By Umar Daud Khattak-Muslims divided the Indian subcontinent that led to the creation of Pakistan. They ruled over Indian subcontinent for about 800 years before the British. There was no such demand of an independent Muslim country during those 800 years when they were ruling. During all these years, they created a new language for themselves, which they considered the first ever language of the Muslims. Urdu inherited words from mainly Persian and Arabic and is an Islamic modification of Hindi language. Muslims ruled the Indian subcontinent and used Persian as the main language of their administration.
Hindus and Sikhs who are indigenous civilizations to the Indian subcontinent lived among the Muslims in Pakistan and Afghanistan before the partition. Our forefathers who lived then tell us that none cared about religion as Hindus were considered as an integral part of our societies. They had shops, businesses and were living among us. We did not even think for a while that they are different, there was no such thing at all. But since the inception of Pakistan in 1947, things began to change even in Afghanistan. We were taught or told that societies and villages having Hindu populations would not receive Allah’s blessings and that their (Hindus) hearts are closed and that they would never accept Islam.
Pakistan officially triggered this trend through indoctrination and streamlining the Muslims’ mass mentality and perceptions that Hindus should either accept Islam or their societies would be under the Allah’s wrath. Muslims started to sideline and isolate Hindus in Pakistan and Afghanistan shortly after the inception of Pakistan in the villages of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Afghanistan. Pakistani state policy of strengthening the ideology of two-nation manifested even in Afghanistan in a bid to create stronger foundations for its new born Islamist state. I would not here mention the forceful evacuations, looting and rape of the Hindu populations in major cities and townships of the current day Pakistan. I focus on the ideological and systematic indoctrination that led to the current day crisis at Kashmir that has fed up the Indian state.
Sixty-eight years later since the inception of Pakistan in 1947, the word Hindu has become the most cursed word among the Muslims of Pakistan and Afghanistan. It gives very negative connotations and meanings and is used as slang in day-to-day conversations. Hindus are the most prosecuted people in Pakistan and there are hardly few families currently living in Afghanistan as Pakistan-backed Afghan fighters took over Kabul in 1992, most of the Hindu population left Afghanistan to take refuge in current day India and western countries. Now one can hardly find the remains of their relatives, temples and worship places.
Pakistani state security is deeply rooted in fanaticizing its Muslims and the Muslims in its neighborhood, supporting Islamic extremism and Jihad in order to strengthen its two-nation theory. Pakistan occupied Baluchistan, Pashtun Tribal belt and even since its inception, has been trying to occupy Afghanistan in an effort to establish the two-nation theory as a strong basis for Muslims’ nationhood in South and Central Asia.
Pakistan established many madrassas (seminaries) for teaching and systematically indoctrinating its Muslims with South Asian Islam that primarily consider the Hindu as its core enemy, like Middle Eastern Islam considers Jew as its primary enemy. Most of the students in these madrassas come from Pashtun tribal belt known as FATA and Afghanistan. Pakistan established its South Asian version of Islam in Afghanistan. It has numerous ideological, political and armed groups to preach and propagate the South Asian Islam in its most radical form structured against the Hindus. They established training grounds and camps for those madrassas students who showed extreme radical South Asian Islamist behavior and made sanctuaries for them in the unconstitutional or lawless Pashtun tribal belt and especially in Waziristan.
Thousands of terrorists are trained and provided arms in those training centers under the patronage of Pakistani Army and intelligence agencies and then sent to the neighboring countries for carrying out terrorist attacks in the name of Jihad. They take recruits from a large 200+35 millions Muslim population of Pakistan and Afghanistan and about 70,000 seminaries and hundreds of training centers in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, FATA, and Pakistan-administered Kashmir provide the ideological and armed force for Pakistani interferences and terrorists attacks in the neighboring countries. This establishes Pakistan’s hold on the Muslims’ mass mentality and streamline it systematically towards firmly rooting its state security in Islamist ideology based on which it came into being.
Those nationalist, liberal and secular Muslims in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan-administered Kashmir, FATA, Baluchistan and Sindh who accuse the Pakistani state of its policy to support Islamic extremists or terrorists and those who demand freedom and rights for Pashtuns and Baluchs or Sindhis are abducted, killed and dumped. Thousands of Baluch, Sindhi and Pashtun youth are among the missing persons who are against Islamic extremism and who demand or struggle for the rights of their people or freedom. But no one cares and Pakistan continues its Waziristan type Islamist settlements in Pakistan-administered Kashmir that infiltrate into Indian Kashmir and carry forward the Pakistani state policy.
What is going in Kashmir today is the Pakistan-led South Asian version of Radical Islamic ideology rather than any freedom movement. A freedom war is fought for resources, rights, and protection of culture and language and for a national identity that is under occupation of a foreign power, which is not the case in Kashmir. If Pashtuns and Baluchs or Sindhis demand freedom, they do for their national identity and to save their large Muslim populations from the Pakistani state Islamist radical ideology that finally leads to terrorism. Had there been no Pakistani state; Pashtuns, Baluchs and Sindhis might not need any freedom, instead they could accommodate as autonomous states under New Delhi as in the current day India. Pakistani state has threated our culture, language, social norms, and identity and has been using our people as cannon fodders or raw materials in their Islamic seminaries-cum-terrorists breeding factories that establish Islamic Sharia Law and order to take the lead in everything superimposing our indigenous secular and democratic culture and society.
Today Pakistan has placed international terrorists networks including Al Qaeda and others in Waziristan and has made them safe places. Waziristan literally has become an international terrorists’ capital. Pakistan forcefully evacuated about 1.6 millions local Waziristani people to accommodate the foreign terrorist networks and killed about 200,000 Waziristani people who resisted forceful evacuation.
Pakistan plans to establish Jammu and Kashmir and Pakistan-administered Kashmir as second Waziristan to serve its deep state policies known as strategic depth. It will remain a continuous trouble for India and the region if Pakistani plans are not nipped in the bud.
The writer is an exiled Pashtun political activist struggling for the Independence of Pashtunistan, now based in Kabul, Afghanistan. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org