Education sector and Ahmadis – in 2011

Ahmadiyya community is facing discrimination on the bases of religion in various spheres of life in Pakistan since the promulgation of anti-Ahmadiyya Ordinance XX of 1984. There is perhaps no sphere in which Ahmadis are not targeted and their rights are denied. This is blatantly so in the field of education. Ahmadi students, both male and female, face prejudice and harassment in educational institutions.

In the recent past, official Boards of Education in the Punjab introduced the system of ‘On-line’ registration of students for examination; this exposed Ahmadi students to harassment for their faith. Earlier, students had the freedom to state their own religion on their forms, but the new format restricts them to only two options, Muslim or Non-Muslim. As such this way, Ahmadi students are compelled to call themselves non-Muslim, which is against their belief.

It is the first time that a student’s religion is mentioned on his Roll Number slip. Writing Non-Muslim on an Ahmadi’s Roll Number slip causes him mental hurt. This is what the mulla wants, and the authorities oblige him by doing his wish.

Although Ahmadi students and teachers face frequent incidents of discrimination and harassment, it is not possible to mention them all here. A few sample cases are briefly mentioned below, the first is in some essential detail.

 

Plight of Ahmadi educationist couple

They could have been an asset to the education sector in Pakistan

The following story shows how Pakistani society has harmed itself in the early 21st century. Its Islamist clergy, administration, police, polity in general have all played their part in landing the society in a quagmire.

Mr Azhar Ahmad is a youthful Ahmadi in his early 30s. He has an MBA in ‘Marketing’. He resided in Qutb Pur, Tehsil Dunyapur, Lodhran, a district located in the southern Punjab. He is married to Ms. Sarwat Mubbashir who has master’s degree in Zoology. They were married in December 2008. They now have two sons, Muddassar Ahmad Chaudhary aged 18 months and his new-born sibling Masroor Ahmad Chaudhary. As the couple are motivated to spread education in society through commitment, hard work and honest living, they decided to set up an educational institution in their town that would serve the people.

They established New Millat College of Commerce and Sciences, Dunyapur in April 2009. It was started in a 7-room building. The inauguration ceremony was held the next month to which they invited the elite of the district. It was a great success.

The couple’s hard work and good management delivered excellent results the very first year. A majority of the students were, of course, non-Ahmadi. The two top scorers stood first and third in the entire district. All the students, male and female, passed; they all obtained ‘first division’ marks – an amazing feat. The college claimed to provide a decent building, qualified teachers, friendly environment, a modern lab, at moderate cost.

All the above was not to the liking of their competitors. They started a hostile propaganda campaign against the New Millat College. As they could find no other valid reason, they picked up the weapon of religion to harass the couple. In this they enlisted the willing support of Khatme Nabuwwat clerics.

As the College of Commerce and Sciences had proved a great success, the couple planned to hold classes for women for F.Sc, B. Com, B. Ed and M. Ed degrees. They took a loan and started construction. The new building comprised 19 rooms. Students joined the New Millat Girls College, and the classes began.

In response, the Aalami Majlis Tahaffuz Khatme Nabuwwat printed hostile posters and put them up all over the town. The posters called for a general boycott of Qadianis, and of the New Millat College in particular. They urged “the Muslims of Dunyapur to boycott these (Qadianis’) institutions as evidence of their love for the Sovereign of the Two Worlds (PBUH), save the children becoming Qadianis and thus deserve the intercession of the Prophet.”

This campaign was intense and effective. Consequently, none of the town’s notables sent a message of congratulations to the couple over the brilliant results shown by the college after the first year of operation, even though the beneficiaries were primarily their children. The reaction displayed jealousy and prejudice. The mullas were furious. They took to holding open-air meetings and processions. The so-called elite sought peace in accepting intimidation. Mr Ahmad reported the unjustified agitation to the police. They did not respond.

The lack of administration and police support to the targeted family encouraged the mullas to become more rabid. They put up hateful banners in the town and distributed hate literature. They even visited door to door to dissuade parents from sending their children to colleges run by ‘Qadianis’. Delegations of mullas met the teachers and told them to stop teaching at the ‘New Millat College’. They even contacted the students, and indoctrinated them in hate and extremism.

