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Originally Posted by Kamran5011
Bundle of Thanks for the shared info....Kindly Post Details/info Regarding




a- check this link for BAGLIHAR PLANT ON CHENAB

The Baglihar Dam and the Indus Water Treaty

The failure of the recent Pakistan-India talks on the Baglihar Dam, being constructed by India on the Chenab river, have brought home to the Pakistanis not only the shortcomings of the 1960 Indus Waters Treaty but also the consequences to the whole agricultural sector of the country once the Dam becomes operational.

The public surfacing of the Baglihar Dam issue has also cleared some popular misunderstandings regarding the Indus Waters Treaty, especially the assumption prevailing in Pakistan that the IBRD or World Bank was a guarantor of this Treaty. In fact, this is not the case at all. The fact of the matter is that the Indus Water Treaty is primarily a bilateral treaty with the World Bank only being a signatory ‘for the purposes specified in Articles V and X and Annexures F, G and H.’1 Article V basically relates to the financial provisions of the Treaty while Article X, which relates to Emergency Provision – relating to the completion of the water systems provided for in the Treaty under Article IV (1) – is effectively now redundant. It related to Pakistan making a representation to the Bank before March 31, 1965 that the works stipulated in Article IV (1) would not be able to be completed before March 31, 1971 ‘because of the outbreak of large-scale international hostilities arising out of causes beyond the control of Pakistan,’ which would prevent it from obtaining the necessary materials and equipment from abroad. Interestingly enough, it is just as well that no war commenced between Pakistan and India before March 1965, because this Article would then not have been applicable since it includes the phrase, ‘international hostilities arising out of causes beyond the control of Pakistan.

While the World Bank, under the Treaty, does have an obligation to appoint a neutral expert, under Annexure F, there is no legal mechanism whereby the findings of this expert can be implemented forcefully by the World Bank against the wishes of one of the Parties. Of course, the terms of the Treaty are binding on the signatories and, therefore, the decision of the neutral expert also falls in this category; but then India has violated the terms of the Treaty itself – so, who will ensure that it accepts the findings of the neutral expert?

Annexure G relates to the setting up of an Arbitration Court, with lists of members and Chairmen already identified within the Annexure. Annexure H basically focuses on transitional arrangements and has now lapsed. It seems that once the neutral expert decides that the issue in question is not merely a technical issue but a dispute, then the arbitration procedure can be activated.

Obviously India had done its homework on the Indus Water Treaty far better than us. By going for a neutral expert through the World Bank when the Baglihar Dam project is almost complete, we are not going to get much. Even if the expert rules in our favour, who will make India undo the Dam physically? Certainly not the World Bank, which has quite correctly stated that it is not a guarantor of the Indus Water Treaty of 1960.2 So it is strange to find the sovereign state of Pakistan having surrendered the rights to the use of its three Eastern rivers (Beas, Sutlej, Ravi) in return for the rights over the waters of the three Western rivers (Indus, Jhelum, Chenab), with no international guarantees to stop India from eventually seeking to deny Pakistan access to all its river waters.

Under these circumstances, if Pakistan had opted for the neutral expert much earlier, as soon as the construction had started on the Baglihar Dam and before it was almost complete, it could have sought international political leverage to pressurise India into abiding by the Treaty provisions. After all, there is nothing that prevents states from pursuing two parallel tracks on any one issue, so dialogue on the overall issue would not have been foreclosed simply because a neutral expert was looking into the technical aspects of the Dam issue.

In fact, Pakistan had initially sought to use the neutral expert provision of the Treaty as early as 2003, but the Indians sought to delay this by asking Pakistan to hold technical level talks. When that failed the Indians sought to continue to delay Pakistan seeking the intervention of the neutral expert by suggesting bilateral meetings between the two countries’ water and power secretaries. And throughout this period, the work on Baglihar continued. Clearly the Indian intent was to keep Pakistan engaged in a meaningless dialogue on the issue while the project neared completion so that Pakistan would eventually be presented with a fait accompli.

