By Sajjad Shaukat
Terrorism is the mother of all evils and root cause of Muslims’ sufferings in general and Pakistan in Particular.
Terrorists have maligned the name of Islam to have acceptability to their inhuman actions with a view to generating semblance of legitimacy.
Suicide bombers are mostly juveniles, oblivious of the fact that suicide is ‘HARAM’ (Illegitimate) in Islam. Allah (God) says, kill not yourselves. Surely Allah is merciful…and cast not yourselves into ruin with your own hands. Suicide bombers are not only killing themselves, but are also killing innocent human beings.
While taking note of terrorists’ suicide attacks in Middle East and Pakistan, Saudi Arabia’s grand mufti (Mufti-e-Azam),Sheikh Abdul Aziz bin Abdullah al-Sheikh issued a Fatwa (Religious verdict), asserting that suicide attacks are illegal and illegitimate (HARAM).” He explained, “Such acts fall under the category of crime and suicide bombers or terrorists represent an adversary of Islam and enemy of Muslims…they commit crimes against humanity, while misguiding other Muslims.” Denouncing terrorism as un-Islamic, he pointed out that terrorists’ activities are part of a conspiracy to defame Islam and destroy Muslims.
However, in the recent years, Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) and its affiliated banned outfits conducted many terror-activities in Pakistan like suicide attacks, ruthless beheadings of tribesmen, assaults on security personnel and prominent figures including Shias, Ahmadis, Sufis, Christians and Sikhs. Contrary to the teachings on the importance of gaining education and knowledge in Islam, these terrorists have destroyed and torched more than 1,000 schools and mosques in Pakistan. They also attacked the female teachers in order to deny education to girls. Besides, terror-attacks in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, FATA, Balochistan and Karachi are part of the scheme to create chaotic situation in the country. Indian Consulates in Afghanistan are also playing a very negative role in supporting TTP and Baloch separatists.
In this respect, choosing Pakistani venue for targeting innocent public by a suicide attack at Wagha border in Lahore, on November 2, 2014, while flag ceremony was being conducted on both sides of the border is testament to TTP’s terrorists’ hidden agenda and allegiance to the enemies of Pakistan. Besides, India is also encouraging TTP factions showing allegiance for DAISH ISIS (Islamic State in Iraq and Syria), to get united.
Terrorism has caused massive damage to the prosperity of Pakistan during last 14 years. In this context, the Parliamentary Secretary for Interior, Maryam Aurangzeb informed the National Assembly on December 19, 2014, “Extremist groups have been active throughout the country with their own ideology…Pakistan which has been major victim of terrorism has suffered a loss of almost 80 billion dollars including loss of 50,000 precious lives of civilians and security agencies…huge collateral damage during the decade long war against terrorism.”
Undoubtedly, in our country, the victims of terror attacks and suicide bombings have been innocent men, women and children. Regrettably, those militant entities like TTP, which try to justify terrorism and suicide bombings in the name of Islam, are misguiding the people, while these brutal acts are clearly against the teachings of Islam.
From time to time, while condemning the militants’ inhuman activities as undemocratic and un-Islamic practices, Pakistan’s various Ulema (Islamic scholars) have clarified in their joint fatwa, and separate statements that “killing of innocent people, target killings and suicide bombings including sectarianism are against the spirit of Islam…the terrorists’ self-adopted interpretation of Islam was nothing, but ignorance and digression from the actual teachings of the religion.” They explained, “Islam does not forbid women’s education.”
While, Islam is a religion of universal application, as it emphasizes peace, democracy, moderation and human rights including tolerance of political groups, religious communities and sects which are in minority in a country. It also permits periodic reinterpretation of Islamic teachings which is called Ijtihad.
The Constitution of 1973 which was unanimously adopted, clearly states that Pakistan is basically a democracy guided by the Islamic principles and values—no law would be made contrary to Quran and Sunnah.
Notably, the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) in his sermon at Hajjatul Wida issued directions for protection of life, property and dignity of the whole mankind. The sermon became a charter of democracy which was included in the constitutions of the western elected governments in one way or the other.
In fact, Islam and democracy have co-relationship with each other. Diversified people and Ulema participate in the system of representatives, which does not exclude or discriminate any one on basis of caste, creed and sect. It does not confine religion to mosque.
Islam considers killing one innocent person equal to murdering the entire humanity, while Jihad is a sacred obligation, but its real spirit needs to be understood clearly, as killing innocent women and children is not Jihad. By playing in the hands of anti-Pakistan foreign countries, especially Indian secret agency RAW, the TTP and its banned affiliated groups are defaming Islam.
Every one knows that terrorism caused political instability, economic crisis, social strife and sectarian divide in Pakistan. And, terrorists are foreign-paid killers, having foreign agenda, while, Islam condemns terrorism in any form.
it is mentionable that Pakistan’s Armed Forces have almost defeated the ferocious terrorists, particularly of the TTP by clearing the areas of North Waziristan Agency by military operation Zarb-e-Azb which has broken the backbone of the insurgents, and is rapidly been achieving its objectives. The operation has full support of the civil government, opposition parties and Ulema including all other segments of society and general masses who are united against terrorism. In this regard, DG, ISPR Directorate, Major-Gen. Asim Saleem Bajwa had stated, “Armed forces of Pakistan have launched the operation against terrorists…who had been waging a war against the state of Pakistan by disrupting our national life in all its dimensions…with the support of the entire nation, these enemies will be denied space across the country.”
Optimistically speaking, Pakistan can soon be on the road to prosperity, a secure country to invest, a peaceful place for tourists to visit, provided the terrorism which is mother of evils and sufferings is eliminated from its roots.
Sajjad Shaukat writes on international affairs and is author of the book: US vs Islamic Militants, Invisible Balance of Power: Dangerous Shift in International Relations