The mullas used invective and slander in their speeches. They openly declared Ahmadis to be Wajib ul Qatl (must be killed). “They have no right to build here educational institutions; they are not allowed even to build a mosque. They should be thrown out of Dunyapur. Their colleges should be shut down”, mullas insisted. The bureaucracy found it convenient to support the mulla. The District Education Officer, Lodhran refused to register the college, so the students of New Millat had to obtain their examination registration through another college.

The Khatme Nabuwwat mullas, supported by the competitors of the New Millat colleges, had spoiled the communal and social peace sufficiently to urge the administration to take notice – of course, on the lines suggested by the clerics.

A committee was formed and its meeting was held under the chairmanship of the Deputy District Officer Revenue. It was also attended by a DSP, the police rep, a number of mullas, Ms Qudsia Saleem, the principal of the ‘New Millat’.

A reading of the ‘minutes of meeting’ shows that the chair and the DSP initially said a few decent words in support of peace and harmony, but then followed the agenda of the obscurantist mullas. The minutes convey that three of the participants stated that Qadianis were Kafir (infidels) and Wajib ul Qatl (must be killed). Also Qari Asghar demanded that if ‘these people’ want to run a school they should indicate boldly on the school board that it belongs to Qadianis. Maulana Akram said that this was a Qadiani conspiracy whereby they wanted to preach Qadianism in the town; they are in minority, they should build a school where they are in majority. Ms Qudsia Saleem said that the schools’ opponents were raising non-issues and they were only interested in making the New Millat enterprise a failure. The DSP (police) then came up with, “I have been told by the District Police Officer that the issue can only be solved with the help of the people. So I suggest, a Committee should be formed, whose decision should be implemented.”

As planned, a so-called Peace Committee was formed whose members were rabid ulama 1. Mufti Asghar Ali, 2. Maulana Saeedi, 3. Maulana Hafiz ur Rahman, 4. Qari Akram and 5. Kanwar Khalil. Also included as ‘v/s’ (whatever this means) were two Ahmadis Ms Qudsia Saleem and Mr Azhar Chaudhry.

It was a strange committee whose recommendations were to be binding on the administration. It comprised none else but the opposing parties themselves; one group of five mullas and the other group of two targeted Ahmadis. How on earth could such a ‘committee’ come up with a fair and reasonable solution? The mediocrity and apathetic nature of the district level bureaucracy in Lodhran is noteworthy here. These ‘Minutes of the meeting’ were sent to the DCO, DPO, etc. As the ‘Committee’ proceeded to act as proposed, it is reasonable to assume that the high level district administration approved the ‘Minutes’.

The Peace Committee’s recommendations surprised no one. These five mullas wrote down their findings as that of the ‘Five-member Peace Committee’, as if assuming and endorsing that the two Ahmadis were not a part of the committee. The committee stated their unanimous decision that (extracts), “Qadianis/Mirzais should not be allowed to build any school or college in Dunyapur. …The present New Millat College, is an institution run by Qadianis, it should be closed down immediately so that there is not the slightest change in the beliefs and thinking of the Muslim students, and the peace of Dunyapur remains undisturbed. Thereafter, if the administration does not act to close down the school and the college, it will be held responsible for the (breakdown in) law and order. From the Five-member Aman Committee Dunyapur.”

It is obvious that the entire procedure of holding a meeting followed by this ‘Peace Committee’ and all its relevant formalities were pre-planned to obtain a warning from the mullas to the authorities to facilitate their action of closing down the New Millat institutions, as desired by the religious fanatics. Lodhran is a district in the south Punjab. This region has been mentioned in dispatches repeatedly in recent years, all over the world – not incorrectly and not without reason.

Thereafter the situation worsened rapidly for Mr Azhar Ahmad and his wife Ms Sarwat Mubbashir. The mullas visited them and told them to convert to ‘Islam’ or face the consequences.

