Extremism will destroy India

Extremism will destroy India

Tahir Ali Khan

Although the major countries of the world are showing carelessness towards the phenomenon for their own interests and most in India are also denying its existence, the truth is that India has become a center of Hindu nationalism, racism, bigotry, extremism and violence. In the words of the Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, an embarrassing fact is that Dalits, Muslims and tribes are not considered human beings herenin India.

Violence against minorities, the weak and women is common in most countries but in India it is happening under government umbrella.

India, a nuclear-armed country with a population of 1.5 billion, has been occupied by the Nazi-influenced RSS. Extremist Hindu militias armed with spears and sticks with overt or tacit support from the government have cut loose a reign of terror against minorities.

Extremism and intolerance in India pose a serious threat to the security of all minorities, especially Muslims. India’s path of hatred, religious extremism and racism has resulted in and will further entail bloodshed and destruction.

History shows that every nation that has taken this path has suffered loss, chaos and destruction. Everyone in Nazi Germany, Rowanda, Myanmar, the former Yugoslavia, etc. has seen the result of this policy. If India doesn’t correct its behaviour, it is bound to meet the same catastrophic fate.

Mahatma Gandhi writes in his book, “The India of My Dreams: “I am convinced that India will emerge as a beacon for the whole world. If India accepts the ideology of violence, it will be a test for me. My religion doesn’t need any geographical boundaries. My patriotism is subject to my religion. My whole life (through the philosophy of non-violence) is dedicated to the service of India. The day India declares its belief in violence, I would prefer to leave India. Then I will not be proud of India. “

If Gandhi were alive today, he would surely have shed tears of blood over the extremist transformation of India and he would have surely left it because violence has now become the basic identity and policy of the Indian government. Given the persecution of the weak, women and minorities in today’s India, the souls of Gotham, Nanak, Chishti and Kabir may surely be weeping blood.

India has long been proud of its democracy and secularism. Peaceful coexistence, tolerance and respect for the beliefs and customs of all religions is the only way but unfortunately India has not been able to get rid of racial, national, sectarian and religious prejudices. If India wants to play a leading role in the region and the world, it must be a model of love, forgiveness and compassion instead of hatred, narrow-mindedness and oppression.

Democracy and tolerance are essential for peace in India,l but the BJP and Modi are promoting hatred, Hindu nationalism and extremism for their political interests.

The Bharatiya Janata Party may have won the government twice with its narrative of hatred and extremism but the face of Indian secularism and democracy has got distorted in the process.

Indian Hindus, despite being a majority, consider themselves in danger. They are indulging in continuous false propaganda which is fueling fear, reactionary psyche and extremism in them. This is nothing short of a message of doom for India’s secular state, politics and pluralistic democracy.

Earlier, India was a secular society that prided itself in its diversity and plurality. Indian constitution also spoke of a secular India. Indian citizenship was available not on the basis of blood, caste and creed but on the basis of a person’s birth. Hindutva leaders existed in Indian society even before the formation of Pakistan and called India only the land of Hindus, but until 1980 they were in minority.

But the campaign for the demolition of the Babri Masjid and construction of the Ram Mandir in the 1990s turned the extremist BJP into a major party, it grew stronger and stronger as much as winning 282 seats in Parliament in 2014 and 303 in 2019.

When RSS activist Narendra Modi became Gujarat’s chief minister, 2,000 people were killed in government-sponsored anti-Muslim riots there. Due to the involvement of Modi government in this, the doors of America were closed on Modi.

It was a turning point on which the free world should have boycotted India altogether but all remained silent.

Modi and the BJP, in order to gain power, blamed Pakistan and Muslims for all the ills of India and thus spread hatred against them, spearheaded terror campaigns against them and declared preserving Hindu Dharma and making India a pure Hindu state as their main agenda.

For several years now, campaigns of hatred and extremism have been carried out with support of the Modi government, government agencies and popular news channels, and the courts are often sympathetic to this populist tide by making inappropriate and biased decisions or not hearing human rights appeals.

It is pertinent to mention that the BJP has appointed Chief Justice Ranjan Gokoi a member of the Rajya Sabha who ruled on the petitions filed in the Babri Masjid case and the Rafale warplane deal with France, which is a clear indication of conflict of interest. Many of his decisions have benefited Modi politically.

The journey towards intolerance, narrow-mindedness and violence in India has been going on for a long time. Since December 2019, the Modi government has let loose a reign of terror and oppression over Kashmiris and has turned Kashmir into jail since then.

Minorities and Dalits continue to be treated inhumanly in India. Here are a few examples.

In October, India’s popular jewelery company Tanshik ran a 45-second advertisement featuring an interfaith wedding, showing how a Muslim family performs Hindu rituals to please their pregnant Hindu daughter-in-law. An organized campaign called “Love Jihad” was immediately launched against the ad and threats were hurled at the company and the actors who worked in the ad. The company, hence, withdrew the advertisement within 24 hours for the safety of its workers.

In October, Amnesty International had to close its offices in India because of Indian government’s displeasure and outrage over its demands for transparency in government affairs, its scathing reports on police support for Hindu rioters in the anti-Muslim riots in Delhi and the role of the Indian government in rights violations in Kashmir and its briefing in the US Congress against the Indian government.

The Modi government wants to make India a one-party state. After his arrival, India has lost its tolerance for dissent and criticism and those who criticize the government are called traitors and agents of Pakistan.

A treason case has been registered against a professor at Delhi’s Jawaharlal Nehru University for speaking out against the Modi government’s discriminatory laws and he has been sent to jail.

Twenty-seven-year-old Kashmiri student Safora Zargar, who is pregnant, is also in jail for speaking out against the Citizenship Amendment Bill.

The prosecution also mentioned in the treason case against Sharjeel Imam that he was reading a book by Paul Brass, a well-known writer, which it said made him an extremist.

Many liberal leaders who spoke out against narrow-mindedness, such as MM Kalbergi, Narendra Dabholkar, Govind Pansari and Gauri Lankesh, were allegedly assassinated by right-wing Hindu extremists.

The BJP’s student wing targets liberal academics. Movies and books are banned. That is why the graph of civil liberties, freedom of expression, rule of law and academic freedom in India has come down almost three times since the formation of the Modi government.

In October, popular Indian actress Deepika Padukone was questioned by the Narcotics Control Board of India for six hours. The reason was apparently a drug investigation but in fact it was that Deepika had expressed solidarity with the student movement against the controversial citizenship law in January.

The move sent a message to her and other Bollywood workers toe the line. A BJP member in Parliament last month termed Bollywood as a drug den. A well-known actress said at this that it was an attempt to discredit and silence Bollywood because we have the potential to influence the masses.

On Gandhi’s birthday this year on January 30, a Hindu youth opened fire on a peaceful rally against the Citizenship Amendment Act at the Jamia Millia Islamia in Delhi. But the police stood by as silent spectators. Like last year’s New Zealand shooter, he showed some of his actions live on Facebook. In the cover photo, he stood with a sword and wrote in his feed that he wanted revenge on the protesters in Shaheen Bagh. He chanted slogans to kill traitors on Facebook and wrote that if he died killing nationalist opponents, his body must be covered with saffron.

In the Delhi election campaign, Anurag Thackeray, a minister in the Modi government, chanted slogans like “Shoot the traitors of the country” After that, Amit Shah, Modi’s expected successor, also told a public meeting that you should press the election button so angrily that the people of Shaheen Bagh come to know about it. It should be noted that Muslim women were protesting against the Citizenship Amendment Bill in Shaheen Bagh.

Obviously, this shooter was also motivated by the same hatred that led to Gandhi’s assassination. It may be recalled that a Hindu nationalist Nathuram Godse, who was an activist of the RSS –the ideological source of today’s BJP— assassinated Gandhi accusing him of showing leniency towards Muslims. Godse is now remembered as a martyr and hero of Hindu Dharma.

