ہے یا ریاست میں رہنے والے انسان اہم ہوتے ہیں؟ کیا ریاستی اداروں کا استحقاق اہمیت رکھتا ہے یا کسی غریب کی فاقہ کشی، کسی جوان کی ہلاکت یا خودکش حملے میں جاں بحق ہونے والے شہریوں کی اہمیت ریاستی اداروں کے استحقاق سے زیادہ ہوتی ہے؟ اور اس سے بڑھ کر سوال یہ پیدا ہوتا ہے کہ یہ استحقاق ان کو دیا کس نے ہے؟ کیا خدا نے دیا ہے؟ کیا کوئی ترک خلیفہ اپنی وصیت میں لکھ کر چل بسے تھے؟ کیا کوئی اقبال کا خضر راہ آیا اور ان ریاستی اداروں کو تمام فیصلے کرنے کا حق دے کر چلا گیا؟

اکثر ذہن میں یہ بات بھی آتی ہے کہ انسان تو اس خطہ میں ہزاروں سالوں سے زندہ ہے اور خوشی کے ساتھ رہ رہا ہے۔ کسی زمانے میں یہاں پر وادی سندھ کی تہذیب تھی، پھر گپتا آئے، ہریانکا، پھر شاید کُشن سلطنت، موریا سلطنت، ناندَا سلطنت، گرجارہ-پراتی ہارہ سلطنت، پھر امیہ سلطنت، پھر محمود غزنوی، محمد غوری، تغلق، خلجی، سکندر، لودھی، مغول، سلطنتِ انگلستان، اور پھر تقسیم ہند ، اس کے بعد تقسیم پاکستان اور پھر آج کا موجودہ پاکستان۔ ان عظیم سلطنتوں میں سے کوئی سلطنت نہیں بچی۔ کسی کا مندر رہ گیا، کسی کی مسجد، کسی کا محل تو کسی کا کارخانہ۔ کسی نے بڑے بڑے قبرستان دنیا والوں کے لیے چھوڑ دیے تو کسی نے بڑے بڑے باغات۔ مگر ان تمام سلطنتوں میں جو شے ساکت رہی وہ تھے یہاں کے رہنے والے لوگ۔ سلطنتیں آئی، سلطنتیں گئی، راجہ پیدا ہوئے اور راجہ مرگئے، ممالک بنے، ممالک ٹوٹے، کوئی بنگالی بن گیا، کوئی بھارتی اور کوئی پاکستانی۔ لیکن ان تمام سلطنتوں، القاب اور ممالک میں مقدس کیا تھا؟ سوائے اس خطے کے لوگوں کے کچھ بھی تو مقدس نہ تھا۔ پھر آج اس بکواس کی کیا وقّت رہ جاتی ہے کے فلاں ریاست قیامت تک رہ گی، اور فلاں ریاست ختم ہونے کو ہے۔ یا اُن مسخروں کو کیا کہا جائے جو کسی وقتی ریاست کو خدا کے الہامی منصوبے کا حصہ سمجھتے ہیں؟ شاید ایسے لوگوں کو معصوم سمجھ کر معاف کردینا چاہیے۔

اگر ہم اس بات کو دل سے مان لیں کے ریاست کوئی ٹھوس حقیقت نہیں، بلکہ کسی خطے میں رہنے والے مضبوط طبقہ کا عمومی لقب ریاست ہوتا ہے تو ہمارے کئی مسائل حل ہوسکتے ہیں۔ مثلاً، یہ کے ایک عام خوش فہمی یہ ہے کہ ایٹم بم نے پاکستان کو بچا لیا۔ سوال یہ ہے کے کون سا پاکستان اور کس کا پاکستان؟ بھارت اور پاکستان میں رہنے والے متوسط طبقوں کے مسائل تو ایک جیسے ہی ہیں۔ ان طبقوں کو ایک دوسرے سے کیا خطرہ؟ اور جب دونوں طرف کے عوام ایک دوسرے سے محبت کرتے ہیں تو پھر یہ ایٹم بم کس کے لیے؟ اس سے صاف ظاہر ہوتا ہے کہ دونوں ریاستوں نے یہ بم اپنی اپنی "ریاستوں" کو بچانے کے لیے بنایا ہے۔ یعنی اپنے اپنے مفاد پرست ٹولوں کو بچانے کے لیے۔

اگر ان تمام سوالوں کا صحیح تجزیہ کیا جائے تو ہم تین نتائج اخذ کرسکتے ہیں:
۱۔ ریاست کوئی جامد شے نہیں، بلکہ تاریخ میں یہ بنتی رہتی ہے اور ٹوٹتی رہتی ہے۔
۲۔ ریاست بنیادی طور پر ایک خاص طبقہ کی نمائیندگی کرتی ہے۔
۳۔ ریاست کوئی ابدی شے نہیں، بلکہ اُس زمین پر رہنے والا انسان ایک ابدی شے ہے۔

اس سے صاف ظاہر ہوتا ہے کہ اگر ریاستِ پاکستان، یہاں بسنے والے انسانوں ( یا جن کو آج کل پاکستانی کہا جاتا ہے) کی خفاظت اور خدمت نہیں کر پارہی، تو وہ اس کام کا ٹھیکا کسی اور کو دے دے۔ کیونکہ ریاست ہو یا نہ ہو، لیکن اس بات میں کوئی شک نہیں کے انسان یہاں ہمشہ آباد رہے ہیں اور رہے گیں۔

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Book Review: The Battle for God


The Battle for GodThe Battle for God by Karen Armstrong
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Publisher: Ballantine Books

Price: Rs/= 1150
Pages: 442




In The Battle for God, Karen Armstrong traces the history of fundamentalism in the three monotheistic religions, i.e. Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. The author explains fundamentalism to be a modern phenomenon, which could only take place in our modern times. It is only in the post twenty century world that religion has been sent into the aisles while the values of liberalism control all aspects of human life. It is this attitude towards religion which allows the fundamentalist zeal to grow out of bounds. Fundamentalists consider themselves as the last saviours of religion; they have a mission to bring back religion from the aisles to the centre of our modern society.

Karen Armstrong gives a detailed account of different fundamentalist tendencies in the three faiths. She analyses the Heredims in Judaism, Protestant premillennialism in Christianity, and Syed Qutb's and Khomini's revolutions in Islam.

All these movements have transformed religious mythos into logos. In the pre-modern world, myths were never meant to be considered form a rational point of view. The inherent enigma present inside the mythos allowed people to connect with the divine. The logos, the practical aspects of religion, was always complemented these mythos. Therefore, a perfect balance between mythos and 'the practical' was always present. This balance was completely destroyed after the rise of scientific modern world. This new world was based on tangible and empirical evidences, with no room for mythos. Everything that was logo was open for a critical examination. As the fundamentalist cannot disregard mythos, they have tried to transform their respective religious mythos into concrete ideological logos. Be it the theory of Zionism, the idea of rapture, or the institution of Vilayat-e-Faqi. On the basic level, it is the transformation of mythos that has provided the much need energy to drive fundamentalism in the modern world.

Secondly, in today's world, Nihilism has become a basic ingredient of fundamentalist movements. They have created suicide bombers, excommunicated people who criticise their ideologies, and have put their back towards the modern world. It is these nihilistic tendencies which drives Jewish fundamentalist to plan an attack on the Dome of Rocks and Muslim fundamentalists, such as Taliban, to kill innocent men and women in the name of God. Nihilism has become an integral part of their program.

Meanwhile, the book also maintains that fundamentalism is primarily a modern movement. It is a reaction to the ethos of the modern world. In this respect, fundamentalism isn't an inherently religious movement. It has originated due to the internal dialectics of modern societies. Hence, it is the scientific drive which has led Christians and Muslims alike to test their sacred scriptures on the touchstone of modern science. Moreover, the alienation created as a result of the total neglect of mythos has clearly distorted our subconscious self. Humans always need mythos as much as they need logos. This alienation has created, in the words of Sartre, a "God-shaped hole" that needs to be filled up. Fundamentalism tries to fill this alienation problem, but mostly it is unsuccessful in performing this task.

The author has done an excellent job in trying to explain the fundamentalist's view point from their own perspective. Without understanding their believe structure, it is quite impossible to dialogue with them. Dealing with a fundamentalist is like dealing with an anachronistic person. A modernist and a fundamentalist can never understand each other points of view, because they don't exist on the same plane of thought.

The book prophetically claims hat fundamentalism is here to stay. Liberalism hasn't been able to solve all human problems on the basis of rationality. Fundamentalists of the three faiths will always exploit this fact for their personal agendas.