The couple were left with no option but to give up their enterprise. They held a meeting with the colleges’ staff and decided to transfer the institution to one of the staff members. This was at great financial loss to the couple. Within days the couple shifted to another city where they are, for the time being, more at peace, but without their cherished goal of providing first-rate education to the youth of Pakistan.

The staff member who purchased the property at cut-rate price, later refused to pay them the outstanding amount.

Although, the couple left Dunyapur in March 2011, this did not help peace in that town, as peace was not the aim of mullas. Months later, the communal situation turned more grave than ever. Mullas visited Ahmadi businessmen and threatened them with harm to life and property. They continue to make provocative speeches using sound amplifiers and post anti-Ahmadiyya stickers urging the people to hate Ahmadis and implement a complete social boycott of them. Such fascist tactics are being used to marginalize a small community.

 

AHRC report on Ahmadi students’ rustication

Anti-Ahmadiyya agitation remained intense in Dharanwali, District Hafizabad for months. It affected the religious and social peace of the community. The Asian Human Rights Commission posted the following report on its website on October 7, 2011.

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 
AHRC-STM-139-2011
October 7, 2011

 

A Statement by the Asian Human Rights Commission

 

PAKISTAN: The principals of the schools obey the instructions of Mullahs to rusticate the Ahmadi students


In the far-flung areas of Pakistan, students from the Ahmadi community have to face such practices by local religious groups, influential in the schools, which force Ahmadi students to hide their identity or to migrate to urban centers where Ahmadis face fewer persecutions. The Islami Jamiat Talaba (IJT), under the guidance of extremist religious leaders, has been allegedly assigned the task to “clean” the educational institutions, including universities and professional colleges in particular, of Ahmadi students. The staff of the educational institutions is being forced to provide details of the students.

The AHRC has recently received information that on September 22, a public meeting was held in Dharanwali, a settlement near Hafizabad, Punjab, which was addressed by mischief monger Mullahs whipping up hatred against Ahmadis. Using heart-piercing slanderous filthy language against the followers of Ahmadis and its leadership, they announce that they will never allow the burial of any Ahmadiyy Muslim in their cemetery and they will never let any Ahmadi child study in their schools.
Quickly after the inflaming provocation, ten Ahmadi students and a teacher were expelled from the local schools of Faisalabad district (sic), Punjab.

The following students were rusticated from two different schools of being Ahmedis;

  1. Shajar Ahmad – son of Amjad Zaid Ahmad, student Class 9,
  2. Faraaz Ahmad – son of ijaz Ahmad, student Class 12,
  3. Shabih Nasr – daughter of Nasr Ahmad, student Class 10,
  4. Tanseelah Khalil – daughter of Khalil Ahmad, studying for B.A Degree,
  5. Tanzeela Khalil – daughter of Khalil Ahmad, student Class 12,
  6. Nabeela Kahilil – daughter of Khalil Ahmad, student, Class 12,
  7. Iqbal Ahmad – son of Munir Ahmad, student, Class 6,
  8. Sadia Munir – daughter of Munir Ahmad, student Class 10
  9. Maham Jameel – daughter of Jameel Ahmad, student Grade 1,
  10. Manahil Jameel – daughter of Jameel Ahmad, student prep class.

They were all expelled from Chenab Public school (Principal Muhammad Yasser Arafat), and Muslim Public school, Dharanwali (Principal Yasser Abbas).

Moreover, an Ahmadiyya teacher Rafiya tul Bari, daughter of Amjad Zaid Ahmad, teaching in Chenab Public school, Dharanwali, was also expelled for being an Ahmadiyya Muslim.

This alarming situation for the fundamental right to education of Ahmadiyy Muslims in Pakistan continues to accelerate and the international community must take resolute action to pursue the Government of Pakistan to honour its commitments to the Universal Declaration on Human Rights and the Harare Declaration to which Pakistan is a signatory.

It is observed that in the recent days a strong wave against the different sects has swept through Punjab province which has provided shelters to the banned Islamic militant groups who are openly organising their public meetings and collecting funds on the streets. The banned religious groups gathered so much power through the ministers of provincial governments that they are now out of control. The rule of law which protects the religious freedom is under the total control of the Mullahs, the religious bigot, in the Punjab government.

