Law looks good in books: Hindu Minority
Pakistan’s Initial Stance and the current situation
Pakistan is the fifth thick populated country in the world, comprised of 22 million populations having about 4 percentage of the minority in which Hindus are 1.6 percentages. The white stripe in the flag represents the minority. Not only this but also the founder of Pakistan Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah said in the very first speech after the independence that “You are free; you are free to go to your temples, you are free to go to your mosques or to any other places of worship in this State of Pakistan. You may belong to any religion or caste or creed — that has nothing to do with the business of the State”.
But today, the circumstances are completely contrary to it. Nowadays, Hindus are facing engrave religious grievances in every hebdomad. Provincial as well as the federal government has completely become a nonstarter regarding the religious rights and security of the Hindu minority in Pakistan.
Let us revert to the recent brain teaser quagmires with the Hindu minorities in Pakistan pertaining to their places of worship and security.
Problem Number 1
Priya Kumari, an innocent Hindu girl of seven years has been kidnapped from Sangrar near Sukkur, Sindh on the tenth Moharram. Police have not found any clue of her kidnapping in spite of several protests by the Hindus in different cities of Sindh. How is it possible for the government to be cavalier when it comes to minorities?
Problem Number 2
Anti Forced Conversion Bill was restrained to be passed in the parliament which include a dossier or mechanism for the proselytizing person that he/she has to be major and to confirm from the court of Additional Session Judge by forwarding an application within the seven days, the judge will fix a date for an interview with the applicant after the receipt of the application for conversion of his/her religion by vindicating the grounds for doing so and to scrutiny whether it has been done out of free consent or any duress after that within the period of 90 days the applicant will go through a comparative study of religions after satisfaction, the judge will announce the certificate of change of religion.
The proposed bill also describes the punishment from 5 to 10 years and a fine of 100,000 to 200,000 for the person who uses criminal force or intimidation to proselytize an applicant to another religion.
The person who is abettor behind this criminal offence will be liable to imprisonment from 3 to 5 years or a fine of Rs.100,000.
The bill held that the age of the applicant will be decided on the basis of Birth Certificate, School Enrollment Certificate, or Nadra-B form if not this all then the court will opt for medical examination. The bill also preserved the right of appeal to the high court in case of acquittal or conviction within ten days from the day judgment passed.
Most of the Muslim political leaders, clerics and the Ministry of Religious Affairs called this bill is “Anti-Islam”. Simply, they colluded to overthrow the bill and were forced not to bring it again in the parliament amidst protest of PTI MNAs Lal Chand Malhi and Ramesh Kumar Vankwani.
Problem Number 3
A week ago, bullies entered the temple namely “Devi Mata” near Kotri Dam Sindh, at late night and desecrated the infrastructure, idols and stole three silver chains and twenty-five thousand cash from the temple. Lamentably, there isn’t any action taken against the goons on the side of government that’s a completely unconstitutional way to run the state.
US Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF): In 2020, USCIRF enlisted incidents with Hindus facing discrimination and desecration of their religious sites. The temples of Hindus are vandalized by the mobs and these mobs are walking freely after doing these inhuman commissions. It further added that the construction of Islamabad’s Hindu temple was halted by the government due to pressure of the clerics and politicians who feel unhappy in allocating the state money on the Hindu temple, stated in the report.
That’s why it is rightly said that law is a trap for small insects but big insects always go across it by piercing it. If we delve into the books of law then it is an open violation of law, fundamental rights and constitution.
Pawan Kumar is student of law at Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto University. He is not a parochial and introvert but bibliophile. He tries to find real facts in issue between or among the countries of the world because the media of today does not depict the original enigma due to biasness and disguise them.