Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Why is Altaf Hussain afraid of Taliban? by Nadia Khan

MQM, formerly an ethnic group and now a secular political force is quite vocal against Taliban in Karachi in last few months. Altaf Hussain has issued number of warnings to Karachi residents and to highest govt authorities about it.

Most recent is when he was quoting famous Sufi saint of Sind, Shah Latif poetry in which he had pointed that, "the land of Sind could have problems from people of Qandahar, a place in Afghanistan." MQM London based founder is now attributing the Shah's poetry as a warning symbol against the people of Qandahar – Taliban presence in Karachi.

There are various factors based on that MQM feels threatened by Taliban in Karachi and over all Sind province:

1. Taliban was founded by Naseer ullah Babar, former interior minister in Benazir led PPP govt, who had devised most cruel strategy of his time – by killing MQM activists involved in heinous crimes without any judicial trial, through Police encounters. The reason he had presented was even more gruesome & worth noting, as "if I take them to court for judicial trial they would set free soon due to missing evidences." His draconian approach had made him the most ruthless minister of his time however he had cleansed Karachi from number of armed activists who had taken the city hostage like Khajji ground. Today, MQM feels that Taliban, if come over to Karachi, could follow the same approach while dealing with terrorists of Karachi & Hyderabad!

2. Taliban, though founded during Benazir era, are now engaged with PPP-led NWFP govt in setting up peace deal, and hence if they dominate Karachi, they could deal with PPP or ANP easily.

3. Taliban spokesperson, Muslim Khan, is an old ally of PPP and had lived larger span of his life in exile and now an active participant of its hardcore religious ideology.

4. Taliban could form a loose alliance with other religious-political parties active in Karachi or Hyderabad to take over the city. Fazlur Rahman religious schools influence is also visible in Karachi and interior Sind. He is an all time opportunist and could tilt towards Taliban, if find them in a power-sharing situation.

5. There are number of religious schools of Deubandi thoughts (Madrasas) in Karachi such as Jamia Binnoria in New Town & Site led by Mufti Naeem, Darul Uloom in Korangi led by Mufti Rafi & Taqi Usmanis, Jamia Farooqia in Shah Faisal colony led Maulana Saleem Ullah Khan & his sons – for all of them Taliban should have soft corner as all of them have favoured Afghan Jihad, during General Zia era, and many of the Taliban students have been graduated from these institutions directly or indirectly.

6. Maulana Sami ul Haq, of Aqura Khatak, has received the heroic welcome (like a bridegroom) from Taliban, when he visited Kabul during 2000, is also in line with Karachi-based Deubandi religious schools.

7. Another religious force, Jamat e Islami, though not getting popular votes in Karachi, but likely an alternative political & likeminded force, acceptable to Taliban, if they strike here in Sind after NWFP.

8. Barelvi faction is also a silent but a strong force in Karachi environment, represented by either Sunni Tehreek during Rabi ul Awal processions or Shah Turab ul Haq Qadri's group. Their almost all of the main leadership was killed during a religious procession few years back and MQM activist were prime suspects, or miscellaneous religious small groups such as Gulzar e Habib, could not be difficult segments for Deubandi religious forces like Taliban to form a loose association at govt level.

9. By looking at the teachings of Dawat e Islami (those who wear green turban), activists of Jamiet ulma e Pakistan (those who wears brown turban) and Tablighei Jamat's Makki and Madani mosques followers – all of them, beside few main differences, are all in favour of similar interpretation of Shariah - growing beard for men, observing veil for women, five times prayers in mosques and other basics tents of Islam. Such elements shall not stage confrontations with Taliban or any religious force that enforce Shariah directly, if they come in power in Karachi.

10. The heroic welcome of Umm e Hissan, wife of Maulana Abdul Aziz, administrator of Madrasha Hafsa & Lal Mosque, Islamabad, when she visited Karachi, has open the eyes of number of political activists including MQM in the city.

11. The rise of religious education among females is becoming a new phenomenon in Karachi. Schools like Madrash e Aysha in Gulistan e Juhar, a vicinity in Karachi, is meant for only girls where Quranic education including Hifz (memorization) is imparted free of charge. This religious seminary is run by a female who is direct descendent of one of the former Prime Minister of Pakistan, late Chaudhry Muhammad Ali and is close relative of former Senate Chairman and Law Minister in Nawaz Sharif's cabinet. This could help identify the elites in Karachi are turning themselves towards religion.

12. Other than such religious forces, when I visited Karachi last month, I have noticed every second man has grown beard, every third woman was observing veil and many of the young population, regardless of the sect they belong to or practice, were offering prayers in mosques quite religiously. All this tilt is pointing towards a new approach of rising Islamism among Karachi residents regardless of the fact that they have been forced towards secularism by a political party or its splinter groups in last two decades.