The AHRC urges the government of Pakistan to repeal all the laws and ordinances denying Ahmadis their civic and fundamental rights and propping up the Mullahs and extremist groups to continue the murders of Ahmadis and the destruction of their means to livelihood.

The daily Mashriq reported the same story in its issue of October 10, 2011. It reported also that a teacher singled out an Ahmadi student in refusal to coach her in ‘tuition’ on payment. This resulted in her failure to pass the exam. The same daily remarked in an op-ed on October 11, 2011 the following:

“Officials of the Education Department should ponder that they have some responsibilities over and above those concerning the expulsion of Ahmadi students; they should not only be mindful of physical security of the students and teachers, they should ensure that the syllabi do not include texts that negate tolerance, forbearance and fraternal sentiments. Only that way we can send a signal to the Taliban and their off-springs that Pakistan is serious about education of its youth and will not bow to any pressure to submit to the will of obscurantists.”                                                                                      (translation)

Ms. Ayesha Rashid, an Ahmadi has circulated a comment on internet, with the title: Shadows of Endless Nights (Annex V). It sums up well the situation faced by Ahmadi students and teachers in Pakistan.

 

Miss Hina Akram’s ordeal continues

Faisalabad:     Miss Hina Akram of National Textile University, Faisalabad was maltreated by her teachers last year to the extent that she had to stop going to classes. Recalling the incident very briefly, the young lady was in very good books of her teacher, Mr Rao Rashid, till he came to know that she was an Ahmadi. He urged her to convert, offered her board and lodging with a ‘Muslim’ girl, and advised her to mind her life in the Hereafter. Subsequent to her refusal, he warned her of dire consequences and proceeded to make her stay in the university most difficult. She approached the Vice Chancellor for redress but he did nothing except convey his difficulties. Three months later, we received a follow-up report; it is given below.

As Hina could no longer continue her studies in the Faisalabad University she attempted transfer to other locations. She went first to the UMT Lahore. There the teachers told her that they already knew about her problem in the NTU Faisalabad. “Go back to Faisalabad, recant and you will have no problem there,” they told her.

Thereafter, she approached Hajveri University. They agreed to admit her and told her to revisit on December 1, 2010. However, on December 1, they came up with plain refusal. Then she tried Multan, but she came to know that all those people were linked to one another and provided mutual support and information. There is a fraternity of seniors and juniors who co-operate on this basis. Hina apparently has come to a dead end in her higher education.

 

Expulsions from schools for being Ahmadi

Despite having suffered severely at the hand of extremist elements, the Pakistani state and society continue to lean more than ever before on these people, and do their bidding. The new trend is to expel Ahmadi students from the state and private schools.

In August 2011, following seven Ahmadi girls and boys were expelled from various schools in Pachnand, District Chakwal:

 

No.

Name

Class

School

1

Sharif Ahmad

9th

Government High School

2

Rafiq Adhmad

9th

Government High School

3

Ehsan Ahmad

6th

Alyusuf Memorial School

4

Adnan Ahmad

6th

Alyusuf Memorial School

5

Ejaz Ahmad

10th

Government High School

6

Nisar Ahmed

8th

Alyusuf Memorial School

7

Naila Rafi

10th

Govt: Girls School

A teen-age student exposed to the tyranny of the blasphemy law

Khushab:         Rana Sajeel Ahmad, a 16-year old Ahmadi student of Pubic High School Khushab was beaten up severely by a gang of students on November 23, 2011. This led to a dispute that resulted in the dreaded charge of blasphemy against him.

Subsequent to the beating, the attackers accused Ahmad of preaching his creed and defiling the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be on him). The school administration found it convenient to accept the fabrication. The next day, Rana Hakim Jamil, father of the victim, met the school principal, but he expelled Ahmad from the school accusing him of blasphemy.

Four days after the attack, two applications were delivered to the police station. The first one was from Waqas Ahmad, an activist of the Majlis Khatme Nabuwwat who had obtained signatures of 12 students over a fabricated statement of the victim, “Your prophet is false; my prophet is true.” The applicant demanded that a criminal case be registered against Rana Sajeel Ahmad under PPC 295-C, the blasphemy law. It is relevant to mention here that according to most of these mullas it is perfectly acceptable, even desirable, to support the cause of religion through falsehood.

