A session was held in British House of Commons on 25th February 2012 where Hazara and Shia Genocide was discussed with Lord Eric Avebury. The session was called by Parliamentary Committee of Human Rights which is chaired by Lord Eric Averbury himself. The session lasted for nearly 2 hours and was attended by members and leaders of Shia community, Hazara Shia community, Sunni community, legal community and representatives from some political parties, journalists and human rights activists.
I was invited to speak on a special talkshow on Hidayat TV focused on Shia Genocide in Pakistan hosted by Tehsin Haider. Hidayat TV is a Birmingham based satellite TV channel. Others who spoke on the show include Raza Rumi, Ali Abbas Zaidi and Haider Zaman Qureshi of PPP. The recording of the program can be watched below and I highly recommend to circulate this to English speaking audience specially the overseas Pakistanis as this can serve as a good tool for campaigning on Shia Genocide, considering there is little on the issue in English talk shows.
For decades Shia Muslims have been killed in Pakistan and the issue has either been pushed under the carpet or obfuscated using blanket terms such as ‘sectarian violence’. Both the print and the electronic media have on purpose hidden the Shia identity of the victims. The victims are often reported as mere ‘afraad’ [persons] randomly killed, not targeted for their faith.
Most Pakistanis have been silent on the issue, not uttering a word as if speaking for the Shia will make them a Shia. However, they do have time and energy to protest for Palestinians, Burmese or Syrians. The civil society and activists on social media, or otherwise, hesitate to use the word Shia – apparently they condemn the bloodshed but are shy of using the word Shia, like the mainstream media. This does not help. This is rather part of the problem.
The Shia of Pakistan exemplify resilience and a peaceful non-violent struggle for defense of their rights. The year 2012 saw country wide peaceful protests by Shia community spread across cities, towns and villages. Similar protests were held across the world spread from Australia to the EU and as far as American and Canada. Hundreds of people have protested peacefully in Washington, NYC, Toronto, Vancouver, Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Canada, London, Kargil in Indian Kashmir, Lucknow and elsewhere. In Pakistan, over a 100,000 Shia protested for 8 days at Parliament House Islamabad in April 2012 and a same number protested for 39 hours in Karachi. Similar protests were held in cities and towns of all provinces of Pakistan.
** This post was originally published on FASTRising Official blog on March, 19th, 2009. **
The short version, by our in-house wit: An idea whose time has come cannot be contained – nor container-ed.
While the nation celebrates and the most pessimistic activists are in wait-and-see mode till the 22nd of March, it behooves us to do a tally.
At the national level, a large number of people have finally seen a practical demonstration of the effectiveness of popular power in a democratic setup – however young and weak our …
The Supreme Court (read Dogar Court) of Pakistan, after a prolonged hearing of the case of electoral eligibility of the Sharif brothers, had declared them ineligible for contesting the elections (which were held back in February 2008 ). This result, thus, disqualifies Shahbaz Sharif as the MPA and consequently the CM of Punjab – Pakistan’s largest and politically most influential province.
In a surprising move, the President of Pakistan, Asif Ali Zardari, imposed Emergency in the province and issued orders for governor rule under his right-hand-man Salman Taseer who had earlier …
Following is an email from Aitzaz Ahsan, leader of the Lawyer’s movement where he clarifies his position, his relation with the movement and his reasoning.
Aitzaz Ahsan : right or wrong ?
My dear Samad,
I opened your mail yesterday and was deeply pained by it and by its tenor.
Of late there is a veritable campaign being fostered on the net and many mails are targeting the leadership of the Lawyers Movement. There is no doubt that most of the criticism is pointed at me but the beauty of …
Samad Khurram, Harvard student and an active SAC member refuses to receive award from US Ambassador in protest against killings of Pakistani people.
IJT a.k.a Jamiat, the student wing of JI, attacked the pro-Judiciary camp setup by SAC and FASTRising at Nasir bagh, Lahore for the promotion of the Long march. Detailed report available here.
The organizers of the camp were harassed, beaten up and forced to move away. The attackers torn off the posters and flex banenrs at the camp pressurizing those at the camp to leave immediately. Ahmed Saleemi, one of the SAC members was beaten up while I was forced to move away when I tried to reach the camp.
The camp …
Lawyer’s Coordination Committee and Lahore Bar Association announced the schedule of the long march for the restoration of Judiciary.
June 5 : Joint rally from Aiwan-e-Adal, Lahore to Faisal Chowk
June 6: Joint protest rally by doctors, professionals, teachers/professors, students, civil society, lawyers, scholars and the political parties to start at Data Darbar after the Jumma prayers and head to Nasir Bagh, Lahore.
June 7: Caravan for Restoration of Judiciary, consisting of 40 cars will tour around the Lahore city for mobilization and awareness.
June 8: Protest for restoration of Judiciary by the civil …
WHAT Promotional pro-judiciary camp
WHERE Press Club
WHEN May 31 – All-day event – 9 to 6 PM.
1. Stickering the numerous public transport (and any willing private) vehicles that pass by
2. Distributing flyers to commuters
3. Making a real noise with creative slogans
4. Mushaira / qawwaali
5. Registering people for the Long March
6. Planning future activities
The call is from YPL, IPSS & FASTRising.