The aim of this seminal book was to present a historical analysis of Fundamentalism. The author has excellently done her job. She has elaborated all forms of fundamentalists tendencies which have arisen in these great faiths. The book is highly referenced and an excellent bibliography is presented at the end.

View all my reviews

Friday, June 22, 2012

Preface from the 'Tragedy of Iqbal's Philosophy'

In a thoroughly researched book written by Dr. Saluddin Darwaish, the author tries to criticise Dr. Iqbal's spiritual framework from a modernist (materialist) perspective. 

Dr. Darwaish  titles his book 'Fikr-e-Iqbal ka Almiya' [Tragedy of Iqbal's Philosophy]. The book is pertinent for our time as Iqbal's poetry has become a catch phrase for denouncing all aspects of modern progress and development. Furthermore, all school of political and religious thoughts - i.e. socialists, Islamists, capitalist, all sectarian schools and  nationalist - overly quote Iqbal's poetry to find support for their individual thought paradigm.

The author aptly and unequivocally writes that Iqbal has excessively criticised materialism in all its form. The poet doesn't take into account the positive aspects of the modern West, which has changed everyday life. From aeroplanes to cars, and from computers to mobile phones, all these developments are outcomes of material progress. Iqbal's spiritual paradigm cannot create such a world; hence, Iqbal's goal to achieve Western progress through spiritual development is near to impossible. This is the fundamental tragedy in Iqbal's thought.




What follows is a translation from the preface written by the author. The title is 'Chand Baatain' (Few Words):

From the Mullas who sits on the pulpit to enlightened democratic intellectuals, and from moderate thinkers to Marxist revolutionaries; the thought that amazed me the most was, even with all ideological differences between these schools of thought, how do they simultaneously cite Iqbal? How is Iqbal expectable for all of them? I always believed either Iqbal's thought had some universality that magnetized conflicting schools of thought towards a single philosophical centre or that they one-sidedly cited Iqbal's philosophy to find support for their personal ideological frameworks. When I started my work on Materialism, Iqbal's spiritual philosophy always attracted me. Therefore, between 2004 and 2006, whenever I got time, I indulged in reading Iqbal's poetry and lectures. During this period, I made notes (from Iqbal's work) with the idea of trying to connect Iqbal's poetry with his prose. When I saw some signs of success in my effort, I thought of doing a comparative analysis (of Iqbal) from my materialistic perspective in the light of the problems of modern civilization and its solution. I decided to write openly on Iqbal. In 2006, I wrote a dissertation on Iqbal's Urdu poetry.

The completion of this dissertation allowed me to atriculate that — specifically speaking  the Enlightened, Moderate, Democratic, Progressive and Materialistic communists use Iqbal's poetry for the advertisement of their specific ideologies. They do not have a full grasp on Iqbal's philosophical paradigm. What else can we call this attitude except a spiritual self-delusion of the aforementioned materialists?

The second important source of Iqbal's philosophy is his 'Madaras' Lectures'. They were compiled in a book form and titled 'The Reconstruction of Religious Thought in Islam'. Criticism on this work required extreme delicacy. After reading all criticism and research work on this subject, a big problem for me was that the book  Iqbal's philosophical thoughts   was analysed as a religious script. On the other hand, Iqbal himself writes in the  preface to this book that all subjects presented in here are completely open to criticism and objection. In reality, it is Iqbal's preface, which has allowed me to criticise these lectures with complete freedom. 

.......... (Acknowledgement to Halq-e-Arbab-e-Zook, Manzar Naqvi and Dr. Roosh Nadeem)

This book isn't written for condemning Iqbal; rather it is an attempt to appreciate him. If any aspect of admonition is somewhere visible, ignore it as stylistic weakness. It is Iqbal who has provided me the courage to dissent, not the imitators of Iqbal [i].

Dr. Saluddin Darwaish.



P.S.
[i] imitators of Iqbal : people who blindly follow Iqbal, and cannot listen any criticism on his thoughts.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Recent media polls on Pakistani TV anchors

Certainly, the internet doesn't represent the whole spectrum of Pakistani society; likewise, the private media also doesn't represent the whole spectrum of Pakistani society. Private capitalist media is mostly seen in urban and semi-urban areas of Pakistan. They have no reach in the far flung villages and towns, keeping these villagers save from psychological brainwashing which they do in the urban centres.

On the posit that people who watch electronic media also use the internet, a poll on the internet gives a raw figure what the people think about TV anchors in the post-Media Gate scenario.

In a recent poll by DAWN, people out-rightly rejected the credibility of media anchors. The question asked in the poll was, "Do you think the recent talk show scandal has reduced media's credibility?"  The results are: 

DAWN poll taken on 20/6/2012 (6.16 PM).

More than 90% of the internet voters voted "YES". In their view the media has lost its credibility. Even if we assume that their is a plus/minus 20% error in the figures, even then 70% people still have no credibility in Pakistan news media. This is devastating for the news creation industry. I think these anchors should run for the forests or shift to other industries!

In another poll conducted by Express Tribune, netizens gave a very similar opinion. This time, they were posed a different question. The poll asked: "Do you believe that Meher Bokhari's and Mubashir Lucman's interview with Malik Riaz was scripted?" Again, the results are devastating for the news media industry:

Express Tribune Poll on Mazhar Abbass' article
taken on 20/6/2012 (6.31 PM)

We can see that more than 90% voters are of the opinion that the Malik Riaz interview was scripted. In other words, it was no different from a third rated film, drama or theatre shows. The voters consider serious new programs similar to entertainment programs, thus clearly damaging the intrinsic character of news industry. It's a shame for a scientist if someone calls him a joker. Likewise, it's a shame for an anchor person if someone compares him or her with Charlie Chaplin or Marilyn Moore. I have all respect Charlie Chaplin or Marilyn Moore. It is shameful for the journalist to be compared with entertainment industry characters.


Another poll result question whether we really need need television talk shows. The results are:


Polls by journalismpakistan.com taken on 20/06.2012 (7.00 PM)

Will the urban middle class stop watching the corrupt and capitalist news media? Unfortunately, the answer is 'no'. There is no alternate to electronic news medium. The news industry is either controlled by capitalist tycoons or the government. The social media can act as an alternate, but the recent censorship by PEMRA has sabotaged this source of information sharing. All important sources of information are blocked by the PEMRA censorship board in Pakistan.

Secondly, internet access in Pakistan is lower compared to cable TV access. Everyone cannot excess Youtube and social blogosphere. Considering the low literacy rate in the country, even if people have access to them, it won't be useful for bringing a change.

All in all, the Capitalist media will continue to reign on our lives.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Can Gilani be ousted?

PM Gilani. Source: DAWN
The court has won and democracy has lost. In an excellent strategic move by the Supreme Court of Pakistan, the cheif justice has diverted all media attention from his son , Dr. Arsalan Ifthikar, shifting the new focal point towards Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gillani.

The Journalists are jubilant. The court's decision has given them a chance to enshroud the recent Media Gate scandal. Nineteen top journalists were working on Mr. Malik Riaz's pay roll. They were illegally defending a capitalist, who had strong ties with the elite of the Pakistan Army and political establishment. The video leak was a puncture in the Journalist-Capitalist-Military union. Someone had to save them from drowning, and behold! The court came to their rescue.

At a juncture where the Supreme Court should had focused on how money manages the intricate power balance, how capital manipulates media attention, and how capitalists and generals agree upon large housing enterprises; the court took an easier path through the forest. Certainly, solving the Media Gate scandal would have allowed the nation to understand the dynamics of illegal capital in Pakistan. It would have unearthed the names of many more corrupt generals, journalists, politicians, and judges. The Supreme Court could have helped in purifying the money supply mechanism in the country, but it failed to do so.

The Supreme Court has directed its attention towards a case that will only help in damaging the immature democratic dispensation. The whole premise for ousting PM Gillani is that he hasn't fulfilled the courts order to file a case against the current president of Pakistan, Mr. Asif Ali Zardari. Is a piece of letter that much important that a nominated prime minister should be forced to leave his office? Will the next PPP prime minister write such a letter? What will the Supreme Court do, if the second nominated prime minister also disobeys the court's order? Will the Supreme Court also oust the second? The decision will only catalyse the present instability in the country. It has opened a new constitutional Pandora's Box, which can only be closed after the end of this government's tenure.

