Pakhtuns
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Abdul Rahim|

Why does Punjab look down on the rest of the provinces? Is it natural or due to Punjab’s aristocratic behavior? Why do Baloch separatists have a special hatred for Punjab even more than over-all Pakistan?

The answer is we have never tried to recognize the depth of the critical issues and sensitivities that have stood Pakistan on the brink of controversies between its provinces. Neither the center nor the national leadership has done anything in this regard.

The grievances of Pakhtuns about Punjab are just and right to a great extent. And Punjab is neither trying to end nor is it really giving focus. As a result, almost 80% Pakhtun youth holds feelings of hatred for Punjab. Ignoring this fact might prove as threatening and all this must come to an end to secure a prosperous and integrated Pakistan.

read more: Punjab clarifies its position on racism against Pakhtuns

Pakistan is a multi-ethnic, multi-lingual and multi-cultural Federation which needs seriousness and sensitiveness to avoid any ethnic hatred and counter-opposition among provinces on linguistic basis. Biasness and one-sidedness will lead us nowhere.

Since the demise of the Quaid in April 1948 and tragic assassination of Liaqat Ali Khan in October 1951, Pakistan is facing linguistic-based hatred due to the ‘biased’ role of the authoritative Punjab rulers.

Read more: No Work on CPEC’s Western Route? This is propaganda: Chief Secretary Balochistan

The grievances of Pashtuns about Punjab are just and right to a great extent. Almost 80% Pashtun youth holds feelings of hatred for Punjab.

The just demands and grievances of deprived provinces and chauvinist security designs of the Punjab-police towards the Punjab-based Pashtun businessmen and residents are seriously fueling fire to anti-Punjab sentiments which is a now once again becoming a vibrant threat to national integrity.

One may accept or reject but the Pashtuns are in fact facing security harassment in Punjab from the past two weeks which needs attention and serious-focus. Our foolishness has already stamped a black-sign on our foreheads in form of the fall of Dhaka back in December, 1971.

The slow attitude of the Central government has already added more issues to the internal security front. The unclear and one-sided approach of the Federal government towards understanding the real essence of problems is drawing a line of demarcation between them a Punjab based government and other provinces.

There is need for collective and mutually agreed action against the poisoning elements who are spreading turmoil between the two parties, Punjabis and the Pakhtuns.

read more: Pakistan Army begins: ‘Operation Radd-ul-Fasaad’ all across Pakistan

If we agree that Mahmood Khan Ackakzai and Asfandyar Wali are naturally anti-Punjab politicians and have always rooted for the Pahstuns, what about Imran khan’s speech where he said that; “CM, Perviz Khattak must take the issue of harassing Pashtuns in Sindh and Punjab?” 

Pakistan is already facing political instabilities. Raad-ul-Fasaad, in context of harassing Pakhtuns in the name of Afghans, will place a corner stone in further political controversies.

And what about the tweet of Asad Umer, where he questioned, if terrorism was being eradicated or the country being split? “ap log deshadgardi khatam kr rahey ho ya mulk taqseem kr rahey ho? Main bi Pakhtoon hun.”

In words of the opposition Leader Khursheed Shah; targeting one ethnic-group is dangerous for Federation.

The truth, as I see it, is that we as a nation have not learnt from the annoyance of Baloch brothers who were once patriots but now ‘traitors’. Bengalis have been labelled as ungrateful, Hazaras as stereotyped or”kaffirs”, and now, the Pashtuns are being declared as terrorists. The government must do what it can, to ensure the integrity of the nation.

Read more: Lahore Bleeds: Is India Taking Revenge?

Pakistan is already facing political instabilities. Raad-ul-Fasaad, in context of harassing Pakhtuns in the name of Afghans, will place a corner stone in further political controversies. Controversies over CPEC routes and imperialist mind-set of the center represent our reality on how mature of a country we are. Current actions and reactions on the security situation will only add fuel to the fire.

The rising significance of Pakistan in the changing global politics, the initiation of OBOR (One Belt, One Road) and game-changer project of CPEC is pinching the minds of the hostile states. They will play with these rising controversies to sabotage Pakistan’s interest, both at regional and global level.

The Central government should take notice of the rising grievances against Pakhtuns. An example of love and cooperation for other provinces must be set, in order to internally stabilize Pakistan. Pakhtuns are patriots and guardians of Pakistan. Wounds and rounds of bullets will take away their existing enthusiasm for unity and cooperation. Which is exactly what Pakistan’s enemies want.

Abdul Rahim is currently pursuing M. Phil degree with a focus on Talibanization and Imperialist Designs in 21st Century at International Islamic University, Islamabad. He tweets at Rahim_realist and his email is abdul.mseng346@iiu.edu.pk. The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect Global Village Space’s editorial policy.

 

Abdul Rahim has completed his M. Phil degree with a focus on foreign policies, regional security, and strategic affairs at International Islamic University, Islamabad.

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