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Speakers call for compiling textbooks free of hate material

Speakers call for compiling textbooks free of hate material

PESHAWAR: Speakers at the launch of a study report have asked the government to expurgate hate stuff from the textbooks and compile lessons to create harmony and brotherhood among followers of different religions to overcome polarisation in the society.

The ‘study report on ethics book’ was launched at a ceremony held at a local hotel here on Friday. South Asia Partnership Pakistan (SAP-PK), which has compiled the report on religious freedom and minority rights, organised the event.

The speakers included All Pakistan Hindu Rights Movement chairman Haroon Sarab Diyal, regional head of SAP KP and tribal region Sikander Zaman, Hashim Raza advocate, Bishan Lal, journalist Shamim Shahid, and SAP coordinator Nusrat Ara, while a number of members from non-Muslim communities and lawyers participated in the event.

Speakers threw light on the significance of the ‘ethics book’, saying that it would help reduce the gap among the people of different religions.

Mr Raza said that Islamiyat was not compulsory for the children of minorities and therefore the subject of ethics was to be taught to them, but such books were not available in the market.

He said that teaching of subjects such as ethics could play an important role in reducing polarisation in the society.

Mr Diyal said that minorities were being ignored on every platform. He said that there were no differences among the Muslim and non-Muslim communities, but some elements had been creating differences among them for their own benefits.

He emphasized on the non-Muslim Pakistanis, particularly those belonging to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, to raise voice and demand their basic rights in the light of Islam and Constitution of the country by holding seminars and other activities.

Commenting on the bill on minority rights’ commission, Mr Zaman said that minorities were also part of this soil, but there were some legal impediments in the way of resolution of their problems, which conveyed a negative message to the world.

He said that after several seminars and workshops with provincial lawmakers, government representatives and civil society activists, the draft bill was finalised and it was now with the government for tabling it in the provincial assembly.

He urged the elected representatives to support the bill.

Published in Dawn, October 31st, 2015

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