Protests by women against the controversial citizenship law were attacked in the Mojpur area of ​​Delhi, and BJP and RSS extremists and police joined forces to crack down on protesters, while Muslim houses, shops and vehicles were set on fire.

When Modi became the Prime Minister in 2014, he was very careful. He spoke of “all together and progress for all.” Although there was talk of a Hindu state and he did not condemn the anti-Muslim measures taken by Hindu extremists in the name of protecting “Gao Mata”, when he got an overwhelming majority in 2019, he took off all the veils and is now bent upon making India purely and completely a Hindu state.

Keeping the UN resolutions at bay and repealing Kashmir’s sovereign status in the Indian Constitution, the Modi government made it a normal part of India and turned Kashmir into a virtual prison. Nehru had said, “If Kashmiris do not want to live with us, let them go their own way and we shall go ours. We do not want forced marriages and forced unions.” But Modi ended Kashmir’s socalled autonomy in the Indian constitution and began working to turn the Muslim majority there into a minority.

In December 2019, India’s citizenship law was amended to allow aspirants for Indian citizenship from six neighboring countries but Muslims were excluded.

He then launched a national register campaign in various Indian states. It stoked fears of revoking the citizenship of those who converted from Hinduism to Islam.

The RSS has long been saying that India should be a Hindu state. It asks Muslims to convert to Hinduism again or leave India. It is defaming Muslims with propaganda of “Corona Jihad” and “Love Jihad”.

At present most Hindus in India hate or fear Muslims. The media in India is also engaged in spreading Islamophobia and appeasing the Modi government.

Subramanian Swamy, a BJP leader, termed Muslims a threat to India, refused to recognize them as equal citizens of Hindus and demanded that they be deprived of the right to vote. He said that a country with a Muslim population of more than 30% is always in danger.

Obviously, situation becomes extremely dangerous for minotities when there is so much hatred and intolerance in majority ranks for them.

That is why the well-known Indian writer and political activist Arun Dutti Rai also said a few months ago that the situation for Muslims in India is heading towards genocide.

All these incidents make it clear that India is on the path to becoming a Fascist state. We see how President Trump, in his hunger for power, has put American democracy under extreme stress and threat. Even his friend Modi has no concern for India’s international reputation and democratic features.

Well known Indian journalist Khushwant Singh had rightly said in a column that “a group formed on the basis of hatred maintains its existence by creating fear and terror. In India, those who consider themselves safe not being Sikhs and Muslims are living in fool’s paradise. Soon time will come when organizations born with the ideology of Hindu supremacy will be a threat to everyone except themselves.”

Popular newspapers such as The Economist, The Post, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, etc. have been sharply critical of Modi’s divisive agenda and intolerance but Modi’s stubbornness and populist extremist rhetoric is growing stronger. He speaks of Gandhi’s peaceful teachings abroad but is a propagandist of extremism at home. Recently, Modi called the newly elected US President Joe Biden. Biden’s team said, among other things, that the two leaders discussed their common vision for strengthening democracy at home and abroad. However, this part was missing in the pressnote issued by Modi’s office.

The writer is an academic and writer who can be contacted at tahirkatlang039@gmail.com

حالیہ پاک بھارت کشیدگی کے چند مظاہر

حالیہ پاک بھارت کشیدگی کے چند مظاہر

طاہرعلی خان

پاکستان اور ہندوستان کے درمیان حالیہ کشیدگی کے دوران جہاں چند افسوسناک چیزیں دیکھی گئیں وہاں کچھ قابل فخر مظاہر بھی سامنے آئے ہیں۔ پلوامہ میں ایک کشمیری نوجوان نے ایک فوجی کانواٸے پر خود کش حملہ کیا تو ہندوستانی حکومت اور ذراٸع ابلاغ کی اکثریت نے بلاتحقیق پاکستان کو مورد الزام ٹھہرانے اور اس کو سزا دینے کی باتیں شروع کردیں۔

بی جے پی حکومت بظاہر آٸندہ انتخابات میں پاکستان مخالف جذبات پیدا کرکے فاٸدہ اٹھانا چاہتی تھی چنانچہ ہندوستانی وزرإ اور صحافی منہ سے آگ برساتے رہے۔ یہ ایک غیر منصفانہ اورمعیوب طرزعمل تھا۔ ان کے برعکس پاکستانی وزرا، صحافی اور فوجی ترجمان وقار، تمکنت اور ہوش مندی کے قابل فخر نمونے دکھاٸی دیٸے۔ انہوں نے سرحد پار انتقام پر تلے پڑوسیوں کو جنگ کی تباہ کاریوں کا احساس بھی دلایا اور دلاٸل سے ان کے الزامات کو تہس نس بھی کر دیا۔

ہندوستانی حکومت نے جب پاکستان میں فضاٸی کاررواٸی کا مضحکہ خیز دعویٰ کیا تو اس کے بعد ان کے وزرا اور میڈیا نے پاکستان کا جس طرح مذاق اڑایا اور اپنے ”کارنامے“ پر جس طرح اتراتے رہے، وہ حد درجہ معیوب اور قابل افسوس تھا۔ اس کے برعکس پاکستان نے ان کے دو جہاز گراٸے اور پاٸلٹ پکڑا تو ان کی طرح شیخی خوری کے بجاٸے وقار و عاجزی دکھاٸی اور پاکستانی وزیراعظم نے پھر تحقیقات میں مدد اور امن مذاکرات کی پیشکش کا اعادہ کیا۔ یہ پاکستان کی اخلاقی فتح اور فخر کی بات تھی۔

اس پورے بحران کے دوران دنیا کی ”بڑی جمہوریت“ نے بریفنگ میں کسی صحافی کو سوال کرنے کا موقع نہیں دیا۔ اس کےبرعکس پاکستانی وزرإ اور فوج کے ترجمان ہر قسم کے سوال و جواب کے لیے دستیاب رہے۔ پاکستان یہاں بھی نکھر کر سامنے آیا۔

اگرچہ کٸ سال سے پاکستان باربار ہندوستان کو مذاکرات کی دعوت دیتا آرہا ہے لیکن ہندوستان رعونت سے مذاکرات سے انکار حتیٰ کہ پاکستان سے کھیلوں تک میں باٸیکاٹ پر اتر آیا۔

پاکستان نے پلوامہ حملے پر دکھ کا اظہار کیا اور تحقیقات میں مدد اور مذاکرات کی پیشکش کی تو ہندوستان نے اسے پاکستان کی کمزوری یا بزدلی گردانتے ہوٸے توجہ ہی نہیں دی اور انتقام انتقام کی لاگ الاپتا رہا۔ اس کے باوجود ہمارے وزرا اور فوجی ترجمان یاد لاتے رہے کہ جنگ میں صرف انسانیت ہی ہارتی ہے۔ یہ ایک باعزت قوم کا طرزعمل تھا۔

پاکستانی سپاہی مقبول حسین جو 1965 کی جنگ میں ہندوستان کا قیدی بنا تو اس کی زبان کاٹ دی گٸ اور جب 40 سال کے بعد وہ رہا ہوا تو جسمانی طور پر معذور تھا۔ اس کے برعکس پاکستانی فوج نے بھارتی پاٸلٹ ونگ کمانڈر ابھی نیندن کو عوام کے غیظ و غضب سے بچایا اور عزت دی۔ پاکستان یہاں بھی جیت گیا۔

اور اب امن اور خیر سگالی کے جذبے کے تحت پاکستانی وزیراعظم نے گرفتار بھارتی پاٸلٹ کو یکم مارچ سے رہا کرنے کا اعلان کردیا۔ یہ ریاست پاکستان اور سرحد کے دونوں جانب موجود امن پسندوں کی بڑی اخلاقی فتح ہے۔ لیکن اس اعلان کا خیر مقدم کرنے کے بجاٸے بعض ہندوستانی صحافی اسے پاکستان پر دباؤ کا نتیجہ قرار دیں یا کہیں کہ ہم نے پاکستان کو ابھی نیندن کو رہا کرنے پر مجبور کردیا ہے تو یہ ہندوستانی قوم کے لیے کوٸی قابل فخر طرزعمل نہیں ہے۔

