Hostile activities in district Sheikhupura
Kot Abdul Malik; February, 2010: Hostile activities against the Ahmadiyya community are on the increase all over Pakistan and more so in the Punjab. A series of incidents occurred in Kot Abdul Malik which is not far from Rachna Town where an Ahmadi was murdered for his faith.
Mr. Qamar Ansar who lives in Scheme No. 3 reported the following:
“I own a CD’s and mobile phones store. Activities against the Ahmadiyya community have been increasing in the area for the last six months, but they have picked up pace recently. There’s a doctor’s clinic near my shop that I occasionally visit. He gave me some hateful pamphlets against our community, and asked me to read them. After some days he called me, but I excused myself. He then distributed such literature, and pasted stickers on shops where we buy groceries from. These stickers urge the boycott of Qadianis, and call it a sin to have business interaction with them. However those shopkeepers continue to sell us goods.
“A conference regarding the Seerut-un-Nabisa (Attributes of the Holy Prophetsa) was held near our house, to which Ahmadis were also invited. Slander was used against the Ahmadiyya community and hateful literature was distributed in public. They asked an Ahmadi (whose faith was not known to them), who sells ice cream on trolley, to join their group and distribute hateful literature far and wide, and thereby earn a reward from God. He took the literature but did not distribute it. He told me that they are planning a big conference in opposition to Ahmadiyyat, and are determined to drive Ahmadis out of this area.
“My brother Mazhar used to visit a shop. The work-boy there stopped greeting him. My brother’s friend Munawwar called him there, on the pretence of an emergency. He was met there by a group. They carried a few Ahmadiyya publications. They quoted extracts out of context from them and concluded that Ahmadis are non-Muslims. They asked my brother to become a Muslim. Mazhar told them that he will talk to his family and tell them later. Mazhar took leave, while they insisted on another meeting soon.
“After a few days we went to see another doctor for medical advice. The first doctor also came over there and asked this doctor to abstain from dealing with Qadianis. He also gave him some anti-Ahmadiyya literature.
“Somebody pasted a hateful sticker at the main gate of our house, which we removed later. My younger sister who teaches in a private school was also approached and given an anti-Ahmadiyya book through a female student.
“A woman came to the house of another Ahmadi, abused Ahmadiyyat and urged the family to recant and accept Islam.
“Such incidents have become more frequent,” he concluded.
A criminal case based on religious prejudice
Shahkot, District Shikhupura; June 22, 2010: Four Ahmadis, Mr. Afzal Ahmad the local community president, Umar, Afzal and Fayyaz were booked wrongfully by the police on a false charge of firing gun shots. Eventually the case was filed.
More malice after the Lahore attack
Mirpur Khas, Sindh: The Ahmadis of Mirpur Khas faced more animosity after the carnage of 28th May in Lahore. Those who were living in rented properties were told to vacate them by their landlords.
Mr. Siddique Ahmad Bhatti owns a grocery shop in the town. A youth came to his shop in his absence and asked the attendant for the business card. The visitor wrote a figure of 5,000 at the back of the card and came back later to demand that much amount from Mr. Bhatti, who refused to pay. At this he threatened him with grave consequences. Other shopkeepers intervened in favour of Mr. Bhatti; later a Pathan shopkeeper led the visitor away. The brother of that youth has links with the Sipah Sahaba, a banned organization for its terrorist activities.
Incident in Lathianwala
Lathianwala, district Faisalabad: Zafar Iqbal was drawing water from a community water pump on the night of June 28, 2010 when a group of non-Ahmadis came over, took him away and beat him up. They informed the police that he had come to abduct one of their women. This was a complete fabrication. The police took him away but he was later released. The next day, however, under pressure from opponents the police booked him along with five identified Ahmadis and 8-10 unidentified Ahmadis under PPC 376/511. The identified accused are Irshad, Arshad, Anees, Imtiaz and Imran. It is relevant to recall that this village community experienced severe persecution last year when the police booked 32 Ahmadis in a fabricated case under the blasphemy law and anti-Ahmadiyya law.
A conference in the memory of a fake martyr of Khatme Nabuwwat
Chak Sikandar; July 18, 2010: A conference in ‘Memory of the martyrs of Khatme Nabuwwat’ was held here on July 18. It is held annually on 16 July in memory of a youth, Ahmad Khan, who was killed on 16 July 1989 during the anti-Ahmadiyya riots. The fact is that he was killed in a dispute over the distribution of stolen items taken from an Ahmadi’s house. A section of the rioters killed Ahmad Khan and falsely implicated Ahmadis in his murder. This helped them in obtaining the release of some of their colleagues who had been arrested for the murder of Ahmadis.
Thereafter, a shrine was built upon his grave. People from different villages come here every year and participate in this conference and indulge in provocation against Ahmadis. This year the date of the conference was shifted to 18 July because July 16 fell on Friday. It was highly publicized and people were invited to participate in large numbers, through banners and ads.
Plight of an isolated Ahmadi household
Mubarakpura, District Sheikhupura: Mr. Naseer Ahmad’s is the only Ahmadi family in the village. Although he has faced faith-based opposition for some time, it seems it has now reached an almost unbearable level. He reported that his family is being treated like Shudras (Dalits) by the people of the village.
“Almost a dozen mullas stormed my village on 20th of May this year, and subjected me to great harassment”, he wrote. Thereafter his maltreatment persisted and the villagers insisted that he must recant and rejoin mainstream Islam. Some students who attend a madrassah in Batti Chowk, Lahore have taken the lead in this campaign to harry the family. On October 19, 2010 the madrassah students brought along some of their teachers from Lahore who attempted to kidnap Mr. Ahmad’s 15-years old son. They did not succeed but the incident has left a telling effect on the family.
A sinister attitude attributed to Islam
Chak 559/GB, District Faisalabad; December 10, 2010: Two Ahmadi elders of the local community were walking through the bazaar, when they said ‘Salaam’ to a shop-keeper. Rather than reciprocating the greeting, he showed annoyance and said, ‘How dare you non-Muslims wish me Salaam?’ When told to calm down, he got more angry. He brought out his gun and threatened to kill the Ahmadis (goli mar doonga). At this, a few persons nearby intervened and restored peace. The next day, that shopkeeper brought over two lawyers and two mullas to support him. One of the lawyers was Liaquat Khichhi, a member of the Nankana Bar. These individuals added to the stir and agitated the communal environment.
As the situation was worsening, the Ahmadis decided to report the developments to the police. At this the village elders intervened and restored calm. It is not temporary, one hopes.