The second application was moved by Qari Saeed, the divisional chief of Majlis Khatme Nabuwwat. He accused therein that Rana Hakim Jamil had declared the religion of his son as Islam on the Entrance Form of the school. He demands that the father be prosecuted under PPC 298-C, the anti-Ahmadiyya law.

In fact, the Form was not signed by the father, it bears the signature of Rana Danial who is a brother of Rana Sajeel Ahmad. At the time of admission, Danial was told to sign on the dotted line; “the rest of the columns would be filled by the school administration”, he was assured. This is not unusual in Pakistan for procedures which are considered a mere formality.

The next day the DPO was requested to intervene. He heard the plea of the accused but said, “The case will be registered under PPC 295-C and 298-C immediately on availability of the evidence.” He told Ahmad that “these crazy people” would kill him.

After making written complaints to the police the mullas turned to their ‘standard operating procedure’. They held rallies in which they declared that if the police did not register the blasphemy case, they would take out processions and rallies. They declared that the two accused were Wajib-ul-Qatl (must be put to death). They issued a resolution (translation): “If the police do not register a blasphemy case against Rana Sajeel and Rana Hakim Jamil, they will be responsible for all that would happen to both. We are prepared to go to any length to protect the honour of the Prophet.” The mullas sent their emissaries, armed with this resolution, to other towns in the district.

As a result of these activities, and the police failure to handle the mullas firmly, the law and order situation in the town became delicate. The two accused felt that their lives were under threat, so they went into hiding. The police decided to placate the miscreants further.

The DPO sent for both the parties. Ahmadiyya delegation met the DPO on December 12, 2011, but did not present the accused for fear of their safety. Their opponents arrived in a huge crowd and presented their false witnesses well-briefed. The DPO was more concerned with maintaining calm than with dispensation of justice. He ordered that Mr. Asfand Yar be booked under 16 MPO, and that Sajeel be presented. The police arrested Asfand Yar who was not even accused by the mullas, to compel the family to deliver the two accused, who decided to avoid exposure to the lynch mob.

A few days later, the police booked Rana Sajeel Ahmad under PPC 295-C the blasphemy clause and his father Rana Hakim Jamil under PPC 298-C the anti-Ahmadiyya clause. Asfand Yar remains detained by the police who say that he will be released if Sajeel is presented. That is the Pakistani way: arrest an innocent member of the family to force them to deliver the accused, even if the charges are entirely false. The Express Tribune of December 15, 2011 reported the event at length under the headlines: Blasphemy charges: Out of fear, Ahmadi family on the run. Blasphemy allegations continue to haunt minorities in Pakistan.

There is reason to believe that the DPO knows that the blasphemy accusation against Sajeel is false, as no Ahmadi would ever say that Prophet Muhammad (p.b.u.h.) was a false prophet, but to avoid unrest and protect his career, he, like most others, opted to pass the case to the courts to decide. The much-trumpeted procedure, under rule section 156-A requiring a Superintendent of Police to investigate the accusation prior to charging an accused failed once again. It would fail almost every time, the unworthy drafters of this Rule designed it that way.

 

An Ahmadi student’s hard time in Bahawalpur University

Bahawalpur; November 24, 2011:      Mr. Abdul Moeed is a student of computer engineering in Bahawalpur University. He was beaten up recently in the university. Essential details follow.

Anjuman Talabah Islam (ATI), an Islamist students’ organization recently appointed a Nazim (organizer) in his class. He contacted Moeed and asked him time to sit down and talk with him. Moeed asked him the agenda, and the Nazim replied that it was his proselytizing in the hostel. The meeting did not materialize.

A few days later, on November 14, two students met Moeed and were harsh with him. It resulted in a scuffle in which both parties were roughed up. Mr. Moeed’s right shoulder got dislocated. He was taken to a hospital, x-rayed and discharged after first-aid.