پاکستان نے اپنے طرزعمل سے ثابت کردیا کہ یہ امن و انسانیت سے پیار کرنے والے، باعزت اور قومی سالمیت کےبارے میں حساس لوگوں کی سرزمین ہے۔ یہ جنگ سے نفرت کرتے ہیں لیکن اگر ان پر مسلط کی جاٸے تو اس میں کودنے کو سعادت سمجھتے ہیں۔ کیا وزیراعظم نریندر مودی کو ایسے پیارے پڑوسی کو دشمن کی جگہ غنیمت نہیں سمجھنا چاہیے؟

اس بحران کے دوران پاکستان کی پوری سیاسی ومذہبی قیادت، حزب اختلاف اور صحافی حکومت اور فوج کے پیچھے کھڑے رہے۔ یہ ایک قابل فخر مظہر ہے۔ اس میں موجودہ حکمران جماعت کے لیے بھی سبق ہے جو ماضی میں بعض ایسے مواقع پر قومی اتفاق راٸے دکھانے میں مانع رہی۔

موجودہ حزب اختلاف نے وزیراعظم عمران خان کو ہندوستان اپنا ایلچی بھیجنے پر، نہ ہی مذاکرات کی بار بار پیشکش پر اور نہ ہی غیر مشروط طور پر، بغیر وزیر اعظم مودی کی اپیل کے، اچانک گرفتار بھارتی پاٸلٹ کی رہاٸی کے اعلان پر غداری اور ملک دشمنی کا طعنہ دیا۔ یہ ایک قابل رشک روایت ہے۔ کیا برسراقتدار جماعت اس سے سیکھنے کے لیے تیار ہے؟

To PM Modi and India

To Modi and India

We remind you of wisdom and sense but find you always indulging yourself in suspense and nonsense.

We talk of poverty alleviation but your every act leads to tension aggravation.

We talk of construction but you conspire for destruction and obstruction.

We remind you of civility and responsibility but you only like vanity and insanity.

Byt Remember that he who hatches mischief is ultimately caught by mischief.

And that outbreak of war, like a devil, is easy to raise but difficult to lay and subdue.

Take pity on your morally and politically ailing and demoralized forces and civil population fed up with your interminable and insatiable love for blood.

But if you are not ready to heed our love for peace and bent on bringing havoc to your country and the region,

And consider our patience as weakness or cowardice, which it is not,

Then listen! you will come to grief when we respond but responsibility thereof will rest only at your shoulders.

So, step back, express a remorse over what you have done, seek forgiveness and behave as a normal human being.

Taken with edition and addition from FB wall of Prof Fazal Hanan

سعودی عرب، پاکستان اور ہندوستان

سعودی عرب، پاکستان اور ہندوستان

طاہر علی خان

سعودی عرب کے ولی عہد شہزادہ محمد بن سلمان کے حالیہ دورہ پاکستان میں سعودی عرب نے پاکستان میں 20 ارب ڈالر کی سرمایہ کاری کے مفاہمتی یادداشتوں پر دستخط کیے۔ اس کے بعد مگر ان کے دورہ ہندوستان میں سرکاری شعبے میں 28 ارب ڈالر کے مفاہمتی یادداشتوں پر دستخط سمیت سعودی عرب جنرل انوسمنٹ اتھارٹی نے ہندوستان کے نجی شعبے کے ساتھ اربوں ڈالرز کے 11 مزید مفاہمتی یادداشتوں پر دستخط کیے۔ شہزادہ محمد نے ہندوستان میں ایک تقریب میں یہ بھی کہا کہ اگلے دوسالوں میں انہیں سعودی عرب کی طرف سے ہندوستان میں 100 ارب ڈالر سے زیادہ کی سرمایہ کاری کے امکانات نظر آ رہے ہیں۔

یاد رہے ہندوستان اور سعودی عرب کے باہمی تجارت کا حجم 18۔ 2017 میں تقریباً 28 ارب ڈالر تھا جبکہ سعودی عرب ہندوستان کا چوتھا بڑا تجارتی پارٹنر بھی ہے۔ اس کے برعکس پاکستان اور سعودی عرب کے باہمی تجارت کا حجم محض 3.4 ارب ڈالر ہے۔ 2010 میں یہ حجم 4 ارب ڈالر تھا۔ سعودی عرب کی طرف سے پاکستان میں براہ راست غیرملکی سرمایہ کاری کا حجم پچھلے مالی سال میں صرف 17.4 ملین ڈالر تھا۔

شہزادہ محمد نے دورے کے دوران نہ صرف ہندوستانی وزیراعظم نریندر مودی کو اپنا بڑا بھائی قرار دیا بلکہ ان کی درخواست پر ہندوستان کا حج کوٹہ دو لاکھ تک بڑھانے اور سعودی عرب کی جیلوں میں قید تقریباً 900 ہندوستانیوں کو رہا کرنے کا اعلان بھی کردیا۔

ہمارے ہاں عام خیال ہے کہ پاکستان کو اہم گردانتے ہوئے ہی ولی عہد شہزادہ محمد نے خود کو سعودی عرب میں پاکستان کا سفیر قرار دیا جبکہ ہمارے وزیراعظم کی کرشماتی شخصیت ہی کی وجہ سے وہ پاکستان کا حج کوٹہ بڑھانے اور 2000 پاکستانیوں کو قید سے رہا کرنے پر آمادہ ہوئے تھے۔

کیا ہندوستان اور اس کے وزیراعظم نریندر مودی کو اتنی زیادہ اہمیت دینے کا مطلب یہ ہے کہ سعودی عرب اورجناب محمد بن سلمان کی نظر میں پاکستانی وزیر اعظم عمران خان اور ان کے ہندوستانی منصب مودی یا پاکستان اور ہندوستان یکساں مقام رکھتے ہیں؟

اور یہ اس کے باوجود کہ پاکستان ان کا ایک برادر اسلامی ملک اور ہندوستان مسلمانوں کے دشمن اسرائیل کا قریبی دوست، کشمیر کے لاکھوں مسلمانوں کا قاتل اور ”کافروں“ کاملک ہے ؟ اگرچہ ہمارے انقلابی یہ بات نہیں مانتے لیکن حقیقت یہ ہے کہ سب ممالک اپنے بین الاقوامی تعلقات مذہبی رشتے نہیں بلکہ اپنے مفادات کی بنیاد پر بناتے اور رکھتے ہیں۔ دوسرے ممالک ہماری طرح بیگانی شادی میں عبداللہ دیوانہ نہیں ہوتے۔ جہاں سے بھی ان کو فائدہ ملتا ہو اس ملک یا ممالک سے راہ و رسم بڑھانا اور تجارت کرنا ان کے حکمران اپنا قومی فریضہ سمجھتے ہیں۔

اس میں کوئی شک نہیں کہ سعودی عرب نے تقریباً ہر تکلیف اور ضرورت کے وقت پاکستان کی مدد کی ہے اور وہاں موجود پاکستانی تارکین وطن ہر سال تقریباً 5 ارب ڈالرز کا زرمبادلہ بھیجتے ہیں لیکن پاکستان نے بھی تقریباً ہر مسئلے پر ان کا ساتھ دیا ہے۔ پاکستانی تارکین وطن نے سعودی عرب کی جدید تعمیر و ترقی میں اہم کردار ادا کیا جبکہ پاکستانی فوج نے ان کی فوجی استعداد بڑھانے اور دفاع کو یقینی بنانے کے لیے خود کو وقف کیا ہوا ہے۔ یعنی اس تعلق میں دونوں کا ہی فائدہ تھا اور ہے اس لیے یہ برقرار رہا اور پروان چڑھتا رہا۔ اس کی کوئی دوسری وجہ نہیں۔

