Amir Aziz, General Secretary, AAIIL
With the induction of the newly-elected Government in Pakistan, the people had high hopes that this will at least give a sigh of relief to the wave of persecution against Muslim minority sects and non-Muslim minorities in the country. However, the Ahmadiyya Community was shocked when their channels, especially that of the Lahore Ahmadiyya Group, were banned.
We are at a loss to understand why the community which, right from its inception, has been against any sort of persecution, not as a matter of policy but as an article of faith, has become the first target of the new Government. Extreme elements in Pakistan are rampant and now the Government’s banning of Ahmadi websites will give these elements further encouragement. To allege that these websites are a cause of annoyance to the extremist elements is flimsy and conceals the Government’s seemingly own nefarious underhanded designs.
Even before the new Government came into being, the Punjab Government took some very unwarranted measures against some presses and binders in Lahore that were doing Ahmadiyya printing. Are Ahmadis in any way involved in the target killings and terrorist acts against the Shia, Bhora, and even Sunni, and business communities in Punjab and other provinces?
Since the inception of Pakistan, Ahmadis have been the most faithful and peaceful of all the communities. Unfortunately, however, they are the people who have been the target of the worst persecution and harassment and even killing.
We appeal to the new Government of Pakistan that such diversionary measures designed to take the public’s attention away from grave social and economic issues should be avoided and all minority groups, including Christians, should be given due guarantee of freedom and security.
Maybe it is on the basis of wrong intelligence reports that the recent measures have been undertaken against the most faithful, peaceful and the well-wishers of Pakistan.
We, members of the Lahore Ahmadiyya Community, strongly feel that such measures of banning our websites as recently taken by the Government will further encourage anti-Government elements and there is every likelihood that they will press for further similar undemocratic and un-Islamic steps which will not only damage the image of Pakistan abroad but will also make things difficult in improving good governance, for which the people have given a high mandate to the Government.
We hope and pray that Allah may guide the Government in the right direction so that the future of Pakistan, which is very much at stake, may once again be on the road to progress and stability.