Maulana, maulvi and the constitution

Maulana, maulvi and the constitution

Dr Haider Shah: Our constitution’s preface, on the other hand, reads more like a short lecture in theology. The opening sentence sets the tone The latest round of negotiations with the Taliban leaders has reignited the old debate on the constitution and sharia. Some, like Maulana Abdul Aziz, tell us that the future of Pakistan should be decided on the […]

Negotiations or a comedy of errors?

Negotiations or a comedy of errors?

Haider Shah: It is often thought that since the Taliban are of tribal origin and not exposed to modern education, therefore they are unable to understand the true meaning of Islam. One can have this predicament anywhere with any background For the first time in the last five years we have started seeing something tangible in terms of negotiations between […]

Soft and hard terrorism

Soft and hard terrorism

Haider Shah: In a country where the learned judges, wearing the robes of justice, are unable to appreciate this simple fact, legislators do not feel the urge to modernise the blasphemy laws and opinion makers practice self-censorship, why should we then single out the Taliban as fanatics and barbarians?

Anti-terrorism policy alone is not enough

Anti-terrorism policy alone is not enough

Haider Shah: In the media and educational institutions, sermonisers were given a free hand to spread their discourse of hatred and bigotry while progressive rationalist thinkers were actively discouraged. Just as we bid farewell to an eventful 2013, hardly did we know that much worse awaited us in the first month of the New Year. An unprecedented rise in terrorist activities […]