It seems highly unlikely that anyone would be able to compel India to undo the transgression of the Treaty by its construction of the Baglihar Dam. At best, we may arrive at a moral victory and be forced to conclude a new accommodation based on the new realities of the Dam. So much for the Indus Water Treaty. In some ways the present situation relating to the Baglihar Dam reminds one of the Atlantique case3 when we should have realised the limitations of ICJ jurisdiction, and therefore should have used the political fora of the UN to morally and politically condemn India for its act of wanton aggression.

Although the issue came to a head in 2003 with Pakistan demanding that India stop the illegal construction of the Dam, Pakistan has been raising the Baglihar issue with India since May 1992 when India first supplied it with information regarding the Dam. Pakistan raised objections in August 1992 and since then the issue has been raised at the various meetings of the Indus Waters Commission (IWC) and through exchange of letters (see a chronology of events on the issue in the Annexure). But Indian intransigence on this issue has resulted in the present near-conflictual situation. India has also tried to enmesh the issue with the issue of Kashmiris getting access to sufficient electricity, whereas the two are not linked at all.

The Indus Water Treaty does allow India the right to hydroelectric power generation from the Western rivers but only by run-off river installations without affecting the volume and direction of water. What is clearly not allowed is building storage capacities on the Western rivers, which directly impede the flow of the waters (Article III (4). In order to safeguard against interference with the flows of these rivers by the upper riparian (India) plant designs have to conform to criteria laid down in Annexure D of the Treaty.

At the last meeting between Pakistan and India to resolve the issue, Pakistan sought satisfaction on five major points of concern to it:

That the project design should be based on low-level weir since the run of the river projects do not require a ‘high head’ of 475 feet.

That the calculations of ‘pondage’ and ‘firm power’ in the design was inconsistent with the Indus Water Treaty, while the level of ‘intake’ in the project design was low and contravened the Treaty.

According to the Treaty requirements, the design should be based on ‘un-gated’ spillways. The Indian design was contrary to the Treaty requirements. India had to also ensure that gates were at the highest level as provided for in the Treaty.

The Treaty criteria need to be fulfilled for the provision of calculations and justification of ‘free board’.

Arrangements needed to be made to monitor and inspect the site at the time of plugging of the low-level tunnel.

The Indians maintained their posture that the Treaty did not restrict the construction of a high dam and that the ‘pondage’, ‘firm power’ and the level of intake and ‘free board’ being developed by India were premised on sound techno-economic considerations. In fact India evaded the issue of whether all these points of concern raised by Pakistan were contrary to the Treaty, and refused to respond to Pakistani objections on the basic design. Pakistan’s basic argument remains that the Treaty permitted construction only of a ‘run of the river plant’ on the Chenab and not a high dam of 475 feet.

In the light of the total lack of a satisfactory response from India on this crucial Baglihar Dam issue, Pakistan finally approached the World Bank to appoint a neutral expert, although many in Pakistan feel this is too late to do much good since India has announced that it will continue to complete the project.

Additionally, India has also shown intransigence on other related water issues coming under the purview of the Indus Waters Treaty. For instance, the Indians are pursuing the Kishanganga hydroelectric power project, as well as maintaining the stalemate on the Wullar Barrage. The former project is nearing completion with a 22-km tunnel to divert the waters of the Neelum river to Wullar Lake. The Neelum is an integral part of the river Jhelum – again one of the three Western rivers – and, therefore, the Kishanganga project also contravenes the Indus Waters Treaty because it impacts the flow of the waters of the Western rivers to Pakistan. Not only will the flow of the water be affected but also Pakistan’s prior rights for its proposed 969 mw Neelum-Jhelum hydropower project in Azad Kashmir.

Indian lack of concern over observing international Treaty commitments has surfaced once again with an announcement of three more dam projects in Occupied Kashmir.4 The new projects are again on the Western rivers – the Uri-II project is on the Jhelum river in Baramulla district, and Pakal Dul and Burser, both on the Marusundar, a tributary of the Chenab river in Doda district. The Indian Ministry of Power has already approved these projects and it seems apparent that India may well be headed towards reneging on the Indus Water Treaty totally if Pakistan asserts its rights under the Treaty.