تاہم پاکستان کے لیے ان کے دورہ ہندوستان میں خوشی کی خبر یہ ہے کہ ہندوستان کی خواہش کے باوجود شہزادہ محمد نے اپنے دورے کے دوران یا اختتام پر سرکاری اعلامیہ میں پاکستان یا اس کی کسی تنظیم کو پلوامہ حملے میں موردالزام ٹھہرانے سے اجتناب برتا۔ اس کے برعکس اعلامیہ میں مودی نے ان کے ساتھ مان لیا کہ

”The two sides stressed the importance of regional stability and good neighbouring relations۔ “

یعنی دونوں ملکوں نے علاقائی استحکام اور اچھے پڑوسی تعلقات کی اہمیت پر زور دیا۔
وزیراعظم مودی جس انداز میں پاکستان کے خلاف بولتے ہیں اس کو مدنظر رکھتے ہوئے اس اعلامیہ پر دستخط ان کے لیے یقیناً ایک سخت مشکل اور ناخوشگوار فیصلہ ہوا ہوگا۔

West’s Double Standards

West’s Double Standards: An Unending threat for the World?



When the Syrian regime was accused of using chemical weapons in Syria in April this year, US President Trump immediately issued a tweet describing the Syrian President Basharul Asad as “an animal” who gassed his own people.

And when anti-government demonstrations erupted in several Iranian cities earlier this year, the US ambassador to UN Nikki Haley was quick to embrace their cause. “The Iranian regime’s contempt for the rights of its people has been widely documented for many years,” she told the UN Security Council session.

However, the US, conversely, has been keeping mum over human rights violations perpetrated by its allies; Saudi Arabia, Israel and Egypt. The US, instead, supported them with money, weapons and deals despite their anti-democracy agendas and ruthless suppression of political opponents. The United States even continues to assist Saudi Arabia in its atrocity-ridden military intervention in Yemen.

As Israel’s biggest ally, the US has used its UN Security Council veto dozens of times to protect the Jewish state from resolutions condemning illegal settlements to violence against Palestinians.

Most of the big powers take pains to portray themselves as humane, lovers and protectors of rights and democracy, yet the reality is quite different. They often indulge themselves in double standards and selective morality, unmatched with their known commitments to justice and liberties.

Read more: Syrian imbroglio

The United States, particularly, has been supporting extremely repressive regimes like the Shah of Iran, Nicaragua’s Somoza family, Taiwan’s Chiang Kai-shek, and Egypt’s Hosni Mubarak and military dictators like Egypt’s Abdul Fatah Alsisi and Pakistan’s Zia-ul-haq. The discriminatory US policy on intended Indian and Pakistani membership in the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) is another classic case of double standard.

Pakistan and India applied for NSG membership in 2016. Though the signing of Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) is a prerequisite for entry and India is yet to sign it, the US is spearheading efforts to waiver the NPT- signing exemption for India. And the United States has added seven Pakistani companies to a list of foreign entities that are subject to stringent export control measures, a move that could hamper Pakistan’s bid to join NSG.

The US has also signed nuclear deal with India but Pakistan has been denied the same deal. The pact between the US and India exempts military facilities and stockpiles of nuclear fuel from scrutiny by the International Atomic Energy agency which has enabled India to sign nuclear cooperation agreements with Japan, Russia, France, Britain, South Korea, Canada, Argentina, Kazakhstan, Mongolia, and Namibia.

India rejects this line, insisting Kashmir is a bilateral dispute between the two countries.

The abuse of Veto power

The constitution of the UN Security Council is anything but justice. There is no equality of opportunity to every member state. Veto power given to big powers, therein gives undue leverage to them in getting things done as against the smaller ones. Which means that if any P-5 member or its ally is the aggressor or wrongdoer, no adverse action is possible against it as the P-5 member vetoes any such move. As Israel’s biggest ally, the US has used its UN Security Council veto dozens of times to protect the Jewish state from resolutions condemning illegal settlements to violence against Palestinians.

Read more: Germany’s Syria Strategy

While Israel is allowed to stockpile loads of nuclear arms and no hostile military action is initiated against it even if it blatantly and arrogantly rejects UN resolutions on halt of extension in settlements, Iraq is attacked and its cities turned into heaps of debris under the false pretext that it’s preparing/piling weapons of mass destruction despite report to the contrary by UN inspectors who had been deputed there.

And while there is continuous silence on blatant heinous human violations by “allies” such as Israel, there is a strong reaction to similar incidents perpetrated by “others” such as Saddam Hussain’s era Iraq.

Selective morality and double standards

And it is nothing but double standard and selective morality if Israel that openly violates/rejects international laws, UN resolutions and any serious effort for peaceful solution of its issues with Palestinians is equated with/ preferred over Palestinians whose lands have been usurped and who are being displaced and denied human rights.

Veto power given to big powers, therein gives undue leverage to them in getting things done as against the smaller ones.

Catalonia’s recent example, where Spain arrested an elected leader Carles Puidgemont for holding a separatist referendum, is ironic how the western world, across Europe, has united to extradite an elected Spanish leader, with popular mandate, yet is often seen providing asylums (and perhaps other help) to violent insurgent leaders from Baloch insurgency in Pakistan.

Read more: Wrath for separatists in Spain but sympathy for Baloch insurgents from Pakistan: Europe’s Double Standards?

Another example is their take on Pak- India relations. With both being nuclear powers, a war between the two can have dangerous repercussions for global peace. But the US and  Britain famously urge Pakistan and India to resolve their issues through mutual negotiations.

As India is not ready to talk to Pakistan, accusing Pakistan of state terrorism, Pakistan rightly urges major powers for mediation on Kashmir. India rejects this line, insisting Kashmir is a bilateral dispute between the two countries.

When the US and Britain insist India and Pakistan should resolve their dispute through mutual dialogue and refuse to mediate or condemn India for its atrocities in Kashmir, they are actually toeing Indian lines.

An extremist Hindu fundamentalist party, is voted to power with a clear majority in the 2014 Indian General Elections

It is but injustice if India which is clearly the wrongdoer being violator of several UN resolutions on Kashmir and whose leaders openly admit helping breaking up Pakistan in 1971 and vowing to drying up Pakistan against all international norms – is treated at par with Pakistan -which is trying its level best to bring India to the negotiation table for resolution of its disputes with it though unsuccessfully so far.

Read more: Russia, Turkey, Iran to hold Syria talks

One fails to understand how can Pakistan and India resolve their disputes peacefully and through mutual discussions when India is not ready to talk to Pakistan and powerful nations are silent spectators lest any offer for mediation or any criticism of perpetrated state-violence by India in Kashmir displease India – a big economic market.

The US and Britain say they are perturbed over violence in Kashmir and urge patience. It is welcome but what is objectionable is when the oppressor is not asked to refrain from using brute force against the peaceful demonstrators and the unarmed oppressed Kashmiri civilians are not openly supported in their fight for self-determination allowed and promised to them by UN resolutions in 1948, 1949 and by the Indian leadership till 1957 before Kashmir was made an integral part of Indian federation.

Stereotyping Muslim Nations

Another example of this double standard is the stereotype mindset that eyes all Muslim nation/states as extremists. Never has any extremist political or religious group obtained absolute majority in any Muslim country in any general elections. Such groups either don’t have the courage to take part and if they do, they have the lowest popular support base, often standing at less than one percent.

Iraq is attacked and its cities turned into heaps of debris under the false pretext that it’s preparing/piling weapons of mass destruction despite report to the contrary by UN inspectors who had been deputed there.