On release from the hospital Moeed went to nearby Multan to recover at his aunt’s home. He missed his exam scheduled for November 17.

His recovery is satisfactory, but his return to the University is problematic.

 

Harassment of an Ahmadi student

Lahore; November 22, 2011:              Miss Rabia is a student in the Comsat College in Lahore. She saw a hurtful anti-Ahmadiyya poster in the premises, and tore it up. The anti-Ahmadi opponents got flared up and stirred up trouble. The college administration took her in custody. The crowd demanded that she should be handed over to them; the administration resisted that demand.

Later at night Miss Rabia and two other Ahmadi girls were taken away from the hostel by their relatives to save them from the unrest. The next day, the community advised all Ahmadi girls of the Comsat College to miss the college.

The opponents insisted that a criminal case should be registered against Miss Rabia.

 

Ordeal of another public school owner

Bahawalpur; January 24, 2011:         Mullas became active in Chak No. 9/BC fomenting agitation against Ahmadis. They undertook a campaign against a private school run by an Ahmadi, Mr. Muzaffar Ahmad.

They issued a poster calling for a rally against the ‘Qadiani’ Muzaffar Public School, Chak No. 9/BC Baghdad, Bahawalpur.

This rally commenced successfully as scheduled. Several hundred attended the rally. The participants urged the authorities to take immediate action to close down the school and punish those responsible for alleged blasphemy. They gave an 8-day dead-line to the authorities and threatened them with consequences if their demands were not met. This rally was led by the local Amir of Khatme Nabuwwat Mulla Ishaq Saqi, Mulla Riaz Chughtai, Rao Javed Iqbal, Mufti Iftikhar etc. Students from various schools and colleges also participated in the rally. Protesters were holding anti-Ahmadiyya banners and placards in admiration of Mumtaz Qadri, Governor Taseer’s murderer. This story was published by the vernacular press, specially by the daily Khabrain, Multan; January 25, 2011.

 

Ordeal of an Ahmadi college principal

Lahore; April 2011:     Mr. Nafeer A. Malik is serving as principal at the Quadi-e-Azam Law College, Lahore. Students wrote a letter to the director of the college demanding the removal of Mr. Malik for reciting the Kalima as an Ahmadi. Extracts from their letter are translated below:

“… During the lecture the principal recited the Kalima and said that had he been the judge and his own brother had committed the murder, he would have given him capital punishment. We were surprised to hear the principal recite the Kalima as he is a (Qadiani/Mirzai) non-Muslim.

“This injured our religious feelings that he recited the Kalima as a Qadiani and tried to deceive us. …

“We are jointly writing this letter under oath. Take this matter seriously and relieve him from his duties. If you do not dismiss him within a few days, we would be compelled to protest and take legal action in cooperation with all religious and political parties and bar councils. We would have our complaint registered against the principal, under PPC 298-C (copy attached) and have him punished by the court. This will affect the reputation of your colleges. …”

 

An Ahmadi educator faces anger from extremist colleagues

Chak 736/GB, District Toba Tek Singh:         We translate below a self-explanatory application sent by Mr. Zafar Iqbal, Ahmadi, a district teacher educator (DTE) to his departmental superiors.

To: Programme Director, DSP Lahore

Subject: Application regarding amendment to question papers and prevention of incitement to violence

Sir,

            I state respectfully that I am a DTE at Government High School of 736/GB, in your department. For April Assessment, held in May, DTSC question papers were received by E-mail, for the English Medium (students). I took out the prints, and while I entered Urdu translation on the sheets for science and mathematics question papers, I made no alteration to the question papers on Islamiat, Social Science and Urdu. These question papers had no epithets like Hazrat, Sallalaho Alahe wa Sallam and Raziallah Ta‘la Anho for the Holy Prophet (PBUH) and his companions r.a. I give details on the back of this sheet.

            Some PSTS teachers started exploiting this issue, and they are creating tension in CTSC through religious hate propaganda. They have prepared a joint application, in which they have accused me of blasphemy against the Holy Prophet (PBUH), his companions (r.a.) and his family (r.a.). They are obtaining teachers’ signatures on that (I enclose a photocopy). These charges are baseless, as I had the original question papers photocopied without making any addition or alteration.

            I am greatly upset. Any provoked man can attack me and do harm to my person or property. I have received threats that I shall be denied entry to the schools during visits.

            The leaders of this unrest and agitation are Mr. Muhammad Sajid PST of GHS 732/GB, Mr. Muhammad Shafi PST of GHS 732/GB, Mr. Muhammad Salis PST of GHS 738/GB, Mr. Muhammad Charagh PST of GHS 731/GB, Mr. Muhammad Iqbal PST of GHS 731/GB, Mr. Naseer Ahmad PST of GHS 731/GB.

            It is very relevant that ‘Assessments’ have been completed in other Circles in identical circumstances of no change to the original question papers. I hope you will attend to this issue on Urgent basis. I shall be grateful.

 

Yours faithfully,

Signed

Zafar Iqbal DTE, Govt High School 736 GB Tehsil Kumalia, District Toba Tek Singh.

Copy for info and action. DCO, EDO (Edu), DEO (Elementary) DMO, District Training and Support Kamaliya.

This case shows the freedom, lack of accountability and absence of concern enjoyed by extremists in their public and professional conduct in the Punjab.

 

Hostility in schools

Sukheki, district Hafizabad; December 2011:            Mr. Qamar Ullah Shaheen is the president of local Ahmadiyya community. He has two daughters who study in the local Girls Higher Secondary School. Miss Naima Ambar is a student of the senior class. One day her teacher spoke against Ahmadis in the classroom. She urged the students to boycott Shezan products as Ahmadis are their owners and alleged that they used their income against Muslims. Mr. Shaheen’s younger daughter Miss Ramia Ambar also faces hostility at the school. Her fellow students harass her and use bad words against the founder of the Ahmadiyya community. One of them suggested her to recant and take an oath of allegiance on her hand.

 

An Ahmadi student denied admission

Gujranwala; December 2011: Mr. Shahzem Sohail Ahmad applied for admission in Punjab Medical colleges. He passed the entry test and qualified for admission from Gujranwala Medical College on merit on December 18, 2011. He received call from University of Health Sciences on December 25, 2011. He went there with educational certificates. The staff there declared the issued marks-sheet bogus, although it had been issued by them, and cancelled his admission. The university administration tampered grossly with his obtained marks and made them 635 instead of 935. The vice-chancellor and the controller of examination threatened Mr. Ahmad of grave consequences and told him to admit that his marks-sheet was fake and bogus. He refused to yield to their pressure. His admission was cancelled despite qualifying for it on merit.

Mr. Ahmad, in consultation with his father, has decided to approach the Lahore High Court to obtain justice.

 

Hate campaign in educational institutions

Islamabad:      G-10 and G-11 are the sectors of Islamabad where mostly flats and students’ hostels are located. Members of Tablighi Jamaat instigate the youth against Ahmadis after prayers in the mosques there. After the incident of the murder of Governor Taseer, some youth of Sector E-9 in Islamabad were reported to have said that they would like to kill Ahmadis. This is the sector where officials of security agencies reside.

A debate took place in Bahria University on the subject of death sentence to Mumtaz Qadri, the murderer of Governor Taseer. Students, male and female, of post-graduate level took part in it. It is a pity that very few students spoke in favour of the judicial decree, while majority of them spoke in defence of Mumtaz Qadri. Many of them expressed their conviction that they would have themselves killed such a ‘blasphemer’.

 

Kotli, AJK; October 2011:                  Prof. Mahmood Ahmad is the district president of the Ahmadiyya community in Kotli, AJK. He teaches in the post-graduate college in Kotli. He noticed anti-Ahmadiyya inscription on the classroom board, rostrum and found a few pieces of papers with inscription like “Qadiani Infidels (Kafir), etc. He ignored these hate messages, held the class and left the classroom. Mr. Tasawwar Ahmad, his son attends the same class. His class-mates harassed him and called him an infidel. Later they beat him in the classroom on October 3, 2011. He received many injuries.

