Excerpt from the Targeting of “Minority Others” in Pakistan:
With a population estimated at over 187 million and as the fifth most populous country in the world and the second most populous country with a Muslim majority Pakistan has been experiencing a major human rights crisis in recent years. Minority Rights Group International, in its annual State of the World’s Minorities reports for both 2007 and 2008, for example, placed Pakistan in the top ten (out of nearly 200 states) of its lists of states violating minority rights. “The recent wave of intolerance toward minorities”, Ahmed Rashid has argued, “is a sign of the rapid deterioration of the very idea of Pakistan. Many Pakistanis have forgotten that when Muhammad Ali Jinnah founded Pakistan in 1947, it was not partitioned from India to become an Islamic state. It was conceived as a democratic state for Muslims and all minorities, who could live together and worship freely. The white stripe down the side of Pakistan’s green flag represents those minorities, the non-Muslims, who would be forever protected and treated as equal citizens by the majority-Muslim population.
The flag itself illustrates their presence, and is a commitment to their survival. [But] the recent mayhem in the country has been the most disturbing since 1947, because it totally repudiates those founding principles” sharp contrast to the symbolism reflected on the Pakistani flag”. In 2011, Minority Rights Group International “ranked Pakistan as the sixth-most-dangerous country in the world for minorities”, with “Ahmadiyya, Balochis, Hindus, Mohajirs, Pashtun, Sindhis, other religious minorities” listed as those most under threat.
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All proceeds from the sale of the book support the work of the BPCA. Much of the early sales will be used to support victims of the Peshawar bomb attacks – December 2013.