A case of distress

By Confounder: Citizen Awareness Program


Shiite News Correspondent reported that Dr Babar Ali was made target in Hassan Abdal, a historic town in district Attock of Punjab province >> Here: http://www.shiitenews.com/index.php/pakistan/9305-shia-doctor-embraced-martyrdom-due-to-yazidi-terrorist-firing-in-hassan-abdal – He was a volunteer of the Imam Bargah as well. He was the assistant DHO (district health officer) and head of the anti-Polio campaign in Hasanabdal, he was shot dead by “unknown assailants” as he drove out of his hospital at night. It was surprising to not see any mainstream media outlet report on this significant development. Shia community in Pakistan has repeatedly being attacked and targeted for mere sectarian rivalry, producing fatal results for the national stability and security.  Nonetheless, it is not a sectarian problem alone, but a problem which entails horrific consequences if essential measures are not taken. Observing gravity of the situation, we must know that shia community is highly essential for Pakistan:

1)      Shia community of Pakistan cannot be compared to a relatively smaller Ahmediyya community or hindu community of Pakistan, since shia community is an integral part of Pakistan, and targeted violence against them is likely to lash back with a massive shia brain drain. Shia members of the society hold positions of significant status in Pakistan, and are rendering services of national importance in many areas crucial for the functioning of the state instituitions.

2)      Also, continuous targeted violence against shia community is likely to incite a defensive armed rebellion that could easily be greater than any violence Pakistan has faced before.

3)      Shia community of Pakistan is a peaceful community which has not associated itself with an anti-state or violent activity aimed at destabilizing Pakistani state.

4)      A thriving Shia community in Pakistan is a guarantor of healthy foreign relations with shia-majority countries and countries that inhabit a large percentage of shia-minority.


Although Pakistan has been a victim of foreign-funded proxy war, while involvement of international agencies like that of CIA in using sunnis against shias and vice versa is known, but realities that are hard to swallow cannot be overlooked – “As they say: In order to solve a problem, the first step is to recognize that a problem exists”. In this case, the problem in question is very much internal compared to the external factors involved. Pakistan’s jihadists, as were created by the west, have been the core issue from where the problem of sectarianism emanates. Although, jihadists at some point have been Pakistan’s support in its quest for regional and national security alongside USA and western nations, the time has proven the “good” jihadists have eventually turned into “bad” jihadists. The roots of jihadism in Pakistan have extended into a long spell of irrelevant story-telling, fabricated and interpolated by conspirators and aspirants with vested interests. There are mainly two possibilities in this scenario:


1)      Pakistani security forces must call an end to the self-created demarcation between “good” jihadists and “bad” jihadists – good being considered the one endorsing the issues of the national significance like Kashmir and Afghanistan a part of their own agenda. Since the similarities of interest and convergence of ideals between the two kinds are numerous, this makes it completely impossible to decide allegiance to any one of them.  Even if the ones challenging writ of the state or the constitution are exterminated, rest of them would still remain a huge obstacle in the way of national progress and social development. Pakistan naturally consider Afghanistan a great threat to its security mainly after US troops withdraw from that country, but there are many policy initiatives that Pakistan could apply in place of “good” jihadist option, since the latter only limit Pakistan’s foreign policy vision alongside long term national interest.


2)      Although the above theory might be unacceptable to few people who believe it is an exaggeration about the connection between Taliban (those jihadist who are foreign-funded for directly fighting against the state) and the ones who are on a killing spree against the shia community. Even If the two are considered as two different entities, they are both like two sides of a same coin. They are equally fatal for Pakistan, in fact the sectarian violence is a greater evil as the culprits in this case are internally accepted and are still not widely viewed as enemies. Therefore, if Pakistan does not formulate an alternate policy for tackling future challenges instead of relying on vicious jihadism, especially for those in Afghanistan there are chances of escalation in sectarian violence, with or without the involvement of foreign hand.


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