While Pakistan is considered an intolerant and extremist society, no  extremist group ever has obtained absolute majority here. For example, the Jamat-e-Islami Pakistan, an Islamic fundamentalist party, obtained only 0.4 percent of the total polled 46 million votes in the 2013 elections while Pakistan Muslim League-N, Pakistan People’s Party and Pakistan Tehreek Insaf having tolerant, democratic and anti-extremism credentials jointly polled around 30 million of the total votes.

Read more: Syrian government forces announce Yarmouk camp evacuation agreement

But India is considered one of the biggest democratic and liberal society in the world despite the fact that Prime Minister Narendara Modi’s Bharatia Janata Party, an extremist Hindu fundamentalist party, is voted to power with a clear majority in the 2014 Indian General Elections –it contested on 437 seats of the total 543 seats in the LoK Sabha and grabbed 282 seats, polling over 31 percent of the total polled votes.

The US and other states may have plausible arguments and reasons for persisting in such double standards. But they need to be candid and acknowledge that their decisions are based on cold calculations of national interest, not ethical considerations. They should at least spare us the pretense that they care about human rights and liberties.

Tahir Ali Khan is an academic with over 28 years experience and blogger. He has written over 700 articles. He blogs at http://www.tahirkatlang.wordpress.com and can be reached at tahirkatlang039@gmail.com

Pak-US ties: A tale of one-sided love

Pak-US relations: A tale of one-sided love
By Tahir Ali Khan


Pakistan is an ally of the US in the War on Terror (WoT). Despite having done more than any other ally in the WoT, it is accused of not having done enough to wipe out terrorism.
Feeling neglected, Pakistan has responded with its improved relations and alliance with China and Russia. And it now says it has done enough and it is the US that has to do more now on that front.
A comparative study of what Pakistan and the USA have been doing for each other show the relationship has been a sad story of one-sided love.
Ignoring the former Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR)’s invitation for a visit in 1951, Pakistan’s then Prime Minister Liaqat Ali Khan flew to the USA. In 1956, President Dwight Eisenhower requested Pakistani Prime Minister Mr Suhrawardy to lease Peshawar Air Station to the American Army for keeping an eye on the USSR and its ballistic missile programme. Pakistan accepted. All this annoyed the Communist regime. It threw its entire weight later in India’s favour, armed it tooth and nail and supported it abundantly.
Pakistan opted for the US and the “Free World” but had been left to tackle eventualities on its own. It joined the SEATO and CENTO thinking that the US/West would come to its rescue but it did quite the opposite. In 1965, when India attacked Pakistan, the USA, instead of supporting it militarily or financially being an ally, slapped sanctions on supply of military equipments to Pakistan. And in 1971, USA’s Seventh Fleet “couldn’t arrive in time” to defend it against USSR supported Indian aggression leading to its dismemberment.
Pakistan had successfully negotiated a deal between USA and China in 70’s. A Chinese leader during these parleys had reportedly told the US envoy not to neglect Pakistan but the US quickly abandoned its ally and silently allowing India to dismember it with the support of the USSR.
In April 1979, the US administration that had whole-heartedly supported the Israeli atomic programme and the “Jewish” Bomb, accusing Pakistan of trying to have an “Islamic” Bomb and citing military dictatorship, imposed sanctions on Pakistan.
However a few months later, when it needed Pakistan’s help against the Red forces in Afghanistan, the US changed course, forgot about dictatorship and the “Islamic Bomb” and sent Dr. Berznisky with a package to Pakistan. Pakistan fought for the West. But when their interests were safeguarded with the defeat and withdrawal of USSR from there, the US/the west left it to bear the sinister aftermath of the militancy alone. Agonisingly, the threat of Pakistan’s nuclear programme surfaced again. And in 1990, as the country by then had lost its strategic importance, the US, under the Pressler amendment, imposed sanctions on Pakistan, whereby every kind of military assistance was banned again to Pakistan. During those years, it did everything to deprive Pakistan of its indigenous nuclear and missile development programme.
This US indifference and double standards with Pakistan continued until the tragedy of 9/11 again made vital Pakistan’s help. Musharraf, the very man who was not entitled to a Photo-session with the US President for being a dictator, became their ‘friend’ overnight. All sanctions were lifted against Pakistan. Pakistan jumped into the WoT. But even then it was made just Non-NATO ally. While Pakistan was denied any atomic energy, with India a civilian nuclear deal was finalised.
The US administration was so selfish vis-à-vis Pakistan that though Pakistan had paid for F16s aircrafts, it neither handed over the F16s to it nor returned the money it had paid for them. Instead, it took from it the maintenance expenditures for these F16s which were held back by the US for sanctions.
Pakistan has come to help/rescue the US twice in Afghanistan. In 1980s, it joined hands with it to defeat the invaders –the USSR. In 2001, it supported it though the US was itself an invader. Then it fought the puppet regime in Kabul; now it supports their ‘puppet regime’ there. Then, they dubbed ‘Mujahideen’ as freedom fighters and Pakistan accepted. Now they dub them terrorists and it accepts even now. Pakistan allowed American army to use its military bases for launching attacks on Afghan soil.
Pakistan even killed its citizens the US considered as its enemies. The US said Dr. Abdul Qadeer is “guilty” of nuclear proliferation and he was immediately put under house arrest. Pakistan even arrested Mulla Zaeef- Afghanistan’s ambassador to Pakistan- for the US for the first time ever in world’s history. It had arrested more than 500 top Alqaeda associates and handed them over to it. Alqaeda since then has attacked Pakistani leaders frequently. Alqaeda had done no harm to Pakistan till then. Pakistan became their enemy when it supported the US in WoT.
The WoT and the resultant militancy and terrorism have badly impacted Pakistan’s economy. Careful estimates put the overall loss at around $120bn. It has resulted into the deaths of thousands of its valiant security personnel and civilians in terrorist acts. But despite all this, it openly questions Pakistan’s commitment to WoT and is still far from being satisfied.
Pakistan arrests and kills the enemies of the US –like Alqaeda, Daesh and Afghan Taliban –considering them its own enemies. But the US openly befriends Pakistan’s enemies and renders them every diplomatic, military, scientific and financial help. It has had ignored and didn’t target the militants fighting against Pakistan until recently. It attacks its territory (the Silala attack), meddles in its internal affairs and thus creates problems for its leaders.
Pakistan needs to be dealt fairly and respectfully as an ally. The policy of doubting its intentions and demanding more from Pakistan will hardly do the US any favour. It only will push Pakistan away towards more reliable allies in China and Russia.

Tahir Ali Khan is an academic and researcher. He blogs at http://www.tahirkatlang.wordpress.com and can be reached at tahirkatlang039@gmail.com

کلبھوشن، ویانا کنونشن اور اقوام متحدہ کا چارٹر

کلبھوشن، ویانا کنونشن اور اقوام متحدہ کا چارٹر

طاہرعلی خان


بین الاقوامی عدالت انصاف کی طرف سے کلبھوشن یادیو کیس میں عبوری فیصلے پر پاکستان میں لوگ اپنی سمجھ بوجھ اور سیاسی وابستگی کی روشنی میں تبصرے کر رہے ہیں۔ کوئی اسے جندال کے دورے سے جوڑ رہا ہے، کسی کے خیال میں پاکستانی وکلاء ٹیم کی کارکردگی مایوس کن تھی، کوئی کہتا ہے پاکستان کووہاں جانا ہی نہیں چاہیے تھا اور کسی کے مطابق بین الاقوامی عدالت انصاف کے فیصلے ماننا لازم نہیں اس لئے کلبھوشن کو فوراً پھانسی چڑھالینا چاہیے۔

پاکستانی وکلاء کی عالمی عدالت میں کارکرگی اور وزیراعظم نواز شریف اوران کے دوست بھارتی تاجر سجن جندال کی ملاقات سے اس کو جوڑنے والے نکات پر ایک سے زیادہ رائے ہو سکتی ہیں۔

