Monday, April 11, 2016


Earlier today Pakistan announced a complete ban on rallies and protests in Islamabad, Pakistan. No! they are not banning public speech, but all the chaos and commotion caused in the capital by protestors and the way that it is caused is simply seen as unacceptable. Interior Minister, Chaudry Nisar Ali Khan announced that this prohibition is strictly for the capital, not for other parts in the country. The reason being, because the protesters blocked roads, disrespected police authority, disrupted government offices and parliament. The protestors only dispersed after the government warned it would resort to forceful removal.

Now, why were they protesting? Well remember my last blog mentioned Shahbaz Ali Taseer in my blog titled, “PAKISTANI POLITICIANS SON: ABDUCTED BUT STILL ALIVE”. Well, this havoc began after he had been found about a couple week back. Fundamental Islamists descended on the capital – Islamabad – to protest against the execution the body guard that assassinated Shahbaz Ali Taseer’s father. Salman Taseer, his father, happened to be a secular governor, at the time of the assassination, who was working to make blasphemy laws harsher in Pakistan.   

With extremists on one end and public safety on another it is interesting to see where and how the Pakistani parliament would sway. The reason extreme Islamists are protesting so hard is because of the concept of “Jihad” in the Quran. “Jihad” - is an Islamic term referring to the religious duty of Muslims to maintain the religion. In Arabic, the word jihād is a noun meaning the act of "striving, applying oneself, struggling, persevering". In this day in age isn’t Jihad more about the internal struggle to preserve the lord – Allah – instead of the external?

Sunday, April 3, 2016


Shahbaz Ali Taseer, the son of a prominent governor Salman Taseer. Sahabaz Ali Taseer was abducted on August 26th 2011 in Lahore. Eight months before his kidnapping, his father was assassinated by his own security guard, who was out raged by the governor’s campaign to alter he countries blasphemy laws. The Taseer family didn’t only lose a father and a husband but also suffered the loss of a son and brother for almost 5 years. The family is a pubic symbol for how extremists punish and threaten political families that try to bring liberal change.

Much of the information regarding Shahbaz Ali Taseer’s health and experience has not been revealed, since he was only found on Tuesday, 29th March 2016. What we do know is that he was discovered in Kuchlak, a town near Quetta. Quetta is in the Baluchistan Province, a region that has bee a battleground between the Pakistani security and ethnic Baluch separatists. It is also known to have a strong influence of sectarian extremist groups like the Afghan Taliban.

Mumtaz Qadri, he confessed killer of the late Mr. Taseer (Shahbaz Ali Taseer’s father) was seen as a hero for Islam by people of that region. However, it is still not clear which militant group was holding Mr. Taseer.

What does this tell us about extremist groups and secularists? They are scared! They are scared of liberal movement. But with the technology boom how can they push for conservative reform any longer….


I am woman, hear me roar
In numbers too big to ignore
And I know too much to go back an' pretend
'Cause I've heard it all before
And I've been down there on the floor
No one's ever gonna keep me down again

Oh yes, I am wise
But it's wisdom born of pain
Yes, I've paid the price
But look how much I gained
If I have to, I can do anything
I am strong
I am invincible
I am woman


By Helen Reddy

Punjab Protection of Women Against Violence Act has brought about a radical movement in Pakistan that no longer allows a husband to beat his wife without facing serious criminal charges and in some cases, eviction for him own home. Women are being empowered to speak out against the cruelty being done towards them. Unfortunately, many religious and political parties have stated that this new law is “un-Islamic”. The reality of the matter is that, this law is seen as a threat to religious institutions that have gained all their power from misinterpretation.

New York Times article, “The Dirty Old Men of Pakistan” by Mohammad Hanif states the hypocrisy of the institutions that are are fighting against this law. “Their logic goes like this: If you beat up a person on the street, it’s a criminal assault. If you bash someone in your bedroom, you’re protected by the sanctity of your home. If you kill a stranger, it’s murder. If you shoot your own sister, you’re defending your honor.” Not only have many political parties deemed opposition towards this bill, but the government appointed for Council of Islamic Ideology has declared the law religiously and culturally unethical.

What they are saying is.... it is okay for a man to marry a minor. It is okay for a man to marry a second, third, fourth and fifth wife without ever asking for permission to the woman he is already committed to. It is okay for a man to rape his wife time and time again because it is almost impossible for a woman to prove rape. It is okay for a man to beat his wife because she is simply dispensable.

The concept of misogyny: dislike or prejudice against women, is far older than any religion. However, women historically have prevailed through this. I think what scares these old religious men are the women in Pakistan that have triumphed in spite of the many hurdles placed in front of them – far more complex hurdles than any man has had to jump over. In the recent past, we have had women writing, flying, running companies, climbing mountains, winning Oscars and Nobel prizes, policing the streets, running businesses and winning races. Successful women in my country aren’t interested in speaking about how unfair it is to be a woman in Pakistan; instead, they simply accept the fact and find ways to work with it, around it or against it and in the process inspire and empower other women.