With above religious factors, silently active in Karachi environment, it is quite easily understood that MQM founding father is feeling threatened as these religious forces could get unified any moment by forming an alliance against corruption, lawlessness, and other street crimes in the city provided they have some support to counter the armed retaliation of MQM. Taliban could become a counter force!

Karachi residents are still vocal about the crimes in the city and business community members are sceptical about Bhattas (money collected by force from shop keepers & business men), skins or mobile snatching especially during eid days and pick-pocket activities by politically affiliated youngsters. MQM leadership shall not be held responsible for unit-level workers crime activities however this has paved the way for a bigger change at Sind level – right from the Chief Minister to Governor Levels, a need of a sincere political leadership!

The crown of Karachi might go to a new face soon!


UCB said...

Ms. Nadia Khan Wake up and smell the Chai.

Why MQM is being the only force in Karachi have been elected every election and ever since the inception of MQM forces and so called journalist like you never accepted the fact People of Karachi want MQM. MQM was not created by Newspapers or Media your cousin Imran Khan is the creator of your kind!!!!

It is very easy for MQM to collect monies like other politician where MQM people can apply for loans and not payback like other so called political forces in Pakistan.

You never mentioned anything about the development of Karachi you do enjoy driving on the roads and visiting beautiful parks around the jurisdictions of City Government.

Ms. Khan you seems to be an educated person just take off your prejudice glasses and look through naked eye you will see much better.



ibadrehman said...

It is very unfortunate to see our educated class getting caught by the fanatic prpoganda. Taliban and Al-Qaeda are one and the same and whoever thinks they are different, be ready to live in a 18th century world, ask your sisters and daughters to start living a animal like life. I'm from Karachi and i know the value of being an educated and civilized instead of ignorant and prejudice. Karachi is the last line of defence for the educated moderate and enlightened people and we'll keep the city the same way come what may.
I. Rehman
Virginia, USA

Dr. Nadia Khan said...

Dear Ajaz, like you and others, I am also not in favour of Taliban. However we have to look at the facts, which I tried presenting here in a systematic order.

This doesn't mean that Taliban is a good force.

Unknown said...

Persuing career in professional jounalism is outstanding but following the steps of "LEEFAFFA JOURNALISM" is dangerous.
Your article speaks more of illusions and imaginations and unfortunately drifting away from the truth.
Karachi being the face of Pakistan and ofcourse last line of defence to the integrity and sovereignty will be defended by the moderate forces at all times.
Father of the Nation Quaid-E-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah said in an interview to Reuters in 1946;
“Pakistan would not be a Theocracy. It would be a modern democratic state with sovereignty resting with the people, and the members of the new nation having equal rights of citizenship regardless of their religion, caste or creed.”
Please straighten your facts on Karachi and least you could try to have a positive vision of the city and country.
Texas, U.S.A.

Fawad Rehman said...

Dear Nadia Taliban Khan, No matter what Karachi is not going to the hands of Talibans or backers of Taliban and Al-Qaeda such as Imran Khan, Naseer Ullah Babar or Jamat-e-Islami.

Dont Think Karachi same as Fata or Swat, As a Karachian We know how to protect our homeland and how to defeat enemies of Karachi and Islam.

I feel sorry for your parents who invested so much money on your education but the end result is still same "Another lady Taliban"


Asma Rohail said...

Dear Nadia,You are a nice, talented, educated young girl..I dont think you have to be so tried to say that MQM workers are criminals..what do you think that the people of Karachi are stupid that they give their votes in millions to these criminals in every election just because?..beleive me the political elements that you discussed in this article arent so famous or popular or powerful in Karachi..beleive me that Altaf Hussain really loves Pakistan and care about the sovereignty of its people and its you really think that Altaf Hussain is afraid of these thugs? you really think that these Taliban's are muslims?..arent these are the people who just want to compromise the teachings of Quran and prophet Muhammad(saw) for their own sake?..beleive me the people of Karachi arent afraid of these thugs and just by growing beard doesnt mean that these are Taliban's or their faithfuls..please girl wake up

Admin said...

After reading the article it is clear that the people who are still living in 90's and supporting Hameed Gul's ISI are out against MQM.

Ms Nadia Khaan aka Nadeem Khan used to write on yahoo groups, she made a group on yahoo against MQM so it is quite natural she is writing sugar coated poison against MQM.

The people like Nadia are very frustrated from the fact that Altaf Hussain and MQM shatters the dream of a Pan Islamic State other then Pakistan and Karachi as it's Capital.

The Jamat , Hameed Gul and their cronies who are out to make a new state and Karachi as a lunch Pad for Religious Terrorism are quite frustrated, People of Karachi the most educated class of Pakistan, the perfect Middle class are against religious Terrorism, She named many Madaris like Banori Town like Jamia Banoria but she forgot to tell everyone the Mufti Naeem of Jamia Banoria Supports MQM in elections.