اقوام متحدہ کے چارٹر کی دفعہ ۹۴ کے مطابق بظاہر اس بات میں وزن دکھائی دیتا ہے کہ پاکستان کے پاس یہ اختیار تھا کہ وہ عالمی عدالت نہ جاتا تو پھر اس کا فیصلہ ماننے کا پابند نہ ہوتا۔ اب چونکہ دانستگی یا نادانستگی میں پاکستان عالمی عدالت میں چلا گیا ہے اس لیے اس پر مزید بات کرنے کا کوئی فائدہ نہیں تاہم آخری نکتہ کہ عالمی عدالت کے فیصلے بائینڈنگ نہیں اس لیے اب کلبھوشن کو پھانسی دے دینی چاہیے، متعلقہ قوانین اور بین الاقوامی ذمہ داریوں سے واضح لاعلمی پر مبنی ہیےاس لیے اس کی وضاحت ضروری ہے۔

اقوام متحدہ کے چارٹر کی دفعہ ۹۴ کےالفاظ یہ ہیں۔ ‘‘اقوام متحدہ کا ہر ممبر وعدہ کرتاہے کہ وہ ہر اس کیس میں عالمی عدالت انصاف کے فیصلے پر عمل کرےگا جس میں وہ فریق ہے۔ اگر کیس کا کوئی فریق عالمی عدالت کے فیصلے کے تحت عائد ذمہ داریوں کو پورا کرنے میں ناکام ہوجاتا ہے تو دوسرا فریق سیکورٹی کونسل سے رجوع کر سکتا ہےجو اگر ضروری سمجھے تو فیصلے پرعمل درآمد کے لئے سفارشات تجویز یا اقدامت کا فیصلہ کرسکتا ہے۔’’ چارٹر کی اس دفعہ کا انگریزی متن یہ ہے۔

UN Charter Article 94

  1. Each Member of the United Nations undertakes to comply with the decision of the International Court of Justice in any case to which it is a party.
  2. If any party to a case fails to perform the obligations incumbent upon it under a judgment rendered by the Court, the other party may have recourse to the Security Council, which may, if it deems necessary, make recommendations or decide upon measures to be taken to give effect to the judgment.

یہ بات تو واضح ہے کہ اب اس فیصلے سے روگردانی ممکن نہیں کیونکہ پاکستان امریکہ جیسی طاقت نہیں رکھتا جس نے کم ازکم دو مرتبہ عالمی عدالت کے اسی طرح کے فیصلوں کے باوجود ملزموں کو پھانسی چڑھا دیا تھا اور کوئی اس کا کچھ نہ بگاڑ سکا تاہم پاکستان کے پاس راستہ کھلا ہے کہ وہ عالمی عدالت سے کلبھوشن کیس کا حتمی فیصلے اپنے حق میں کروانے کے لیے خوب تیاری کرے۔ اس کے لیے چند نکات پیش خدمت ہیں۔

ہندوستان نے ویانا کنونشن کی دفعہ ۳۶ کی روشنی میں پاکستان پر کلبھوشن تک قونصلر رسائی نہ دینے اوراسکی گرفتاری سے بروقت مطلع نہ کرنے پر مقدمہ کیا اور آفشنل پروٹوکول کے آرٹیکل ۱ کی بنیاد پر مطالبہ کیا تھا کہ عالمی عدالت انصاف ویانا کنوشن کے مفہوم اور اطلاق سے پیدا ہونے والے تنازعات پرچونکہ فیصلے دینے کا لازمی دائرۂ اختیار رکھتا ہےا س لیے وہ کلبھوشن کے مقدمے کو سنے تاہم پاکستان نے کہا کہ بھارت اور پاکستان کے مابین ۲۰۰۸ میں قونصلر رسائی کا ایک معاہدہ ہوا تھا جس کی دفعہ ۶ کے مطابق سیاسی اور سیکورٹی بنیادوں پر گرفتاری، حراست اور سزا کی صورت میں ہر ریاست کو کیس کی میرٹ پر خود فیصلہ کرنے کا اختیار دیا گیا ہے۔

دیکھنا یہ ہے کہ آیا ۲۰۰۸ کا یہ پاک بھارت معاہدہ اقوام متحدہ کے چارٹر کے آرٹیکل۱۰۲ کے شق ا کے مطابق اقوام متحدہ کے ساتھ رجسٹرڈ کیا گیا تھا یا نہیں۔ اگرہاں تو پھر پاکستان کا کیس مضبوط ہے تاہم اسے یہ ثابت کرنا ہوگا کہ کلبھوشن ایک غیرقانونی مداخلت کار اور جاسوس ہے۔ اگریہ رجسٹرڈ نہیں تو اسی آرٹیکل کے شق ۲ کے مطابق اقوام متحدہ کے کسی عضو کے سامنے ایسے کسی معاہدے سے مدد نہیں لی جا سکتی۔

انڈیا نے اگر یہی لائن لے لی تو پھراگر پاکستان کشمیر میں بھارتی فورسز کے ہاتھوں انسانی حقوق کی پامالیوں پرعالمی عدالت انصاف میں کیس کرلیتا ہے تو انڈیا بھی شملہ معاہدے کی آڑنہیں لے سکے گا کہ یقیناً یہ بھی اقوام متحدہ کےساتھ رجسٹرڈ نہیں کیا گیا ہوگا۔

تاہم ویانا کنونشن کے آپشنل پروٹوکول کے آرٹیکل ۱سے پہلے چند الفاظ آئے ہیں جن کی بنیاد پر پاکستان اپنا کیس بنا سکتاہے۔۔‘‘جب تک ایک معقول وقت کے اندر فریقین تصفیہ کی کسی اور شکل پرمتفق نہ ہوں، وہ کنوشن کی تفہیم یا اطلاق سے پیدا ہونےکسی بھی تنازع پر بین الاقوامی عدالت انصاف سے رجوع کرنے کی خواہش کا اظہارکرتے ہیں’’۔ یہ معقول وقت کیاہے اور تصفیہ کی اور شکلیں کیا ہیں؟ اور یہ کہ اس کے بغیر کیا کوئی فریق براہ راست عالمی عدالت میں جا سکتا ہے؟

اس کنونشن کے آرٹیکل ۲ کے مطابق‘‘فریقین چاہیں، تواس کے بعد کہ ایک فریق نے دوسرے کو اطلاع دے دی ہو کہ تنازع موجود ہے، دو مہینے کے اندر اندر عالمی عدالت نہیں بلکہ کسی ثالثی ٹریبیونل سے رجوع کرنے پر متفق ہو جائیں۔ اس مدت کے اختتام پر کوئی بھی فریق ایک درخواست سے اس تنازع کو عالمی عدالت میں لا سکتا ہے’’۔

اس کنونشن کے آرٹیکل ۳ کے ذیلی شق ۱کے مطابق اسی دو مہینے کی مدت میں فریقین چاہیں تو عالمی عدالت سے رجوع کرنے سے پیشتر اصلاح و تصفیہ کے کسی طریق کار پر رضامند ہوں۔ شق دو کے مطابق یہ مفاہمتی کمیشن اپنی تقرری کے پانچ ماہ کے اندر اندر اپنی رپورٹ دے گا۔ اگر اس کمیشن کی سفارشات کو کوئی فریق دو ماہ کے اندر اندر قبول نہ کرے تو دوسرا فریق ایک درخواست کے ذریعے عالمی عدالت کے سامنے یہ تنازعہ لاسکتا ہے۔ دیکھنا یہ ہے کہ عالمی عدالت میں جانے سے قبل یہ شرائط ہندوستان نے پوری کی تھیں۔ کیا اس نے پاکستان کے ساتھ کسی ٹریبیونل یا مفاہمتی کمیشن کے لئے بات کرنے کی خواہش اور کوشش کی تھی؟ اگر نہیں تو وہ اس کنونشن کے تحت براہ راست رجوع کرنے کا حق نہیں رکھتا اور پاکستان کو پرزور انداز میں یہ دلیل پیش کرنی چاہیے۔

