In-depth: How Pakistanis celebrated destruction of an Ahmadi worship place
Aftermath of every anti-Ahmadi incident no one talks about. From abuses towards Ahmadis to death threats, everything flies on Internet.
In a video after incident, PTI (mainstream political party led by Imran khan) leader Hamid Raza expressed his gratitude to the local Tehsil Municipal Administration (TMA), DPO Sialkot and the Deputy Commissioner for supporting the mob’s violent activity. Moreover, he threatened in the video to reduce the city to ‘ashes’ if anyone lodges a First Information Report (FIR) against any member of the mob.
Internet media covered the incident and as the ‘Ahmadi’ word started to pop up on social media trends, many came to the defense of culprits. With commendable comments for the wrongdoers, abuses for the victims, more prejudices against Ahmadis to further death threats —everything was on the board.
Starting from Dr Muhammad Ashraf Asif (Leader of Tehreek-e-Labaik Ya Rasool Allah), a political party registered in election commission of Pakistan to take part in the upcoming elections of Pakistan in 2018, applauded and approved the destruction of the worship place by his likeminded followers.
کیاانتظامیہ @DrAshrafAsif کو نفرت کی آگ مزید بھڑکانے اور قانون کو ہاتھ میں لینے کے عمل کو سراہنے کے جرم میں گرفتار کرے گی؟ #AhmadiApartheid #AhmadiMosqueattack @Xadeejournalist @MJibranNasir @bilalfqi @pid_gov @GovtOfPunjab @shazbkhanzdaGEO @CMShehbaz @KashifMD @BBCUrdu pic.twitter.com/4v4QcYMHZE
— Raja Ata-Ul Mannan (@Amraja75) May 26, 2018
Even being outside from Pakistan couldn’t hold him back from supporting the rogue elements.
A user who cites himself as a ‘defender of Pakistan’ informed people who were raising their concerns about the particular incident that
“According to the Law of Pakistan Ahmadis aren’t Muslims and are prohibited to refer their worship place as a Mosque, call to prayer, preach religious ideas”
آجکل لفافہ صحافی اور لبرلز سیالکوٹ کے واقعے کو لے کر بڑا چیخ و پکار کر رہے ہیں_ انکی طلاع کے لئے عرض ہے “کہ قادیانی پاکستان کے آئین کے تحت غیر مسلم ہے اور وہ اپنی عبادت گاہ کو مسجد کا نام نہیں دے سکتے اور نہ ہی انہیں اذان دینے اور تبلیغ کرنے کی اجازت ہے”_
— Warrior?? (@defenderOfPak) May 24, 2018
Another twitter user asked “What’s the fuss here”? She mentioned the infamous second amendment to the constitution of Pakistan in which Ahmadis were officially declared ‘infidels’ by the state, proving that Anti-Ahmadi Laws in Pakistan aid this kind of behavior. She justified ransacking of the worship place after a local court ordered to demolish it.
What’s the fuss here? Ahmadi qadiani cannot preach their religion acc to constitution of 1973.
That’s against pak law, and this worship place was demolished after the court issued an ‘okay’ .
All seems good and just.
— Muslimah (@mjik1922) May 24, 2018
As many were justifying the razing of an Ahmadi worship place, this user named himself in his tweet and took an oath that;
“No one is worthy of worship but Allah, and Muhammad (sa) is his Last messenger. I fully respect other religions however, I do consider Qadianis [pejorative term for ahmadis] as worthy of death.” (Hashtag: curse on Qadianis)
ظہیر یعنی میں
الله کو حاضر جان کر اقرار کرتا ہوں کہ
الله کے سوا کوئی عبادت کے لائق نہیں اور
محمد رسول الله صلی اللہ علیہ وآلہ وسلم
الله پاک کے آخری نبی ہیں !!
میں ہندو ، عیسائی اور دبا کے ہر طرح کے مذہب کا احترام کر سکتا ہوں لیکن قادیانی کو واجب القتل مانتا ہوں#Lanatqadiyani
— ?XÆH€£R? (@Zaheer_Official) May 24, 2018
Every Anti-Ahmadi incident provides these people a valid reason to curse and threaten an already marginalized and persecuted community. What’s clear to them is there will be no consequences at all.
“The museum (referring to the worship place) of ‘Qadiani Blasphemers’ near to Allama iqbal house is being destroyed. Long live the crown of Last prophetood” This user said.
Probably, Allama iqbal is the only philosopher every common Pakistani knows. He was well ahead in his Anti-Ahmadi rhetoric. Almost every right wing clergyman quotes his poetry defending their vile views.