The Court knows that it has opened a Pandora's box. The question is why are they destabilizing the country? The Supreme Court doesn't want to topple the status quo. It's helping the military elite like it has always done in history. It is bringing smiles on the faces of the Punjabi ran establishment. It is helping the noxious and money-hungry media tycoons and journalist. It is weakening democracy, so the chief justice remains the undefeated saviour who can solve all problems of the country. All in all, the decision is going to maintain the status qou, and the power of the majority would still remain in the hands of the non-legislative institutions of the state.


Apart from all this, the decision is unconstitutional from the perspective of any democratic norm. In a democracy, supremacy lies with the majority. It doesn't lie in the hands of a clergy, judiciary, or army elite. The chief justice has no power to topple the decision which 180 million Pakistanis gave in February 2008. He should at least respect the basic premise of democracy that Aristotle told 2400 years ago:
"Democracy arises out of the notion that those who are equal in any respect are equal in all respects; because men are equally free, they claim to be absolutely equal."
But in today's Pakistan, democracy has become - in the words of Emerson - a government of bullies tempered by editors. In our context, the bullies are the judges while the editors are the media journalists.

Now, the Supreme court insists that the Prime Minister should write a letter to the Swiss authorities. The constitution is very clear about the issue presidential indemnity. Article 248 of the constitution states:
248. Protection to President, Governor, Minister, etc.
(1) The President, a Governor, the Prime Minister, a Federal Minister, a Minister of State, the Chief Minister and a Provincial Minister shall not he answerable to any court for the exercise of powers and performance of functions of their respective offices or for any act done or purported to be done in the exercise of those powers and performance of those functions:
Provided that nothing in this clause shall be construed as restricting the right of any person to bring appropriate proceedings against the Federation or a Province.

(2) No criminal proceedings whatsoever shall be instituted or continued against the President or a Governor in any court during his term of office.
(3) No process for the arrest or imprisonment of the President or a Governor shall issue from any court during his term of office.

(4) No civil proceedings in which relief is claimed against the President or a Governor shall be instituted during his term of office in respect of anything done by or not done by him in his personal capacity whether before or after he enters upon his office unless, at least sixty days before the proceedings are instituted, notice in writing has been delivered to him, or sent to him in the manner prescribed by law, stating the nature of the proceedings, the cause of action, the name, description and place of residence of the party by whom the proceedings are to be instituted and the relief which the party claims
Why is Mr. Iftikhar Chaudry insisting the Prime Minister to follow an unconstitutional order? Has he not read the constitution? I hope he must had read it.

Rather than solving Dr. Arsalan Ifthikhar case, the CJ has consciously saved his son. Just look at the timing of this decision! Two weeks back, an eminent civil rights activist, Ms. Asma Jahnegir said that 17 judges have no right to rule 180 million people. Then came the issue of DR. Arsalan Ifthikhar bring CJ's son in the  limelight. Next, the SCP (Supreme Court of Pakistan) passed a decision declaring the former Pakistani Ambassador to USA, Mr. Hussian Haqqani, a traitor. Meanwhile, the Media Gate scandal completely destroyed media's credibility. 

This latest decision is the golden egg in the SCP's basket. The Chief Justice will call it a personal victory, while the journalist will view it as an excellent propaganda to cover their ills. 

For me, the recent move by the chief justice is undemocratic by the very definition of democracy. Noam Chomsky commented:
The most effective way to restrict democracy is to transfer decision-making from the public arena to unaccountable institutions: kings and princes, priestly castes, military juntas, party dictatorships, or modern corporations.
The people of Pakistan would never allow a specific institution to seize their constitutional right to govern themselves. 

Monday, June 18, 2012

Theories on the Origin of Urdu Language

Last night    while I was stumbling through my bookshelf   I came across an old research paper related to Urdu language[i]. I set down to read it. It's an interesting paper, and amongst many other things, it gives an alternative view on the genesis of Urdu language.

The paper is written by Ahmed Kamran. It's in Urdu, and the title of the paper is:

"Urdu Zaban va Adab kay kerdar ka awami jamoori qaomi saqafat kay nuqta-e-nazar say tajziya"
["The Role of Urdu Language and Literature in the light of the Democratic National People's Heritage"]

The paper focus on four broad subjects:
1. The genesis of Urdu language
2. The evolution of Urdu
3. The status of Urdu in Pakistan
4. What should be the role of Urdu in the propagation of the national democratic people's heritage


The common view on the origin of Urdu claims that the language is an evolved form of Turkish, Arabic, and Persian. The word Urdo means military camp in Turkish, ergo the complete name of the language is Zaban e Urdu e Mualla (The language of the military and the court). Proponents of this view elucidate that Urdu evolved through the interaction of the foreign conqueror with the local in bazaars and courts. The mixing of the common Hindi dialect with the language of the Mughal courts, i.e. Persian, led to the creation of Urdu. Huhmzah elucidates this idea in a forum post:
Urdu is an Indo-European language so it's most visible affinity is with Persian. When it comes to Arabic's influence on the language it must be noted that (a) the weight of this influence is just lexical-borrowing and (b) the vast majority of these Arabic lexical-borrowings into Urdu were by means of Persian rather than directly i.e. they had been Persianized (and so, as an example, we have the word جنت not جنة etc). 
The word Urdu is just the Turkish word "ORDU" i.e. Army. The full name of the language is "Zubané Ordu o Muella" (The Language of the Army and the Court) -- in brief, this was the Lingua Franca of the Army and the Court during the time of the Mughals. The Mughal emperors were of Turkic descent and spoke Turkish (a dialect called Chaghatay). Turkish was thus a strong presence in the Mughal court, and many of their memories and personal discourses are written in Turkish. Farsi was used when it came to formal discourse. Native Indic languages were also a presence in the court. Urdu is thus, by design, a hybrid of these languages.
He goes on to give different examples on the grammatical and syntactical similarities between Turkish, Urdu and Persian. Huhmzah presumes that Urdu is an Indo-European language; hence it has no ancestral relationship with local languages spoken in the subcontinent prior to foreign conquests.

Another commonly held view on the origin of Urdu is given be Mahmud Sherani. He says that Urdu developed after Mahmud Ghaznavi conquered Sind and Punjab. He holds the view that:
Urdu language originated in the first contact of the Muslims and Hindus after the conquest and incorporation of the Punjab and Sind In the Empire of Mahmud of Ghazni. In his book Punjab men Urdu, he has discussed the structure and morphology of the Urdu language and has shown grammatical affinity which it has with the Punjabi language. After the occupation of Delhi by the Ghoris, the Punjabi Muslims and Hindus, who had already become familiar with the Persian language migrated to Delhi in order to run the administration of the new government. This exodus of people on a large scale from Lahore to Delhi influenced the Khari Bholi or the Hindi spoken in Delhi and its neighbourhood. In course of time the Punjabi words and idioms became interwoven in the Hindi of Delhi and thus a new language came into being.
Like the first view, Mamud Sherani also postulates that Urdu developed after foreigners attacked the subcontinent. There was no existence of Urdu prior to the attack led by Mahmud of Ghazni. Later on it developed as a language through interactions in the Persian courts.

Both of these commonly held views consider Urdu a foreign creation. That is to say, it was after the attack of Muhammed bin Qasim on Sindh during the Umayyad Caliphate that Urdu came into existence. Hence, Urdu has no cultural, social, historical, or literary roots in the sub-continent. If there had been no conquest in the year 711, there would have been no Urdu.

The paper by Ahmed Kamran differs from these commonly held views. He says that Urdu sentence structure  was present in the sub-continent before foreign powers came into the subcontinent. Urdu has neither developed as a result of the interaction between Persian and Arabic languages nor did it come into existence in the reign of Shah Jahan. The author claims that Urdu was one of those hundreds of local dialects spoken in the subcontinent. He writes:
"[Urdu] is one of those hundreds of commonly used dialects that were spoken in the subcontinent at the time when Aryan-Vedic languages came here, and from than on, it has been used continuously as a vernacular. We call these dialects Prakerteen. The grammar, syntax, structure, diction, and pronunciation of Urdu are all Indian (in nature)."
He continues:
"[Urdu] has a three thousand years old history. During this interval different foriegn languages, e.g. Vedic, Persian, Arabic, and English intermixed with Urdu, hence different Prakert became a part of it." 
The author cites examples of Hindu reformers, e.g. KhabeerDaas and Naam Veo,  who used Urdu as a tool to interact with the common folks. We can also find the presence of Urdu syntax in the Hindu scripture Reeg Veda. This elucidates the point that Urdu was an old language which was already in use.

It should be noted that the ambiguity about the evolution of Indian languages was deliberately propounded  by the colonial rulers. They presumed that when foreign nations occupy a land, then cultures, myths and folklores of that particular civilization starts to diminish. The foreign power overwhelms all walks of life, toppling all traditional structures formerly present. The author writes:
"They hold this opinion because they themselves were a foreign power, and wanted to keep India under their control forever. Hence, they concluded that after the arrival of Aryans, the local people vanished or migrated toward the south as Black people. Their languages vanished, and Aryan became the lingua franca."
Rather than trying to seek the origins of Urdu in some foreign land; we should search its genesis inside the subcontinent. A language is a source of pride, value, and love for every nation around the world. It is through words that people express emotions, feelings, believes, and retention of scared literature is possible through languages. A theory which tries to sought the origin of a language inside its land will always ameliorate the amiability of the people.

One of the well-known tragedies with Urdu has been is that it's considered a foreign Muslim invention. This is nothing more than a myth. There had been great non-Muslim writers, e.g. Preem Chand and Ghang Bhat, who had helped in the development and evolution of Urdu. An attempt to Persianize `or Arabinize Urdu will only weaken its natural beauty. People deliberately use foreign words in order to pontificate. Some of my observations are:




Reference:
[iv] VIEW: The origins of Urdu —Ishtiaq Ahmed

Friday, June 15, 2012

The media capitalist relationship

A recent video leaked on YouTube has triggered one of the biggest media controversy in Pakistan. The video shows two Pakistani journalists doing a predetermined interview with the business Tycoon Malik Riaz. The off-air discussion between Mr. Riaz, Ms. Bukhari, and Mr. Luqman,shows how capitalism runs the media for pursuing its goals. The video is 30 minutes long. The two journalist act as if they work for Mr. Riaz:

Mehar Bukhari (B) : `Say what you want... what question should we ask. It will appear as though it is planted...
Mubashir Lucman (L) asks Riaz (R), `Give me a villa like you have given Hamid Mir [who hosts a show at Geo TV]`. 
During the program Luqman also gets angry, while Riaz tries to bring him back to the program. 

***
Mehar Buhkari and Mubashir Luqman in the leaked video

The video shows how capitalism controls every aspect of life in the society. It is capital which allows someone to buy journalist, judges, and generals. In a corrupt society like Pakistan, capital can do wonders. The leaked video is a test case example on how a capitalist use illegal means of power to influence the state. 

The journalist asks for a villa, proving him to be a lapdog of the capitalist elite. The market principles are what dictate the ethics of the journalists. The only unethical attitude, is the one which creates hurdle in the easy flow of capital. Mr. Talat Hussain rightly says:
"میڈیا کا سب سے بڑا احتساب مارکیٹ خود کرتی ہے"
"It is the market to which the media is accountable"
The only purpose for setting up a media industry - or any industry - is to make money. The biggest source of money in a media industry is through advertisement, which comes from large business tycoons. The owner of a media group can never speak against these tycoons, as speaking against them, only diminish their annual profits. No media group want this, and hence the bilateral agreement for the enlargement of market becomes stronger and stronger.

A question arises that why are many media groups criticising this leaked video? The reason is simple; Market principles force them to do so. The media industry runs on the public viewer-ship. If the viewer-ship decreases, this will automatically reduce the advertisement time; hence a decrease in profit would be registered. The money designated for the news media might go to other industries where people have a greater interest. Therefore, the internal critique by the media is an attempt to regain the 'trust' relationship with the viewers. This internal critique is not against the capitalist elite or media corruption; rather it is an attempt to strengthen the media-capitalist relationship.

The Journalist Judiciary alliance will also gain strength. The whole news media industry is supporting the Supreme Court's self-motivated action against the leaked video interview. Any friction is the mechanism of JJ alliance will cause inefficiency in the media propaganda mechanism. The journalists support all unconstitutional decisions made by the Supreme Court, while the supreme courts everyday suo-motto action allow the electronic media to develop sensational dramas. Secondly, a weak JJ alliance means a weak Mullah-Military alliance. Untrustworthy journalists cannot perform effective propaganda. In brief, the internal media criticism will strengthen the alliance between the judges, journalists, and capitalists.

In the coming we are going to watch prime time discussion programs related to the leaked video issue. At this point, the public should understand that private media is a capital creating machine. It has nothing to do with helping the society, or the weaker classes. This leaked video is not an aberration in the media industry. This is how the industry works. Mehar Bukhari comments:

 'ایسا تمام ٹاک شوز پر ہوتا ہے تو ان پر کیوں تنقید کی جا رہی ہے۔ ’یہ سب کرتے ہیں۔
"It happens all the time on talk shows. Why are we being criticised? All do this"

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Media Clowns in Pakistan


source:  globalresearch.ca
It's is near impossible to present a new ideology, thought, or opinion in a 1000 words editorial or a 40 minutes commercial laden talk show. 
It is the great media disguise which has turned cynics such as Haroon-ur-Rasheed, Irfan Siddiqui, Oria Maqbool Jan, and Ansar Abbasi into self-posed intellectuals. These characters occupy the media screen and rote the same piece of information again and again to make it a part of our sub-consciousness. They repeat meaningless sentences which makes them meaningful for the commoners, for example:

"Imran Khan will clearly win the next election"
"There was no terrorism before September 2001"
"Zaradari and Gillani are corrupt"
"Everything's wrong in Karachi due to MQM"
"Haqqani's a traitor"
"We need a saviour!"

These actor-cum-journalists try to pose themselves as if they are some great intellectuals who should be respectfully heard. Their distorted chatter in at par with the chattering at any local bus stops. They have no respect for alternate opinions and ruthlessly interject anyone speaking against the general media propaganda. For example, Ansar Abbasi posed himself as an Islamic Ghazi in Hamid Mir's program in an effort to nullify Dr. Hoodbhoy's logical claims. A similar case occurred when Asma Jahengir was on line in a talk show while Haroon-ur-rasheed constantly interrupted her.

The question is, why does the nation listen to such clowns? This is a wrongfully constructed question. It assumes as if the nation listens to few independent observations and then arrives at a decision through a personal dialectical process. The media propaganda process is never an individual thought process. The nation hears the general media perception times after times, which then became a subtle opinion in their minds. In prime-time programs (7 pm-10 pm), many actors solidify the agenda of the day. They use poignant speeches, rhythmic poetry, flaring eyes, beatific rhetoric, some pieces of Islamic history, sometimes they even cry out, and so on. It is such a master piece of drama that it mesmerises everyone. 

The process of deciding the propaganda topic of the days is still an abstruse process. No one really knows how the system works. We don't have a book like Chomsky's Manufacturing Consent for Pakistan. I hope one day, some Pakistani intellectual will try to demystify this propaganda mechanism is Pakistan. Despite that, we can still understand the outline of this media propaganda mechanism through everyday news articles.

Consider the Hussain Haqqani case.

The media projected Mr. Haqqani as a traitor. Aforementioned Journalist (or TV clowns) used every tactic they had to pursue this 'holy' goal. The story of tagging the ex-Ambassador as a traitor doesn't start with the memo myth; rather it goes back to the issue of the Karry-Lugar bill.

Pakistan army was agonized when two US senators subjected US aid to Pakistan to some internal congressional conditions. This included a check as to where the American money is being spent by the army. The bill also insured a future of sustainable democracy in Pakistan. The army was in no mood to accept such 'democratic' conditions, which triggered the media propaganda mechanism.  The army loathed Hussain Haqqani whom they accused was responsible for passing this bill. Working on the dictates of their masters, the paid journalists took on the goal of defaming the Pakistani ambassador.

With all their rhetoric, the defamation campaign again Mr. Haqqani was a failure. The army failed to defame Mr. Haqqani. This agony of losing against a civilian was what triggered the memo myth. This time these extremist journalists were supported by cricketers and politicians. More anti-Haqqani rhetoric was on-air. Baseless sentences were written by columnists in news papers. With the naturally backing by the armed force, the media propaganda mechanism was at its peak. The judiciary was also subdued. This time the manufactured consent was more powerful and more absorbent in the general sub-consciousness. Haqqani has no chance to win, and thus an unarmed civilian lost the battle.

In the Memo myth, one visible fact is the synchronization of army's opinion with the media's opinion. The media propaganda mechanism always tries to increase confusion in the general public, while completely harmonizing the media-army relationship. 

"Conflict" is the catchword for any great drama, and the news media knows how to keep conflicts alive. The net beneficiary of this conflict is always the armed forces and media groups; always belittling politicians and civilians.

This propaganda mechanism theory is applicable in many cases, for example, media propaganda regarding Asma Jahangeer and Prime Minister Gillani. Moreover, the mechanism applauds all actors who are speaking with the same tongue as the military elite of Pakistan, for example, Imran Khan and Right-wing Islamist extremists.

The propaganda mechanism described above is not quite clear yet. More scholarship and research is required to decipher the internal working of this system.

More reference:



Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Another Biased Decision


Following its tradition, the Supreme Court has passed a biased decision on the Memo Issue. The court accused Hussain Haqqani (former ambassador and professor at Huston University) of treason.

A moderate Pakistani has been ousted by the Pakistani judiciary. The decision was not passed on the basis of constitutional norms and ethos; rather the court hearkened to the popular voices on the media propaganda machine. Sycophants, cynics, and extremists with their hate speech and blabber tried to subjugate the cowered judges. The judges reciprocated to these voices, passing a decision against the finest ambassador Pakistan ever had in the United States.

Imran Khan — a senseless character who ridicules all opposition and questions with a big laugh — accused Mr. Haqqani to be a US Ambassador of Pakistan in Washington. In other words, he was calling him a traitor. The cricketer used anti-Haqqani rhetoric to drive his utopian campaign for freeing Pakistan from all ills in 90 days.

The Chief of ISI, Shuja Pasha, also aligned with the unknown Mansoor Ijaz. He also believed that the memo was really written by Mr. Haqqani. The army knew it was false. Supporting Mansoor Ijaz was an excellent tactic to discourage all voices that speak against military interference in Pakistan. The support was a signal rather than an approval of Manzoor Ijaz's testimony. 

It can be observed that many journalists, the entertainer Imran Khan, and the ISI are all against this man. Any person who speaks for democracy and rule of the majority is seen as a traitor. Anyone who speaks — or even signals — for dismantling the military-political hegemony is called an anti-state element. Anybody trying to say the truth is brutally discouraged. 

The judiciary, following the dictates of their owners, has given a decision which was quite anticipated. We cannot hope for justice in a society were "khaki uniform and seventeen judges" rule. There is no justice in a country where a judicial commission believes a man who loathes Pakistan and calls a diplomat a traitor. There is no justice where the judges cite Khalil Jibran, while they themselves concede military dictators. Justice is an abstraction in a country where judges follow popular demands and act on the whims of the chorus.

The judges have deliberately arrived at an incorrect decision, reducing their position of prestige.

Monday, June 11, 2012

9 Predictions till next election — Part II

<< Link to Part1

7. Extremism and terrorism will remain a major problem
The biggest ideological battle going on today is between the moderates and the extremists. Pakistan's involvement in the Afghan war in 1980s and in the first decade of 2000 created a plethora of extremist ideological schools. These schools attracted thousands of youngsters and teenagers in the name of fighting an holy war. The primary thesis which these extremists use is to equate moderations with modernism and then equate modernism as a western concept which finally leads to infidelity. Their poignant speeches and nauseas overwhelm the acumen of a common uneducated teenager.

Furthermore, it should be noted that it's not poverty which drives a common Pakistani towards extremist ideologies. In fact, it is the strength of their self-created myths which actuates the commoners. The presumption that poverty leads to extremism is a fallacy. Anti-extremists forces must analysis their fundamental theories in order to effectively tackle this problem. 

Unfortunately, the moderate schools in Pakistan are cowered by the extremist's rhetoric. Most of them leave the country, stop speaking and writing, or just become silent. We can count outspoken moderates on our fingertips, e.g. Dr. Pervez Hoodbhoy, Dr. Mubarrak Ali, and Asma Jahngeer. A shrinking school of moderate ideology allows the extremists to fill up the gap. 

The media also doesn't project this moderate school of thought in their programs. They project Taliban as the winning force in Afghanistan. A winning Taliban in Afghanistan boosts the moral of the Taliban in Pakistan, allowing wide spread terrorism activity in the country. Intellectuals such as Ahmed Rasid and Tariq Ali are totally excommunicated by the mainstream media. Anti-Americanism envenoms the electronic landscape, propagandising against any measure the Unites States takes in relation to Pakistan. Self-tagged intellectual such as Haroon-ur-rasheed, Irfan Siddiqui and Ansar Abbasi completely distort facts and figures to proves their respective point of views. The media anchors also need education and improvement in their intellectual capacity.

The growing influence of Taliban and Al-Qeada in Pakistan, and the Bin Laden's existence in Pakistan clearly shows that Pakistan is fighting a losing war in which the moderates are gradually waning out. The future looks dark for the moderate forces in Pakistan.

8. Islamists will assert more power
Although it is true that right-wingers have never won a majority (except MMA's government in NWFP during Gen. Mussarraf rule), Dr. Mubarak Ali rightly says, that most of the centrist and leftist parties in Pakistan essentially have an Islamic bent in their manifestos. for example, PTI speaks for an Islamic welfare state; PPP slogan says "Islam is our religion, Socialism is are government"; PML(N) calls the nuclear bombs as a victory not just for Pakistan, but for the Islamic world. Such rhetoric are no more different from right-wing rhetoric. All of them use religion for their personal political gains.

In the next elections, political parties will try to attract the growing Islamised population of Pakistan into their political camps. Whether MMA (or any of its derivatives) wins or PML(N) wins, people from the rows of political Islam will assert more power in the parliament.

In KPK province, ANP will face a fiasco. The rising Islamic fronts will completely overwhelm the mindset of the common Pashtoons. Moreover, the secular ideology of ANP wasn't able to improve the standard of living in the province. Changing the name of a province is meaningless without economic benefits for the commoners. The Islamic front will promise a better life in both worlds, which is a more viable option for the unemployed middle-class.

The Hazara community in KPK is agonised  by PML(N) support for renaming N.W.F.P to KPK. They will definitely look for alternatives such as PTI or any other party that provide them identity within KPK.

All in all, the Islamist "golden age" will come in KPK.

9. 'PTI's tsunami' will come to a halt in many parts of the country
PTI's tsunami is more of a media sponsored drama than a real mass movement. The drama is about to end for sure. As PTI is a social media driven party, considering the google trends graph for PTI proofs this:

Graph plotted by Google Trends (11/6/2012)

Analysing the part of the graph in the black box shows two phenomena. Firstly, the search volume index met its spike at the end of December 2011. After this, we observe a steady decline in PTI's search volume. This shows that that teenagers, and other fans are losing hope in PTI's popular rhetoric. Secondly, the news references volume has remain static along this period showing that media tried its best to project PTI and Imran Khan. With all this media deception, the search results for this internet party have fallen down.

PTI also fails to interpret the 18th amendment in its true light. The party pays no heed to the nationalist tendencies in Balochistan and Sindh. They tried to exhibit Pakistan's flag in Quetta, but failed to do so. Only a few Pakistani flags were visible in the PTI's Quetta rally. PTI fails to understand the trouble the common Balochis have with the idea of Pakistan as a federation. The party fails to understand that the 18th amendment has altered the federal character of the state. 

Likewise in Sindh, PTI ridicules MQM and PPP. They fail to understand the mindset of the urdu-speaking middle-class and Sindhi nationalist. They go on with their 'Utopian rhetoric', in which Imran Khan is depicted as a figure between Jinnah and Iqbal.

The ludic PTI will find its adobe in the lands of Northern and Central Punjab and KPK. Their uproar will find no support in Sindh or Balochistan.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

9 Predictions till next election — Part I

1. Pakistani Rupee (PKR) will further devalue
The rupee will further decline against dollar due to two reasons. The first is Hajj, and the second is elections. 

In the Hajj season many pilgrims carry US$ instead of Pak rupee. An excessive purchase of US$ will decrease its supply in the open market creating a shortage of dollar. This will automatically increase the price tag for the US$, hence further devaluing Pakistani rupee.

Election rallies are going to start from November 2012. Political parties in power will illegally waste the treasury money on their political procession. The government will need a massive amount of money to fulfil such a task. This massive amount of money will come from printing out new notes, hence increasing inflation. This increase in inflation will increase the amount of PKR in the market, further devaluing the currency.

2. Election will not take place this year.
Elections will take place in the first half of 2013. Two basic reasons are Army's mood and the electoral rolls.

The army is in no mood to bring in a martial law in Pakistan. It is fighting a massive war in Waziristan area against terrorism. Its involvement in national politics will bring it bad name, and the will to fight a war will wane. 

Dismantling the democratic setup will open a Pandora's Box in Pakistan. Relationship with United State are at a historic low, the economic growth rate is embarrassing, and terrorism is out of control and sporadic. A martial law would be the last ingredient in this soup of instability.

The electoral roll is the second reason for elections to take place on 2013. These rolls will be completed till the end of October 2012. The process of jotting done all legal voters is difficult and tardy, especially in the flood affected areas of Sindh, and war affected areas of FATA. This makes the process extremely difficult to accomplish. Without a proper electoral count, elections 2013 will be of a theatre show with the same characters.

3. No major change expected in Sindhi constituencies.
Urban and rural Sindh will not face any major constituency change. MQM will remain in power in Karachi, Hyderabad, and parts of Sukkur, while PPP will win in its traditional bastions of power. 

The only spectre haunting PPP is the untied front of all nationalists party combined with PML(N). This spectre might hurt PPP in the banks of Dadu, Nashero Feroz, Khangarh, Khairpur, Thatta and Sangher. An analyst writes:
"The Jatois have a sizable political support and vote bank in Dadu and Naushehro Feroze districts. The Mahars of Khangarh, one of upper Sindh’s most powerful families and considered close to the military establishment, are going to be either in the PML-N or any anti-PPP alliance in Sindh. On the other side of river Indus, Khairpur and Sanghar districts have been witness to a resurgence of Pir Pagaro’s Functional Muslim League. Most analysts say they wouldn’t be surprised to see anti-PPP candidates making big gains in these districts. Thatta district is being ruled by the Shirazis for quite some time now. It is safe to believe that they will be more than happy to be part of any anti-PPP coalition in the province."
This alliance will be a force to reckon with. PPP has to buy in all feudal lords for any political gain. Secondly, PPP must play its traditional 'Sindh card', and win the hearts of the common nationalist Sindhis. One such card can be the abrogation of the Zulfikarabad project — a new city which president Zardari envisaged between Karachi and Hyderabad. 

Apart from this, The Benazir Income Support Program (BINP) will create an additional vote bank for the ruling party. BINP requires every women, who is a part of this program, to have a national identity card (NIC). A NIC allows her to be a part of the electoral list. This new voter will only vote for PPP, as the Benazir welfare fund is her only lifeline for economic survival. 

Meanwhile, MQM won't face any big political challenge in urban centres. MQM's classic rival ANP (a nationalist Pakhtoon party) will balance out the affects of PTI (Imran's party) as both of them attract the 35 million Pakhtoon vote bank in Karachi. Furthermore, the moderate and extremist right-winger also attract Pashtoon votes. Resurgence of Islamist vote will furthermore wane out ANP's vote bank. 

MQM's vote bank in Hyderabad and Sukkur will be a fine ethnic balance with PPP. The JUI(Fazal) might try to attract voters on the name of God, but there are many other parties which will do the same, hence diluting the right-winger vote banks.

4. All PMLs will combine to give a tough fight to PPP.
It is easy to buy and sell allegiances in Pakistan. People sell themselves for a pity amount of money or ministerial posts. This is because we are an ideologically bankrupt society. A nationalist (like Mumtaz Bhutto) merges his party into PML(N) (a party which believes in Pakistan). People from PML(F) go to PPP, while socialists jump into right-wing parties and vice versa.

Considering this, a merger of all Pakistani Muslim Leagues (Functional , Nawaz ,Quid-e-Azam, Awami, Like minded, Zia, All Pakistan) is not out of question. They will join together to counter the merging threat of PTI in Northern Punjab and PPP's threat in south Punjab. 

Most of these PMLs are centre to right parties. They don't explicitly denounce Taliban and other Islamic extremists groups. A combined PML will be the undefeated champion of central Punjab which is the bastion of extremism in Pakistan.

A combined PML will effectively mobilize in KPK province. It is easier to get a vote in a non-Punjabi area if the Pashtoon himself is supporting a federal party. If PML(N) goes into KPK on its own, it might face defeat due to two reasons. Firstly, it failed to satisfy the people of Hazara at the time when N.W.F.P was being renamed to Kyber Pakhtoon Khaw (KPK). This is a major political loophole that the rival parties will exploit to its maximum in the upcoming elections. Secondly, a lonely PML(N) has an implict Punjabi character which makes it similar to the ruling establishment. Merging all PMLs will help in diminishing this opinion.

5. Balochistan will remain out of control
No major progress will be made on the Balochistan issue. The rising anti-Pakistan middle class will forcefully demand secession from Pakistan. The state has failed to comply with the needs of the common Baloch.

From 1970 till now, the Balochistan national assembly has moved 704 resolutions on different topic pertaining to the federation. Unfortunately, the federation hasn't paid heed to a single resolution whatsoever. 

Historically speaking, the region of Kharan, Makran, Lasbella, Averaan, Jhala vaan, and Sara vaan were controlled by the Khan of Kalaat. Jinnah asked him to be a part of Pakistan, which he accepted on the condition that defence, foreign policy, currency, and postal service will remain in the hands of the Khans. Jinnah accepted his proposal of power distribution. Unfortunately, due to the so-called 'Ideology of Pakistan' it was considered treachery to give such power to the province. Henceforth, the agreement between the Khan of Kalat and Jinnah was ruthlessly abolished. Thereafter, the Baloch people have resisted the idea of any singular nation-state, in which the single largest province controls everything. The killing of Akhbar Bughti was the last thing required to agitate to the common Balochis. The military establishment and Punjab laden federation is equally responsible for this mess. 

The killing of common Balochis will not halt, neither the ethnic killing of Punjabis and Hazarras. The situation is expected to deteriorate if the Western world harkens to the Baloch freedom call. At a time when PAK-US relationship is at a historic ebb, the situation needs an excellent control strategy. 

6. Pakistan United States relationship will remain in abeyance
The chances for improvement in Pakistan and United States relationship are low.

The NATO supply route hasn't opened yet. This  is a severe economic detriment for the United State, as it is causing trouble in the mobilization of army back and forth into Afghanistan. 

The trust deficit will take a long time to fill up. OBL's presence in the heartland of Abbotabad is incomprehensibly by the United States. Such a high-value target was hiding in Pakistan, while the world was busy searching him. 

Clues from US tell that even other high-value targets are also hiding in Pakistan. US defence minister remarked:
"Washington is running out of patience with Pakistan over alleged safe havens for Taliban militants.... It is very important for Pakistan to take steps. It is an increasing concern, the issue of safe haven... we have every responsibility to defend ourselves and... we've got to put pressure on Pakistan to take them on as well."
Pakistan's foreign office rejects the aforementioned statement, again showing the trust-deficit between the  two partners. Pakistan's alleged support to terrorists will only deteriorate the conditions. There are no signs for an immediate recovery.

Link to part 2 >>

Thursday, June 7, 2012

The JJ alliance

In the bygone days we read about how Pakistan army orchestrated alliances with Islamists  to win a war in Afghanistan. In those days, Pakistan was the breeding and training ground for the warriors in Afghanistan. Islamic parties sponsored money and men in hope of controlling the future of Afghanistan, while the United State backed the ISI in the delicate balancing act of forging a relationship between the CIA, and Mullahs (i.e. Islamist).

This is one of the darkest chapters in Pakistan history, with effects that will haunt this country for many generations to come. This was the period when fundamentalism was forcefully used for seeking strategic national interests. The army supported the mullahs by giving them power, while Mullahs in turn supported by providing men willing to sacrifice their lives. We passed through the 1980s as the MM (Mullah-Military) alliance aggrandized into a hegemony. Unfortunately, some parts of this alliance went out of control and are today wrecking the country.

Apart from this MM alliance, a new alliance has also developed. This is the JJ (Judges-Journalists) alliance. This JJ alliance is weakening the already fractured democracy by discussing accusation against politicians (especially PPP politicians) without any legal proofs or justification. Anchors with weak information source, biased opinions, cynical outlook, and elongated rhetoric try to influence and distort the psyche of the common people as well as the Pakistani judiciary. These judges play a complementary role, similar to that of Mullahs, by giving such news bites excessive credence. This excessive credence leads to a series of suo motto (self taken) notices in which the judiciary discriminates specific politicians highlighted by clairvoyant journalist. The JJ alliance mechanism works as follows:

JJ alliance mechanism

A millionaire journalist blabbers on his talk show or scribbles words in his column. The judges read the column and correspondingly order the politicians to come to the court. The politicians begs for mercy, as if he was surely guilty.

Doing an utilitarian analysis will prove that the JJ alliance is quadruple capital gains for individuals. The millionaire journalist gains extra rating, his newspaper or TV channel gains new viewer-ship making his boss happier. The judges also gain public courtesy, as in Pakistan we supposedly allege politicians for all wrongs (an idea infused by the military establishment in Pakistan). The politicians loses moral ground, hence weakening democracy and allowing non-democratic forces to takeover. 

This JJ alliance is as harmful to the country as the MM alliance was in the 1980s. Numerous examples can be quoted to proof this allaince:

1) The Atiqa Oddo Alcohol Sou motto notice.
2) Mosa Gillani case.
3) Hamid Saaed Kazmi Hajj scandal.
4) Hussain Haqqani's Memo Scandal.
5) Swiss bank cases pending for 10 year are resurrected by the professional diabolical rhetorics.
6) Accusation against Ameen Fahim.
7) Highly synchronized propaganda against Jamshed Dasti's fake degree, while the only edge these journalists have over Dasti is their adored cosmetics and three-piece suits.
8) The crying Ansar Abbasi is very vocal in this JJ alliance.

In future, this JJ alliance might consider a merger with the MM alliance. The MMJJ pvt. ltd. company will be a tough challenge to the people friendly forces in Pakistan. People should know their rights and speak against any supra-structure in which they don't have domination.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Of Military and Men

One of the major problems in Pakistan is that there is noting to talk on except politics. Common people quibble over issues nothing to do with their personal life or intellectual growth. Some issues are:

1) Agar Amrika na Iran per hamlaa kerdia to kia hoga? (What will happen if US attacks Iran?)
2) Pakistan na Hatf - saat  ka qamiyaab tajubba kia ha. Mashallah! (By the grace of God, Pakistan has successfully fired Hatf-seven missile)
3) Zaradri na hamara ko mulk loot lia, Imran sab sahi kerdai ga (Zardari has rotten out country, Imran will put in order)
4) Sab corrupt hai! (Everyone's corrupt!)

The list can go on forever. 

Praising cruise missiles, armours, and jets have overwhelmed our psyche. More than three different missile have been test fired in the last 3 months. All these missiles have Arabic or Central Asian names with technology copied, purchased, or stolen from the technological centres of Europe. There is nothing much to praise about such an 'alien' object. It's like purchasing a BMW car and exclaiming as if the customer himself made it. Most importantly, only barbarians praise bombs, missiles, tanks and guns. Are we a barbarian nation that we praise bombs with such a religiosity? Bombs only kill innocent men, women and children. Praising bombs is a deeply inhuman instinct, which should be abhorred at the highest level. If the military loves to waste money on such devilish instrument, fine! It should keep it as a military secret away from the local press. 

Secondly, tanks and annealed jets from 1965 wars 'decorate' our crossroads and plazas. These objects might have an aesthetic sense for Halako Khan who sacked Baghdad in the 13th century ending up constructing towers using the remains of human bodies. For normal people, these rejected military souvenirs only create a war psyche which feed the idea of a national security state.

Apart from this military psyche, the second most popular chatter is to affront a single man for all problems, and to consider a single man as the last savoir of Pakistan. Primarily, such an idea develops in a society which has strong tribal and feudal norms. A single feudal is responsible for the material well-being of peasants working on his farm. All peasants look toward him in times of happy or gloomy days. 

The second reason for believing in a super-natural angel or a devil can be sought in Iqbal's poetry. The national poet of Pakistan is revered as the last intellectual in the sub-continent. His poetry is understood literally. Iqbal presents an idea of Mard-e-momin (the quintessence believer) , a super-natural being who'll put everything in order once he's born. This super-man will be a person who will dictate his fate himself:

Khuda banday sa khood poochay bata tarii raza kia ha (God himself asks Man, what is your will)

(An excellent research on Iqbal's idea is presented in Dr. Salaudin Darwesh's book Fikr Iqbal ka Almiya.)

Pakistanis are forced to learn such poetry through a state-sponsored curriculum. Leaders have tried to metamorphose themselves into this abstruse Mard-e-momin and tag their opponents as Mard-e-fasid (The corrupt man). Such a diabolical symmetry is a direct consequence of Iqbal's philosophical project. A easy method to counter such ideas to is include Faiz, Sheik Ayaz, Pashtun, and Baloch poetry in our national curriculum. Strengthening democratic values will also help in diminishing such trends.

The need of the hour is an immediate switch from political talk shows toward programs featuring film and book reviews; poetry and theatre, and history and philosophy. This is the only way to reduce the state of intellectual drought in the country.

Monday, June 4, 2012

قصہ چار مبینہ افیمچیوں کا

پورانا واقعہ ہے کہ چار افیمچی ایک صحرا سے گزر رہے تھے۔ دھوپ کڑاکے کی تھی، تپش سے سامنے کا منظر بےانتہا دھندلا ہوگیا تھا۔ اتنے میں انھیں دور ایک مسجد نظر آئی۔

"یار آیاز بابا، وہ دیکھو، وہ دیکھو، بچاری مسجد، کتنی دھوپ میں کھڑی ہے۔ مجھے افسوس ہورہا ہے"، روتی ہوئی آواز میں زید نے بولا۔ زید عمر میں سب سے بڑا تھا اور نشے کا استعمال بھی سب سے زیادہ کرتا تھا۔ ایک شاعر کا نام بار بار لیتا اور اشعار اس طرح پڑھتا، مانند سکند اعظم کی فوج کا سپاہ سالار ہو۔

"ہاں چچا زید،تو صحیح کہا رہا ہے، چل یار کچھ کرتے ہیں"، عمران نے زید سے کہا۔ عمران سے سارے دوست ڈرتے تھے۔ اس کے ہاتھ میں ہروقت بلا رہتا تھا، اور اگر اس کی سٹی گم جائے تو وہ بلا کسی کو بھی مار دیتا تھا۔ لیکن صحرا کی دھوپ نے اس کو نڈھال کردیا تھا۔ اب وہ بلے کو سر پر رکھتا، جو سائے کا کام کرتا تھا۔

چوتھے افیمچی کو سب نوری بابا کہتے تھے۔ معلوم نہیں کیوں، شکل سے انتہائی شاطر طبعیت کا مالک تھا اور کم گو بھی۔ پہلی نظر میں افیمچی ہونے کا گمان بھی محال تھا۔ لمبا قد اور صاف چہرہ مانو ابھی کشمیر کی کسی وادی سے آیا ہو۔ چہرے پر گرمی اور تپش کے کوئی اثرات نظر نہیں آتے تھے۔

چاروں افیمچیوں نے اپنا رُخ مسجد کی طرف کیا اور اس طرف چل پڑے۔ مسجد کے پاس پہنچے تو سب اس خیال میں پڑگئے کہ اب اس مسجد کو دھوپ سے کیسے بچائیں۔ آپس میں پارلیمانی مشاورت شروع ہوئی، پھر گالی گلوچ، اس کے بعد بات ہاتھا پائی تک جاپہنچی۔

"ہم سورج کو آخری وارننگ (warning) دے رہے ہیں، اس زمین سے ہٹ جاو، میں کہتا ہوں اس زمین سے ہٹ جا، ورنہ اپنے انجام کیلیے تیار رہ"، زید نے بے انتہا غصے سے سورج کی طرف دیکھتے ہوئے کہا۔ اس کی ٹوپی بھی سر سے گرگئی۔
"آخری وارننگ ہے، ورنہ اپنے شاہینوں کو بھیجتا ہوں تیرے پاس"، ٹوپی اٹھاتے ہوئے، زید زور سے بولا۔

"ابے سورج ۹۰ منٹ میں ہٹ جا! صرف ۹۰ منٹ! میرے ایک بلے سے دو سورج آوٹ ہوجاتے ہیں۔ تُو تو صرف لیمو جتنا ہے۔ میرا بلا دیکھ اور اپنا قدر۔"، عمران نے بلا سورج کے برابر رکھتے ہوئے کہا۔

"تیرے بلے کا مقابلہ میرا شاہین کرے گا"، زید نے مسکین آیاز کی طرف آشارہ کرتے ہوئے کہا۔

"تیرا شاہین؟!، یہ تو میرا سونامی ہے"، عمران بلا ہلاتے ہوئے بولا۔

"دیکھو عمران، ہم آپ کو بھی وارننگ دے رہے ہیں، ان شاہینوں کو آیندہ سونامی مت کہنا، ہم تمھیں بھی نیست و نابود کردیں گے"، زید نے یہ جملہ ایک سانس ہی میں بولا۔