پاکستان کہتا ہے کلبھوشن ایک جاسوس ہے جو دہشت گردی کرانے غیرقانونی طریقے سے بھیس بدل کر پاکستان میں داخل ہوا تھا اور اسے ویانا کنونشن کے تحت حقوق نہیں دیے جا سکتے جبکہ انڈیا اسے ایک بےگناہ ہندوستانی گردانتا ہے جس کو قونصلر رسائی اور قانونی امداد کے حقوق حاصل ہیں۔ اب ایک طرف ویانا کنونشن ہے اور دوسری طرف اقوام متحدہ کا چارٹر جو دوسرے ممالک کے اقتداراعلیٰ اور سالمیت کے احترام اور ان کے اندرونی امور میں مداخلت کی اجازت نہیں دیتا۔ ایک طرف ہندوستان کی ویانا کنونشن کے تحت ذمہ داریاں ہیں اور دوسری طرف اقوام متحدہ کے تحت۔ ان میں کس کو فوقیت دی جائیگی؟ اقوام متحدہ کے چارٹر کے آرٹیکل ۱۰۳ کا اس سلسلے میں فیصلہ یہ ہے۔ ‘‘اقوام متحدہ کے ارکان کی اس موجودہ چارٹر یا کسی دوسرے بین الاقوامی معاہدے کے تحت ذمہ داریوں پر کوئی اختلاف واقع ہو جائے تو اس چارٹر کی تحت ان کی ذمہ داریوں کو فوقیت حاصل رہے گی۔’’

کیا اقوام متحدہ کا چارٹر عالمی ادارے کے ممبران کو ایک دوسرے کے اندر مداخلت یا جاسوسی کرنے یا ایسا کرنے والوں کی مدد یا پشت پناہی کی اجازت دیتا ہے؟

Writer’s intro

طاہرعلی خان فری لانس صحافی ہیں، رواداری ، احترام انسانیت اور امن کے پرچارک ہیں اور ان مقاصد کے حصول کے لیے ۔    کے نام سے بلاگ بھی رکھتے ہیں ۔ www.tahirkatlang.wordpress.com لکھتے ہیں. وہ

Biogas plants to meet fuel, energy shortage

Focus on biogas plants

Over 4,000 biogas plants were installed between 1974 and 1987. But with the withdrawal of official financial support, the pace was slowed down and since then only 6,000 plants were installed till 2006. – File photo

To meet the domestic fuel and bio-fertiliser needs, 3,680 biogas plants are planned to be set up in rural areas by June 2012, according to Pakistan Centre for Renewable Technologies.

The Centre says that over 2,100 family-size biogas plants — against the target of 2,500 — have already been set up throughout the country.

The programme, supported by NGOs, farmers’ bodies and the rural support programme netwok, is being implemented by Pakistan Biogas Development Enterprise.

The construction of 30,000 biogas installations planned for next four years will be funded by the four provinces including Khyber Pakhtunkhwa with an investment of Rs2.7 billion. A sum of Rs244 million will be disbursed as investment rebate support to households.

Often animal waste is usually not used productively. In Landhi alone, a suburb of Karachi city, around 0.35 million cattle heads are kept in a three kilometre area that produces thousands of tons of waste but 80-90 per cent of it is thrown into the sea. A Canadian firm Highmark Renewables and the KESC jointly intend to set up a biogas plant at a cost of around $70 million which would produce 30 megawatts of electricity besides 400 tons of residue bio-fertiliser.

The biogas plants will considerably decrease the domestic fuel cost. Moreover, biogas will contribute towards environment protection, sustenance of ecosystem and conservation of biodiversity.

According to PCRT gas produced in a small bio-digester which contains about 20 kg dung should be enough to meet the fuel needs of a small family. A bio-digester for any number of animals can be designed. However, the plant must be water/gas-tight and enough manure and water should be added to it every day.

Biogas plants are fairly popular worldwide. There are almost two million biogas plants in India and the facilities have been built even in the United Kingdom and the US through official patronage. Around 89 such plants in the US are consuming 13 per cent or 95,000 tons of waste to produce about 25,000 megawatt of electricity that is sufficient for 2.3 million households.’

There is a huge potential for production of biogas in the country. There are currently around 47 million big animals in Pakistan. Even if 50 per cent of their drop is collected, availability of fresh dung comes to 233 million kg a day that can produce around 12 million cubic meters of biogas per day. The fuel requirement of over 20 per cent of the population could be met only from biogas. It will also produce 19 million tons of bio-fertiliser per year.

Around 70 per cent of population in Khyber Pukhtunkhwa lives in rural areas. Most farmers have two or more cattle head whose dung mixed with an equal quantity of water can be used to produce biogas. Any farmer having at least three animals can set up this plant with a one-time investment of Rs40,000 —50,000.

If individual farmers cannot afford the cost, a few families with domestic animals could jointly install such a plant in their neighbourhood. And by selling the gas to families that do not contribute manure for having no animals, the maintenance expenditure, if any, could be financed with this money.

Over 4,000 biogas plants were installed between 1974 and 1987. But with the withdrawal of official financial support, the pace was slowed down and since then only 6,000 plants were installed till 2006. Firewood, dung and crop residues are major sources of energy for rural and low-income urban households. In 1992, firewood provided fuel to about 60 per cent such households followed by dung in dry form at around 18 per cent. To save deforestation, biogas gas is a viable alternative.


After a few mistakes were spotted in the above printed version of the article, the original text of the article is hereby reproduced.

Biogas plants to reduce deforestation and domestic fuel budget

By Tahir Ali

Under the project “development and promotion of biogas technology for meeting domestic fuel needs of rural areas and production of bio-fertilizer”, the Pakistan centre for renewable energy technologies (Pcret) plans to install 368 biogas plants in rural areas by June 2012.

Launched in 2008 with a target of 2500 such plants, Pcret has already installed over 2100 family size biogas plants in different parts of the country.

Earlier, based on a feasibility study, a programme implementation plan for domestic biogas of Pakistan was finalised with the support of rural support programmes network, NGOs and farmers organisations and is implemented by Pakistan biogas development enterprise. Though it, the construction of 30,000 biogas installations in 4 years will be supported in four provinces including Khyber Pakhtunkhwa with a total investment of Rs2.7bn. Rs244mn would be disbursed as investment rebate support to the households who spend on the technology.

However, the potential is too enormous to be satisfied with this number. Animal waste is usually wasted (see picture). In Landhi Karachi alone, around 0.35mn cattle-heads are kept in a 3km area that produce thousands of tons of waste but 80-90 of it is thrown in the sea. A Canadian firm Highmark Renewables with the help of KESC plans to establish world’s biggest biogas plant at a cost of around $70 million that would produce up to 30 mega watt of power and 400 tons of residue bio fertiliser.

With inflation and energy shortage and costliness aggravating with each passing day in the country, biogas plants could considerably decrease the domestic fuel budget and lessen burden on national power grid. Moreover, biogas will also contribute towards environment protection, sustenance of ecosystem and conservation of biodiversity.

According to a Pcret report, a family size biogas plant annually 10056Kg wood or 22200 Kg animal dung or 1104 lit kerosene oil or 540 kg L.P.G or 9000 Kwh of electricity.

Gas produced in a small bio-digester which contains about 20 kg of dung should be enough to meet the fuel requirement of a small family. Based on these calculations, a bio-digester for any number of animals can be designed.  However, the plant must be water/gas-tight. Enough manure and water must be added to it every day.