Shah Turab Ul Qadri and His Son Shah Siraj Ul Qadri also supports MQM.

People like the writer forgot that this is not 1990's the world has been changed after 9/11 attacks on NY, the people who wants to turn Karachi into the Head Quarters of Talibans are living in fools world.

Jamat Hameed Gul and other Anti Pakistan forces always used Religious Terrorists against MQM in karachi so that the power of MQM can be eliminated and Karachi would ne handed over to These Religious Extremists but Thanks to All Mighty Allah, Altaf Hussain and MQM didn't let them do this.

Noted defense analyst and Writer Ayesha Siddiqa also said that intelligence agencies used Religious and Sectarian terrorists against MQM.

MQM is not afraid of Talibans nor the people of Karachi, we are just waiting for them, from a very long time i am advocating that now there will be no Army operation against MQM again, The pro Al Qaeda and taliban elements in behind the scene forces plus Jamat e islami will use Talibans against MQM and the people of karachi, thanks to Altaf Hussain who not only warned the people but also made them strong to fight with these terrorists.

As jamat and people with Hameed Gul mentality failed miserably to defeat MQM on every ground in Karachi now they want talibans to fight for them, and Ms Nadia on Buzzvines said this ,

In the form of Talibans they(she and plp like her) need a balancing factor.

So long miss MQM is not MQM of 1992, People of Karachi are with International Community against the religious terrorists in the WAR AGAINST TERRORISM.

Maliha Khan said...

Dear Ms. Khan,
I appreciate you putting so much time and effort into arguing your point, however, I must say that your argument is flawed in many ways. First of all, the question you pose “Why is Altaf Hussain afraid of Taliban” is quite naïve to say the least. Why don’t you ask the millions of Afghan refugees that fled to Pakistan and are still seeking refuge in camps in the north? I think that will give you a very sufficient answer.

You call MQM a secular political force, now, that is not an incorrect description, as many MQM officers/members/leaders also use the term ‘secular’ when describing MQM, however, when using that term one must be very careful. When many Muslims hear the word secular, they automatically assume non-religious or non-Islamic. But this is not true for MQM. MQM has never denounced religion or disassociated itself from religion. MQM does however promote pluralism and strongly encourages freedom of religion and belief. So yes, in that sense MQM does propagate secular politics. But the way you have written your blog, it makes it seem as if the Taliban, PPP, and all other religious parties of Pakistan are on one side and MQM is on the other side, which is completely not true. Either you do not understand the political situation of Pakistan or you need to brush up on your writing skills.

You describe the Taliban and PPP as having an established relationship even today, although the PPP has made statements against the Taliban on numerous occasions. Former Information Minister Sherry Rahman expressed concern that the tribal areas of Pakistan bordering Afghanistan are falling into the grip of the Taliban. So, I don’t know where you’re getting your information from, but even if the Taliban did grow under the PPP and Benazir Bhutto in the 1990s, the PPP does not associate itself with the Taliban any longer. And the PPP is not looking to make any deals with the Taliban.

Next, you mention that “Fazlur Rahman religious schools influence is also visible in Karachi and interior Sind.” Well, while you may be correct that the influence of Islamist parties is growing in Karachi, I must say that it is nowhere close to the influence that MQM has amongst the people of Karachi. MQM has constantly been growing and getting stronger since its inception in 1978 as APMSO. Currently, the governor of Sindh, Dr. Ishratul Ibad, belongs to MQM and the mayor of Karachi, Syed Mustafa Kamal also belongs to MQM. It is an obvious fact that neither Karachi nor the entire province of Sindh have prospered under any party as they have under MQM. By ignoring this critical fact, you are underestimating the will and intellect of the people of Karachi. These people are not naïve, in fact they are quite intelligent and time will show that they will not allow the Taliban to take over the city that they have worked so hard to preserve.

Also, I would like to say that, while you have stated in response to a comment above, that you do not support the Taliban, your blog seems to leave out all the misdeeds of the Taliban. You criticize MQM several times, yet you seem to be oblivious of the atrociousness of the Taliban. You are taking a very simplistic look at the entire situation. I suggest you please research this matter further and from both sides.

In the end, it is vital that I state that the founding father and leader of MQM, Altaf Hussain, is not afraid of the Taliban in the political sense as you tried to suggest unsuccessfully, but he is rather afraid for the safety and security of his people. MQM leaders do not even flinch at the thought of the Taliban taking control of Karachi, because they know that MQM will overpower the Taliban with ease. However, they continuously warn the people of Karachi of the dangers of Taliban, because the Taliban have begun to settle into the city and are already beginning to make life miserable for the citizens of Karachi.

Maliha Khan

Lee Ali said...

This is just a small glimpse of why Karachiites don't want Taliban in their midst: