Pakistani civil society is still alive and vibrant. The people of Pakistan need a new social contract that strengthens the rule of law and good governance. The civil society needs to galvanize and throw up new leadership capable of exerting relentless pressure on the government and political parties. The silent majority has to venture out of their homes and vote for honest people and political parties. People need to reassert control over the state and reoccupy space they have ceded.
Whilst trying to suggest a remedy for an ailment it is imperative that one should try to identify the causes that led to this condition...TALIBS...when Pakistan came into existence the Muslims of the subcontinent had already given assess to the influence of the fundamentalists Mula or Mulani into their homes. Since majority of the Muslim households were born Muslims? Where rituals of prayer, zakat, fasting and Eid held major sway over understanding the soul and essence of the Holy Koran. In this line up it became mandatory for every muslim child to learn and read the spara under the strict watch of the local mulla.. Most of the Muslims of the sub-continent knew their religion through the maulvi..instead of taking pains to learn the Arabic language and to understand the meaning....or to read the Koran with meaning..Unfortunately most of the maulvis who came to teach were themselves the product of a village madrassa, where again the emphasis was on Hifz rather than on understanding , contemplation and application of the Holy Koran. Besides this most students in Madaris were orphans or children of the poor who could not afford to give their children a square meal, and these young souls were subjugated to hard ships and un natural acts by their seniors and were forced to go and collect..literally beg for the odd roti or gogi which was given or thrown to them by the local villagers..Under these circumstances one can well imagine the physce and personality of a fully blown maulana. Leave aside their lack of knowledge...the circumstances under which they were bred would create a venom in their thought process...that can only lead to hatred of the society at large , which the forces that be utilized to rally them by giving them an identity and to satiate their anger through extremism. Over a period of time majority of Pakistani's were taught their religion by literally illiterate mullahs and at the same time let these mullahs become the guardians of the most beautiful and progressive religion of all times..These Mullahs have taken control of all the mosques spread over the length and breadth of the country and are spewing their poison through the loud speakers made available to them officially. The half learned listeners do not have the strength of knowledge or character to counter the wrong propagation of their religion. To adds fuel to the fire....the capitalists decided to use their blind faith to counter the communists , thus this extremist element came out of the conflict tasting blood , being victorious and battle hardy.... They were used and discarded "the disposable mullah" ??? the insult combined with taste of victory made the local leaders believe that they could now conquer the world and re establish the lost glory of Islam..whether this dream took root by itself or was implanted by the powers that be....is debatable. The issue at hand for all Pakistan loving members of this country is to be able to define the enemy...are our Governments trusting the allies a bit too much and accepting their rhetoric at face value .out of ignorance , fear or perks and privileges..???? are the mullahs playing into the hands of their true enemy...? In a scenario like this , where there is no black or white...but various shades of grey...it becomes very difficult to discern friend from foe. Before we look at the possibilities by which we can try to stop/contain/utilize the extremist mullah..we must not forget that this force by default may be acting as the buffer against physical aggression to our northern borders by our enemy/enemies...?and it will suit them 100% to have the talibs broken and disarmed.....???? STOPPING the onslaught of Talibs: Japan in the late 18th or early 19th century put to sword approx 17000 missionaries who were bent on changing the culture and philosophy of Japan. I will not mention Ataturk here because whilst his name was used extensively..his philosophy was not implemented by our previous President. Primitivity cannot be controlled by human rights laws or debate in parliament. The only way to re-establish the writ of the countries law against those who taken up arms against it , is through ruthless application of the forces available..as is obvious pussy footing, warped diplomacy and peace deals have sieged the capital and other major cities of the country..The fact that Wana to Swat is in their sway, major cities are living under threat and the southern Punjab rural areas are coming under pressure...these acts leave no room for further contemplation on this issue...either the writ is re-established or the forces can lay down their arms and let the defining geo -political event of the 21st century unfold.."The Talibanisation of AfPak". Food management & boarding: The major recruiting factors for madrassas are food and lodging, instead of incurring heavy expenditure of constructing new facilities and handing them over to corrupt government functionaries..the ideal solution would be to ensure that these madrassa children also attend the local schools and study other subjects like normal children and mix and play with local children whilst boarding and lodging in the madrassa, where they study religion with a new twist of hifz with translation/understanding & contemplation..to adjust the madrassa children in the schools the Govt can get will get the extra classes constructed..at this stage ensuring free primary education for all along with a free lunch should be the focus of all provincial governments. To check the brainwashing of these talibs, the Govt will ensure a strict code of what can and what cannot be taught, through installing learned Alims..if at the moment the numbers do not match..then roving teams can be created to maintain a check and balance To ensure administrative control on a day to day bases and Army Havaldar or Subedar is deputed and monitored ..and a psychologist is made available for the children .. while all the time the Government should endeavour to achieve a transparent disbursement of Zakat in these madrassa so that over a period of time it can develop a reputation and thus win the trust of the Muslims who send their Zakat in billions...So instead of closing down the madaris , we bring them into the mainstream and wean the Mosque away from the semi - literate mullahs into the hands of true alims....from maulvi to mu alim.This would only be possible after the madrassas have been screened and the senior students known to have been brainwashed are separated , de-toxicated and re-recruited in main stream para military forces....where in the world will u get a hardened ...trained recruit...??? Turn this liability into an asset...To create learned and balanced heads of Madaris...the universities should produce Masters and PHD'S in Islamic studies...the subject material should be the best covering study of Koran with translation , Islamic History , comparative religions , culture, ethnic & conflict resolutions-etc. These graduates should be employed with comfortable pays and perks in these madaris..for those posted to the bondooks , a hard area allowance may be created..Another important step is to ban the entry of Maulvis, peers and maulanas who are politically inclined into these institutions. Empowering civil society: for this a separate article is required but at this stage let me mention that civil society needs to be awakened, instead of remaining as the silent majority, they should be bonded into becoming the vocal and pro - active majority..All Muhalla level committees should have their meetings in the mosque, instead of locking these after ritual prayers and a sub committee formed of the relatively aware and learned to counter the extremist propagation of the maulvi Secular Pakistan:The final aim of this exercise should be to achieve a secular Pakistan as per the speech of the Quaid on 11th August. The curriculum should be vetted and if we have to teach Islam in schools, than we should also cater for teaching Christianity , Hinduism , Sikhism , Budhism , Zorastriasm-etc for those Pakistanis who are followers of those religions. If we are to save Pakistan , than a major surgery is the need of the day...Not only do we need to lynch the extremists who are distorting the beautiful religion of Islam but also hang the bodies of the corrupt politicians , generals , police officials , contractors, tax officials-etc ..etc and hang their bodies from the poles with their crime written clearly for all to see..only than would the Nation back wholeheartedly the Government which does this and would march on Swat to contain the extremists.....but ....but who ever dreams of doing this must do the home work in fine detail...so as to ensure the application of a new and just workable system.... I have been propagating various issues which I feel could contain and lessen some of the problems that our country is faced with...at this juncture let it suffice that converting to the Presidential form of Government and making thirty provinces will not only go a long way in propagating unity and in maximizing devolution of power, which in themselves will help contain the spread of extremism in our society...but we will be pre - empting the NEO-con agenda of doing away with the state and breaking them down to regional tribes...???? .Pakistan Zindabad E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org