‘The Ramazan of 1947 and now’Archive
APROPOS Rafia Zakaria’s article ‘Ramazan of 1947and now”(July 15). The Ramazan of 1947 was also hot and humid. However, in the Ramazan of 2015 more than 1,300 people died because of sizzling temperatures and no electricity and water.
Shouldn’t be we ashamed that even after 68 years of independence we are unable to provide electricity and water to our people? Shouldn’t we be ashamed that more than half of our population has no access to potable water and sanitation? Shouldn’t we be ashamed that millions of our children don’t go to schools and most of the schools in rural areas are without teachers, roofs, furniture, potable water and toilets? Shouldn’t we be ashamed that most of our people have no access to healthcare?
The Quaid wanted Pakistan to be a secular state. In his famous speech to the Constituent Assembly on August 11, 1947, he said: “You are free, free to go to your temples, you are free to go to your mosques or to any other places of worship in this state of Pakistan. You may belong to any religion or caste or creed that has nothing to do with the business of the state....we are starting in the days when there is no discrimination, no distinction between one caste or creed and another. We are starting with this fundamental principle that we are all citizens and equal citizens of one state.”
In the Ramazan of 2015, we are not free and do not feel safe in going to our places of worship. Religion has become the business of the state. We discriminate on the basis of religion. We have made Pakistan a theocratic state. Non-Muslims do not enjoy the same rights and privileges and cannot play their rightful part in the affairs of Pakistan.
It is a shame that right after the Quaid’s death, we forgot his teachings.
Dr Khurrum Fiazuddin
Published in Dawn, July 24th, 2015
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