 

Talim-ul-Islam College, Rabwah

Rabwah: It would be recalled that this college, built, established and developed very successfully in Rabwah by the Ahmadiyya community, was nationalized decades ago by the government of Mr. Zulfiquar Ali Bhutto. With the passage of time and official neglect the college building has become dilapidated and has been declared ‘dangerous’. Now the authorities have sanctioned some money for its renovation. Referring to this, Mr. Aamir Mahmud of Rabwah wrote a letter to the editor of the monthly Nia Zamana. The closing para of this letter published in the issue of June 2011 is translated below:

            “In short, the government, under the pressure of mullas, has not handed back the educational institutions to the Jamaat Ahmadiyya, while Parsis and Christians have received back theirs. While the government knows that its occupation of this college and its land is improper and this property belongs to Sadr Anjuman Ahmadiyya, why is it spending big money on its renovation? Would it not be better that the government of Punjab spends this money elsewhere to build a new college and hand over this college back to its rightful owners?”

 

An Ahmadi educator under threat

Township, Lahore; July, 2011:                      Syed Farrukh Ahmad is an Ahmadi educator in Township, Lahore. He has been harassed by mullas for the last two years. The bigots of the Pasban Khatme Nabuwwat wing are on his trail. “Your case has reached a high level. A plan is ready to take care of you. Pamphlets will be distributed to every student and in every home against you and your school after the summer vacations”, a mulla told him. Mullas are known to have discussed his case in a meeting.

Mr. Ahmad was very upset in the face of all this.

 

Harassment of a school teacher

Chak no. 55 GB, Jaranwala; September, 2011:                     Ms. Naheed Akhtar is serving as a PTC school teacher in Government High School in her village. There are anti-Ahmadiyya elements in this village among Ahle-Sunnat, Ahle-Hadith, Jamaat Islami and Tablighi Jamaat. Members of the Tablighi Jamaat are especially active against her. Anti-Ahmadiyya posters and stickers are pasted on walls in the village. A disfigured photo of the founder of the Ahmadiyya community is also pasted at a prominent location. The miscreant has displayed his phone number on it.

In response to baseless complaints against Ms. Akhtar, an investigation team comprising the police staff from Faisalabad and Jaranwala came over to the school and made enquiries about Ms. Akhtar. They asked students and other staff members whether she teaches them about the advent of any new prophet. They claimed to have been sent by the DCO Faisalabad. They did not disclose the name of the complainant(s).

Ms. Akhtar feels this is a threat to her job and career.     

 

Sorry state of a nationalized Ahmadiyya girls school

Sialkot:            The daily Khabrain, Lahore of January 21, 2011 published a report. Its translation is given below:

“Dilapidated state of the Government Ahmadiyya Girls School. No furniture either. Hundreds of girl-students are made to sit on the ground in class rooms. Walls develop cracks.

 

“Sialkot (Bureau Report):        Hundreds of girl students have no option but to sit on the floor of class rooms in the dilapidated building of their school that was built a century ago. Govt Ahmadiyya Girls School, Buddhi Bazaar was built a hundred years ago during the Raj in 1910. No repairs or maintenance to it has been undertaken subsequently. As such, the school is in extremely precarious state. Its roofs leak during rains. Walls have developed cracks. Doors and windows are crumbling. And there is no furniture in the school for its 750 students.

            According to Ms Faiza Mir, the school headmistress, the students of this crumbling school are very intelligent; the school results are 100 percent every year. Mr. Kashif Niaz Butt, a former councilor and a leader of PML (N) stated that a year ago Khawja Muhammad Asif MNA and Mr. Imran Ashraf MPA obtained 5.6 million rupees as grant for the school, but the Education Department failed to utilize the amount. No wonder, hundreds of children are deprived of basic class room furniture. Residents have demanded attention of the authorities.” 

            The school mentioned in the above news originally belonged to Ahmadis, but was nationalized subsequently. The news describes the sad state in the education sector of Ahmadi students, teachers and former institutions. These also show the neglect and inaction of the authorities towards the oft-repeated comment in official circles that religious extremism is the main threat to Pakistani state and society.

 

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