قادیانی گستاخوں کا عجائب گھر مسمار کیا جارہا ہے سیالکوٹ کشمیر محلہ شاعر مشرق علامہ اقبال رحمتہ اللہ تعالی کے گھر کے قریب ۔
تاجدار ختم نبوت زندہ باد زندہ باد
یاد رہے یہ وہی عجائب گھر ہے جو مرزا قادیانی مرزئی ملعون غلام قادیانی کی یاد میں بنایا جارہا تھا۔۔۔۔۔
— توصیف حیدر (@Touseef_TLP) May 24, 2018
Another user named ‘Long live ISI’ abused the founder of Ahmadiyya movement and hailed the incident. Remember, these are the same people who defend killings of other people who blaspheme against noble personalities of their religion.
پلید مرزا قادیانی کی یاد میں بننے والا میوزیم عاشقانِ رسول صلی الله عليه و آلہ وسلم نے توڑ کر کھنڈروں میں تبدیل کر دیا۔
تاجدار ختم نبوت زنده باد
— جیوے آئی ایس آئی (@ISI1st) May 24, 2018
Mr Hamza payed his tribute to the people of Sialkot on demolishing the worship place.
*The word he has used for the worship place can’t be even translated because of its nasty meaning.*
— Ali Hamza (@AliHamzaReal) May 24, 2018
Another user with the name of Ahmad (one of the name of Prophet Muhammad) congratulating his fellow Pakistanis. Openly and proudly expressing that Ahmadis “don’t have any rights to live in Pakistan”
WeLL done MusLims.
We are AHMADI.
They are bLoody Mirzayi_Qadiani_DajjaL_Kazzab_Laanti.
They don’t have rights to live in Pakistan wiTh The TitLe of MusLim.
And they don’t have rights to build mosques with the titLe of MusLim community#Ahmadiyya #Sialkot
— AHMAD (@AneeQAH078600) May 24, 2018
Moving on to Facebook – a more common social media platform in Pakistan — things are as much nauseating as on twitter. People collecting tons of likes on commenting prejudices, abuses and death threats to Ahmadis is a standard followed by many. Both platforms are working as a killing machine for minorities in Pakistan.
A Facebook user Abdul Manan vows to play football with the heads of Qadianis [Ahmadis] under a post. He threatened Ahmadis to move out from Pakistan otherwise they will face severe consequences, resulting in their death.
How are these people any different from terrorists? Filled with hatred and rage up to their mouths, they have every potential of harming their fellow citizens.
BBC Urdu reported the incident on its facebook page. Many were outraged — not on the fact that a worship place had been destroyed by some fanatics, but on why BBC reported it.
After all, as it was shared, Pakistanis who are drunk in Anti-Ahmadi Hatred had to respond to it. Here’s how they responded:
“I’m proud on those who have made this mosque to pieces” Mubashir Ali said. Hundreds poured Likes and Love reactions on his comment.
In the comment section, according to this gentleman, Ahmadis claiming their worship place as a ‘mosque’ is reason enough to demolish it.
And here it’s quite obvious that Pakistanis hate Ahmadis irrespective of gender.
“Ahmadis aren’t a minority. They are traitors of religion. They must be treated this way” Hira added.
What’s noteworthy here is that she had a pic of Jerusalem mosque on her profile. Far away, she’s concerned about Palestinian plight (rightly so) but she’s supporting an apartheid in her own country. Irony!
Ahmad prayed for the “destruction” of Ahmadis and the criminals were hailed again by their fellow citizens.
If you are wondering when is it okay to kill Ahmadis, Hannan explained when it is.
“As long as they [Ahmadis] refers themselves as Muslims this should carry on ….As long as they [Ahmadis] are damaging the name of Islam, the order is to kill them”
And of course, yet again, likes and reactions dropped on his comment by dozens.
Mr Afridi took things to a whole new level. He simply put an end to the ‘mosque or not a mosque’ debate and called for “no place of worship for Ahmadis in Pakistan”
Everything you have just witnessed is just a tip of an iceberg. With only few hours of scrolling I’ve been able to spot hundreds of Anti-Ahmadi remarks. And keep in mind, all of this is only linked to the latest incident. What are the security agencies of Pakistan doing? If a common person like me can find these vile and distressing ideas, why can’t they? Are they even serious to protect Pakistani Ahmadis? God knows.
And if still that ‘these people don’t represent whole nation’ bugs your mind, let me remind you that Pakistan’s apartheid-like oppression of Ahmadis is not the work of ‘a small group of fanatics’.
Anti-Ahmadi hatred has strong roots in Pakistan’s Government departments, Judiciary, Military and much more. It is enshrined in Pakistan’s constitution, enacted through punitive laws, pandered to by most political parties and enforced by state functionaries & Islamists with popular social sanction.
And lastly, you must be skeptical about how Ahmadis have reacted after the incident? Of course they have — in the most graceful way possible. They prayed at the same place that was destroyed in the morning.
The author is a student, reader, learner and an occasional writer.