I am rather pleased to read the following, its central thrust is Silence, and I wrote the article just a day before this article appears in Guardian. http://blasphemylaws.blogspot.com/2011/03/pakistan-blaming-blasphemy-laws.html # # #
Two months ago, after Governor Salmaan Taseer's murder and the jubilant support for the policeman who killed him, religious scholars in Pakistan told us that since common people don't know enough about religion they should leave it to those who do – basically anyone with a beard.
: Silence has become the mother of all blasphemies http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/mar/03/pakistan-silence-blasphemy-mohammed-hanif Pakistan
Everyone thought it made a cruel kind of sense. So everyone decided to shut up: the Pakistan Peoples party (PPP) government because it wanted to cling to power, liberals in the media because they didn't want to be the next Taseer. The move to amend the blasphemy law was shelved.
It was an unprecedented victory for
In a very short span of time,
During the last two months sar tan se juda (off with their heads) has become as familiar a slogan as all the corporate songs about the Cricket World Cup. Banners appeared all over
So now disagreeing with anyone who has a beard and armed bodyguards can get you killed. The PPP government has tried to appease this lot by silencing the one-and-a-half liberal voices it had. What it didn't realise is that you can't really appease people who insist their word is God's word, their honour as sacred as the Holy Prophet's. In
Mohammed Hanif is a journalist and author of the novel A Case of Exploding Mangoes