During the abduction of the bloggers, a dominant narrative built by certain ‘liberal’ commentators was that instead of kidnapping the said persons, the state should have filed cases against them on blasphemy charges and hanged them if found guilty as well. Even when Mashal Khan was murdered, there were people apologising for the murderers presenting the ‘inaptitude’ of the state institutions in dealing with the ‘blasphemers’ that prompted the mobs to take matters into their hands.
For such people, there is a striking passage in Martyn Whittock’ book ‘A Brief History of the Third Reich’ describing how Hitler always built his argument for a demonic law.
Hitler, in a rare speech to the Reichstag, justified the new laws with the bizarre assertion that they had been prompted by provocative behaviour by Jews. The regulations, he suggested, were necessary in order to stop outraged Aryan Germans from taking law into their own hands. The laws, he claimed, were designed to contain ‘a problem’ and to create a basis from which Germans could have a ‘tolerable relationship with the Jews’. If this legal strategy failed, he threatened, it would be necessary to refer the matter to the Nazi Party ‘for final solution’. It was typical of the way in which Hitler presented controversial policy. First, fictional outrages were presented; these were the contrasted with the pressing need to defend German people; finally, destructive threats were made against those who were the objects of these fictional accusations.
The deposed Pakistani Prime Minister, Nawaz Sharif, had called for an alternate narrative from the religious scholars of the country in one of his speeches at a renowned Lahore seminary earlier this year. Mufti Muneeb ur-Rehman, one of the chief clerics of the country and also the chairman of the moon-sighting committee, lashed out at the PM in a detailed column for Daily Dunya explaining how the narrative was already there but the state was unable to carry it out by avoiding to punish the perpetrators of blasphemy.
A new political class is being propped up in Pakistan. Lt. Gen. (r) Amjad Shoaib had claimed in an interview to Channel24 last year that the army wanted to integrate the ‘reconcilable extremists’ in national mainstream by bringing them into politics. We were told that the government gave the suggestion put forward by ISI a cold shoulder until the ‘Dawn Leaks’ surfaced and ultimately led to the removal of Nawaz Sharif from the PM’s office.
In the recent days, Jamaat ud-Daawa has launched its political party titled ‘Milli Muslim League’ and announced to contest election from NA-120, son of slain Sipah-e-Sahaba leader Azam Tariq, Muaviya Azam, has been released on the recommendation of Ahmed Ludhyanvi (both fourth schedule terrorists) and a banned ASWJ leader Ismail Darwesh staged an Independence Day rally in Peshawar with police protocol.
It seems that the state has started working on the agenda that Amjad Shoaib had hinted at. The bigots are being released, and being mainstreamed while the mainstream popular politicians are being sidelined through Articles 62 and 63 of the constitution. Let’s just hope that we don’t become a Nazi Germany with all these religious extremists and hardline takfeeris taking the front seat on the national political scene.