Culture of Peace. By Syeda Farkhanda Ather

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The entire world and particularly our country Pakistan is passing through a serious crisis of terrorism. Terrorism has affected the Third World countries or the developing nations. Poverty, economic crisis and political instability are the main causes of terrorism and extremism in Pakistan.
The extremists target the religious gatherings in the big cities like Karachi, Lahore, Quetta and Dera Ghazi Khan etc. The terrorists target the innocent people at any place. No place or city is safe from the nefarious
designs and activities of these extremists who are the enemies of humanity.
Nine mourning processions have been so far targeted in various cities since 2009 in which 177 innocent people lost their lives and 689 men, women and children have been injured by these merciless terrorists. They have targeted four religious processions in Lahore, three in Karachi and one each in Quetta and Dera Ghazi Khan.52 lost their lives in Karachi, 50 in Quetta, 42 in Lahore and 33 in Dera Ghazi Khan. There were three suicide attacks on September 1, 2010 on the martyrdom day of Hazrat Ali (A.S) in which 27 lost
their lives and 237 were injured while on January 25, 2011 on the chehlam of Hazrat Imam Hussain (A.S) there were two suicide attacks in Lahore and Karachi in which 16 innocent people lost their lives and more than 81 were injured.
No place is safe from them as they have targeted mosques, Imam Bargahs, Churches, Bait-al-Zikr, police training centres, offices and vehicles of the security agencies. Pakistan is going through many problems. Whenever Pakistani forces take action against the terrorists in the tribal areas they target the innocent people and the security agencies. There are chances of sectarian violence in Pakistan. The terrorists recruit the youngsters in their groups. American drone attack and Pakistani security agencies are taking actions against these terrorists. On the other hands the terrorists are engaged to terror the population of the big cities. The terrorists and extremists are playing fouls with poverty, unemployment and illiteracy of
the Pakistani people. They are violent and intolerant. They exploit the religious emotions of the youth for the fulfillment of their nefarious designs. They are a challenge for every government of Pakistan. The
government has to play her role for the creation and promotion of culture of peace by all means. It must take strict security measures and to control such elements who are promoting intolerance and terrorism in our country. There must be coordination of the government and common people in this regard. Role of the peace promoting organizations can be very effective. I would like to appreciate professor Anjum James Paul who has devoted his life for the promotion of the culture of peace. He is a peace activist and his
all activities bring the people of different thoughts, faiths and sects closer to each other. We need such people who respect human dignity and human respect without any distinction.
Let us forget all sorts of biases against our fellow beings. God is love so to love God we shall have to love His creation which is in the shape of human beings.
So let us have commitment to respect human life, respect human dignity, respect human rights, respect difference of opinion, respect followers of all faiths and races.

(The writer is a peace activist)

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