Biogas plants are fairly popular in Pakistan’s neighbourhood and even developed countries. There are almost two million bio-gas plants in India and the facilities have been built even in UK and USA through official patronage. Around 89 such plants in the US are consuming 13 per cent or 95000 tons of waste to produce about 2500 mega watt of electricity that suffices for 2.3mn households.’

Despite its simplicity and huge potential, the production of biogas has not been given due attention in Pakistan. There are currently around 47 million big animals in Pakistan. A medium size animal drops around 10 kg of dung per day. Even if its 50 percent is collected, the availability of fresh dung comes to 233 million kg a day that can produce around 12 million cubic meters of biogas a day. Since 0.4m gas could suffice the cooking needs of a million Pakistanis, the fuel requirement of over 20 percent of them could be met only from biogas. It will also produce 19 million tons of bio-fertilizer per year, which can boost agricultural productivity.

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa too, despite having one million camels, 6mn cattle, 2mn buffaloes and over 12mn sheep and goats, has failed to utilise the waste of these animals to produce biogas which can be used for cooking and power generation and its residue could be used as fertiliser and which has the potential to reduce both the fuel bill and deforestation in the country.

In the cattle breeding and dairy farm in Charsadda, a bio gas plant has been in operation but the innovative technology has not been disseminated on mass scale in the province.

It seems strange as to why to reduce the speed and scale of deforestation especially in the forest-rich Malakand and Hazara divisions, biogas plants have not been installed or the attention of the locals not drawn towards this enormously fruitful and cheap source of energy so far.

Around 70 percent population in the province lives in the rural areas. Most farmers have two or more cattle whose dung mixed with an equal proportion of water can be used to produce biogas. Any farmer having at least three animals can establish this plant with a one-time investment of Rs40,000 to 50,000.

If individual farmers are not ready or cannot afford the expenses, a few families with domestic animals could jointly install such a plant in their neighbourhood. And by selling the gas to families that cannot contribute manure daily for having no animals, the maintenance expenditure, if any, could be financed with this money.

The government needs to announce more attention and funds to spread this technology to countryside. Media should create awareness among the rural community and NGOs and foreign investors should be encouraged to spread it.

Over 4000 biogas plants were installed in Pakistan by the government between 1974 and 1987. But later it withdrew the financial support which reduced the growth rate of this technology and only 6,000 plants were installed till 2006 since then.

A typical biogas plant consists of a digester where the anaerobic fermentation takes place, a gasholder for collecting the biogas, the input-output units for feeding the influent and storing the effluent respectively, and a gas distribution system.

Firewood, dung and crop residues are major sources of energy for rural and low-income urban households. In 1992, firewood provided fuel to at about 60% of rural and low income families followed by dung in dry form at around 18%.

Only 4% of Pakistan’s total area is covered by forest with only 5% area protected. To control reforestation adoption of biogas is a best technology in Pakistan.




Increasing pharmaceutical exports

Boosting pharma exports
By Tahir Ali

(DAWN, Monday, 18 Oct, 2010)


PAKISTAN’S low exports of pharmaceutical products at about $100 million can be significantly increased provided the local pharma sector is given incentives and relieved of regulatory burdens, industry sources say.

Though pharmaceutical exports have become the seventh largest manufacturing-based export segment, highest infrastructure and operating cost, inconsistent government policies, high duties, lack of research and development facilities, high interest rates, energy shortage and the poor security situation have obstructed efforts to raise exports to their potential.

Khalid Mehmood, chief executive of a national pharmaceutical company says the pharma industry was made to pay one per cent of its profit before tax (PBT) for the central research fund (CRF).

“We have been paying CRF for years without getting a single short or long-term benefit. No such thing is being levied on any other industry. Conversely, they are given support for setting up laboratories and R&D centres. The CRF must be eliminated if the industry has to grow,” he said.

Export insurance policy is required for protecting exporters from payment risks. While governments of the competing countries have devised protection mechanisms for their exporters, Pakistan has not. This should be done immediately,” he added.

Exports of pharmaceuticals are dependent on the capability of the manufacturer to obtain certification from WHO and other regulatory agencies of the importing countries.

“A pharmaceutical facility to qualify for accreditation by these agencies, requires at least Rs3-5 billion of capital expenditures and Rs200-300 million of operating expenses annually. This necessitates huge capital and profitability for the company,” he said.

“To be able to do that, prices of medicines should be deregulated. Ever since the Indian and the Bangladeshi authorities have done that, manufacturing plants in India and Bangladesh have gone up to 90 and four respectively while none has been set up in Pakistan, ” he informed.

Pakistan’s pharmaceutical exports are just around $100 million as against India’s exports of $11 billion which are expected to surge to $40bn by 2012.

To the fear that deregulation will increase the prices of medicines, he said, essential drugs, recommended by the WHO, should be regulated and their prices controlled. “This is being done in India and Bangladesh where only 74 and 109 molecules are on the controlled list of drugs. For all other products, the price is deregulated. Standard pricing should be adopted in the country,” said another expert.

“Some importing countries require a certificate of prices from the exporting country to establish price for imports. It harms exporters who cannot charge the higher prices prevailing in the external markets as the prices of drugs are low here and are mentioned on the registration letter. Higher price certificates should be provided to exporters only for exports,” he suggested.

Sources said exports can be increased if the quality of the products and the country’s regulatory framework are in line with the global and regional practices. “Drug regulatory requirements must be harmonised with those in ASEAN region provided prices of locally manufactured drugs are increased to their level and are deregulated. But how does Pakistan formulate a regulatory policy which is in line with the international best practices and yet it does not penalise the industry? One way is to form a pharmaceutical regulatory authority,” he suggested.

Pharmaceutical exporters need one-window fast-track facility.

“About seven days and sometimes weeks, are required for getting NOC for a consignment. Exporters would greatly benefit if one-window operation for export clearances and to expedite drug registration and clearance process is introduced,” he added.

The pharma industry also complains they have to pay five per cent workers’ profit participation fund (WPPF), and two per cent workers’ welfare fund (WWF). “Though it was meant for benefiting workers, they have least benefited from it. Industries in other countries are not taxed with the WPPF or the WWF. These should be eliminated as the tax slabs for the industry are already the highest in the world- around 35 per cent. On an emergency basis, at least the export revenue should be exempted from the two levies,” he added.

The industry will also benefit if the export freight subsidy (EFS) is introduced for it. “The EFS has been introduced for other industries in the trade policy but pharma industry has been ignored. Export development surcharge at 0.25 per cent should also be withdrawn immediately. Export refinance facility is currently in the ratio of 2:1. Performance requirement should be 1:1 as a number of countries in the region have this facility,” he desired.

As per regulation of State Bank of Pakistan vide circular No15 of August 15,, 2003 and subsequent circular No.9 of August 28, 2008, every exporting pharma company can retain 15 per cent of its sales proceeds in foreign currency account which can subsequently be used for foreign remittances and reimbursement of expenses etc.

“It is impossible to cater to huge international expenses with this amount. This is practically impossible in the initial years when expenses are high as against returns. Hence retention from 30—40 and 25—30 per cent of sales proceeds should be allowed for an exporting company having sales up to $10 million and more than $10 million respectively. This extension will not only help local exporters compete and survive in international market but also boost their exports,” he added.

As per regulation of FBR vide Sec No 152 (2), reimbursement of expenses by an exporting company to its representative office abroad is subjected to withholding tax at the rate of 30 per cent on every payment and in the case of double taxation treaty between Pakistan and exporting country, at 15 per cent of payment.

“Being reimbursement of expenses, these payments should be exempted from withholding tax and an appropriate provision be inserted in relevant section of the income tax ordinance to this effect,” he argued.

Pharmaceutical industry is providing direct and indirect employment to nearly four million people. It fulfills over 90 per cent of the country’s drug requirements. It saves huge foreign exchange as only less than 10 per cent of the medicines need to be imported. And it is fast moving towards 100 per cent self-sufficiency.

%d bloggers like this: