While we persecute you
And seek help with patience and Prayer; and this indeed is hard except for the humble in spirit, Who know for certain that they will meet their Lord, and that to Him will they return. (Al Quran 2:46-47)
Source: The Daily Times
By Aisha Fayyazi Sarwari
Persecution has existed since antiquity. You have to, however, be a special kind of unfortunate to be persecuted by Muslims. There will be no mercy. There will be no hope. No one in power will stand up for you, attempt to protect you or even throw your way two words of consolation. A caravan will be led by the vocal extremists and many silently approving groups across the socio-economic strata will walk with it, chin up. The only outrage there will be is going to be from your own community, and that too, measured — you cannot appear to be a formidable force or you will stroke the fires of hate to an extent that you will be annihilated. No one wants that, not even your enemies who want to instead poison you slowly with lethal fear, hunting you and eventually clenching the grey-wolf-like jaws on your jugular — your best will go first.
It is savagery at its worst, with everyone as an accomplice because there is a disagreement about your religious beliefs, under which many are unsure what kind of punishment is required. Yet there is no disagreement about random extremists acting out the judge, jury and executioner roles. Luckily for the rest of the world, John Locke philosophised the separation of church and state: a rather simple concept but one that prevents not just the denial of civil rights on the basis of religion but also prevents religious persecution.
From among you was a man who loved the Pakistani cricket team and was crazy about the city of Lahore. He was a cardiologist, had three sons and lived and worked in the world that John Locke helped into law. This man decided that he wanted to come back to his country and serve at a hospital where thousands are treated for free in a town called Chenab Nagar. The place was previously called Rabwah.
He was unaware that those who consider themselves the truest of believers had been distributing posters that declared treatment from this hospital was forbidden. Would knowing this stop him? We do not know. On May 26, 2014, he went with his two-year-old son and wife to a nearby graveyard where he paid respects to his parents who had passed away. In this same graveyard you buried Pakistan’s greatest mind, a Nobel laureate, Dr Abdus Salam. His grave, just like others in the graveyard, lies desecrated and the Islamic proclamations ashed-out by the authorities.