"یہ میرا سونامی ہے!!!!"، عمران نے بولتے ہوئے بلا زید کی طرف دے مارا، لیکن زید نے جلدی سے بائیں جانب چھلانگ مار لی۔ بلا لگا بھی تو مسکین آیاز کی دائیں ٹانگ پر جو پہلے سے خراب تھی۔

آیاز درد کی شدد سے چیخ پڑا۔ بچارا بہت معصوم تھا۔ تھوڑی سی افیم کے لیے عمران اور زید کی لڑائی میں چوٹ کھاتا۔ زید آیاز کو ایک جنگلی پرندے سے تشبیہ دیتا، جبکہ عمران آیار کو قاتل اور سمندری عذاب یعنی سونامی سے ملاتا۔ حقیقت یہ تھی کہ آیاز افیم کھا کھا کر اتنا کمزور ہوگیا تھا کہ وہ باآسانی فریب کھا جاتا۔ اور فریب کھانے کے سوا اس کے پاس تھا کیا؟ صرف افیم، اور افیم کے مالک بھی زید، عمران اور نوری بابا تھے۔ اس غریب کی کیا اوقات کہ خود افیم خرید کر چکھ سکے۔ بچارے آیاز پر بہت افسوس ہوتا تھا، افیم نہ ہونے کو وجہ سے خودسوزی بھی کرتا اور کبھی کبھی خودکُشی کی کوشش بھی، لیکن اس کی خودکُشی کی کوشش کو عمران اور زید کی افیم ناکام بنادیتی۔ فارسی کی مشہور کہاوت ہے، چہل سال عمرِ عزیزت گزشت، لیکن مزاجِ طفلی از حال طفلی نگشت' (یعنی کہ زندگی کہ چالیس سال تو گزر گئے لیکن وہ پرانی بچوں والی عادت نہیں گئی)۔ آیاز افیم کھانے کا عادی ہوچکا تھا، یہ عادت چہل ہزار سال میں بھی چلی جائے تو کمال ہوگا۔

بہرحال، زید و عمران آیاز کی طرف بھاگے اور اسے دلاسا دینے لگے۔ حسبِ معمول آیاز نے رونا ڈھونا بند کردیااور خوش ہوگیا۔ چلو جھوٹا دلاسا ہی صحیح!!

یہ سارا کھیل نوری بابا دور سے بیٹھا دیکھ رہا تھا۔ معلوم نہیں اس کو افیم کی عادت کس نے لگا دی، یہ بھی ہوسکتا ہے کہ ساروں کو افیم کی عادت اس ہی نے لگائی ہو۔ جب افیمچیوں کے جذبات کچھ ٹھنڈے ہوئے، تو پھر نوری بابا کھڑا ہوا۔

"بھائیوں، ہم یہاں مسجد سے دھوپ ہٹانے کے لیے آئے تھے، لیکن تم لوگ تو آپس میں ہی لڑپڑے"، یہ جلمہ نوری بابا کا تکیہ کلام تھا، کہا جاتا ہے کہ تین نسلوں سے یہ جملہ معمولی معمولی رّد و بدل کے ساتھ ایسے ہی ادا کیا جارہا ہے۔

"اب اس فقیر کی بھی سنو"، اُس نے سنجیدگی کے ساتھ کہا۔ "عمران صحیح کہتا ہے، یہ دھوپ ۹۰ منٹ میں ہٹ سکتی ہے۔ ابھی ایک بج رہا ہے، لیکن ڈھائی بجے تک یہ مسئلہ حل ہوسکتا ہے، ہمیں صرف اس مسجد کو دھکا دینا ہے، اور یہ مسجد سائے میں چلی جائے گی۔ وہ دیکھو! وہاں ایک درخت ہے"، نوری بابا نے درخت کی طرف اشارہ کرتے ہوئے بولا۔

"ہاں نوری! تیرا خیال بہت اچھا ہے۔ ہم سب مل کر اس مسجد کو دھکا لگاتے ہیں تاکہ یہ مسجد درخت کے نیچے آجائے"، عمران نے زید کی طرف دیکھتے ہوئے بولا۔

"صحیح ہے بھائیوں، میں درخت کے پاس جاتا ہوں، اور جیسے جیسے مسجد درخت کے قریب آتی رہے گی، میں تم کو بتاتا رہوں گا"، یہ کہتے ہوئے نوری بابا درخت کے سائے میں جابیٹھا، جبکہ عمران، زید اور آیاز نے دھکا دینا شروع کردیا۔

"زور لگا کر عالٰی شاہ، زور لگا کر عالٰی شاہ، زور لگا کر عالٰی شاہ"، نوری بابا نعرے لگانے لگا۔

جیسے جیسے سورج نیچے ہوتا گیا، درخت کا سایہ لمبا ہوتا چلا گیا، مانو جیسے مسجد دھکے کی وجہ سے سائے میں جارہی ہو۔ ایک گھنٹا گزرا، پھر دو گھنٹے، پھر جب چار بجے تو آیاز بول پڑا، "یہ مسجد سائے میں کب آئے گی؟"

اس پر زید نے جواباً کہا، "احمق! تو میرا شاہین ہے، تیرے سامنے جہاں اور بھی ہیں۔ صرف دو تین گھنٹے دھکا لگانے میں تیری جان نکل گئی؟"۔ پھر فرمایا، "میں نوری کے پاس جارہا ہوں، اس کا حال معلوم کرنے، ابھی واپس آتا ہوں۔" یہ کہتے ہوئے وہ چل نکلا۔

ابھی آدھا گھنٹا بھی نہ گزرا ہوگا کہ عمران بول پڑا، "میں زید کو دیکھ کر آتا ہوں، دروغ گو ہے!" اس پر آیاز نے بولا، "عمران کچھ پانی لیتے آنا، میرا پانی ختم ہوگیا ہے۔" عمران نے گھورتے ہوئے دیکھا اور بولا، "پانی ختم ہو گیا ہے؟ احمق، تم تو سونامی ہو، تم تو خود ہی پانی ہو، پانی پانی کرگئی مجھ کو تیری یہ بات۔"، یہ جملہ کہتا ہوا عمران بھی نوری بابا کے پاس چلا گیا۔

اب شاید چھ بج چکے تھے اور اندھیرا ہونے کو تھا۔ مسجد خود بخود سائے میں آگئی تھی۔ آیاز کی حالت ایسی ہوگئی تھی، جیسے وہ چند لمحوں میں مر جائے گا، لیکن پھر نوری بابا نے آیاز کو کچھ پانی دے دیا اور اسکی جان میں جان آئی۔ اس کامیابی پر عمران اور زید ایسے خوش ہورہے تھے جیسے یہ ان ہی کی کاوش کا نتیجہ ہو، حالا کہ وہ تو دوگھنٹے بعد ہی بھاگ نکلے تھے۔ منزل انھیں ملی جو شریک سفر نہ تھے۔

"شاباش میرے شاہین"، "شاباش میرے سونامی"، کے نعرے آیاز کو عطا کئے جارہے تھے۔ نوری بابا، حسبِ معمول پھر تماشہ دیکھنے لگا، اور قریب موجود نخلستان میں چلا گیا۔ جب آیاز دھکا دے رہا تھا، تو زید اور عمران اس ہی نخلستان میں آرام کررہے تھے۔ معلوم نہیں دماغ میں نوری کیا سوچ رہا ہو۔ شاید وہ یہ سوچ رہا ہو کہ تاریک زمین پر تاریکی سے بننے والے سائے اور حقیقی سائے میں کیا فرق ہوتا ہے۔ جب کوئی چیز تاریکی کی وجہ سے اندھیرے میں چلی جائے پھر وہ روشنی فراہم نہیں کرسکتی۔ اندھیری زمین پر ہر چیز اندھیری ہوتی ہے، تاریکی میں روشنی کُجا حکمت کُجا!

لیکن کیا نوری یہ سب کچھ سوچ سکتا ہے؟ وہ تو افیمچی ہے؟ کیا واقعی وہ افیم چہ ہے؟! میرے خیال میں واحد افیمچی آیاز ہے، باقی صرف افیمچی ہونے کا بہانہ کررہے ہیں۔۔۔



حواشی
>نوری بابا کا استعارہ جنرل ضیاء اور تمام عوامی حکومتوں پر قبضہ کرنے والے جنرلوں کے لیے استعمال کیا گیا ہے۔
>آیاز پاکستان کے عوام ہے۔
>مسجد کا استعارہ کوہستان کے اس فتویٰ کے لیے ہے۔