All in all, the Indus Waters issues not only highlight the very real security dimension of the Kashmir issue for Pakistan but also Indian efforts to pit the Kashmiris against Pakistan on the false claims that Pakistan wishes to deny the former access to hydroelectricity from the waters that flow through Kashmir. Unless Pakistan exposes Indian designs and the absurdity of its claims to the Kashmiris, Pakistan will find itself not only moving towards desertification of the rich plains of the Punjab but also may find itself facing an increasingly hostile Kashmiri population across the LOC.


Baglihar Dam: Chronology of Events
1992 – January 2005

20 May 1992

*Information supplied by India

12 August 1992

*Pakistan raised objections

7 May 1993 –

*28 September 1999

*Exchange of arguments on the design of the plant and request for the Indus Waters Commission’s (IWC) meeting on the issue

6 – 11 January 1996

*Site inspection – no work at site

29 – 30 March 2000

*84th Meeting of Commission – Pakistan asked for additional data; discussion on design

29 May – 1 June 2000

*85th Meeting of Commission – India promised data

29 May – 1 June 2001

*86th Meeting of Commission – Agreed for discussion under Article IX(1)

10 January 2001

*Pakistan’s letter – asked about status of work progress

15 October 2001

*Pakistan’s letters – stop work and have meeting to resolve the issue

15 January 2002

*Pakistan’s letter – stop construction pending resolution 6 March, 2002
India’s reply – no obligation to stop work under the treaty

4 April 2002

*Pakistan’s letter – ‘Question’ sent to India under Article IX(1)

28 May – 1 June 2002

*87th Meeting of the Commission – India sought Pakistan’s reaction on particulars of change on 24 May, 2002

Particulars of change conveyed by India on 13 July, 2002

Pakistan’s letter – Objections were maintained

31 July 2002

*Pakistan’s letter – for meeting to resolve the issue under Article IX(1)

29 August 2002

*India’s reply – waiting for comments internally (from within its own set up)

6 September 2002

*Pakistan’s letter – urged for immediate meeting

16 September 2002

*India’s letter – not received comments internally; refused stoppage of work

17 September 2002

*Pakistan urged for meeting – stated it would proceed to the next step in the Treaty, if no positive response from India

27 September 2002

*India’s letter – will revert in coming weeks – denied suspension

28 September 2002

*Pakistan’s letter – asked for meeting in October

18 October 2002

*Pakistan’s letter – urged for meeting in October and to suspend construction

7 November 2002

*India’s letter – inability to meet in October

18 November 2002

*Detailed letter to the Indian Commissioner for the next meeting & suspension of work

11 December 2002

*India’s letter – suggested meeting in January 2003

13 December 2002

*Pakistan’s reply – proposal accepted

4-6 February 2003

*Meeting at Islamabad – India refused to discuss ‘Questions’ under Article IX (1)

8 May 2003

*Pakistan Commissioner Indus Waters (PCIW) notice for the appointment of a Neutral Expert

28-30 May 2003

*Annual meeting held – could not prepare ‘statement of points of difference’

20 June 2003

*PCIW’s request to the two Governments for the appointment of a Neutral Expert

4 July 2003

*Government of Pakistan (GOP) Note Verbale – modalities for appointment of Neutral Expert

7 July 2003

*Government of India (GOI) Note Verbale – suggested bilateral discussion

18 August 2003

GOP Note Verbale – asked for

i) Suspension of work
ii) Site visit
iii) Time-bound resolution

19-23 October 2003

*Site inspection of the Plant – work was going on as per Indian design

24 November 2003

*Pakistan’s letter – construction contravenes the Treaty, in view of site inspection

6 December 2003

*GOP Note Verbale – reminded for suspension and time-bound resolution

18 December 2003

*GOI Note Verbale – suggested Commission-level meeting

27 December 2003

*GOP Note Verbale – accepted proposal to have meeting to discuss & resolve under Article IX (1)

13 January 2003

*GOI Note Verbale – meeting to be held under Article VIII (5) and not IX (1)

15 January 2004

*Pakistan’s letter – Article VIII (5) not relevant; meeting to discuss under Article IX (1)

15-19 January 2004

*Special Meeting of the Commission – India refused to discuss ‘Question’ under Article IX (1) – ended on deadlock

26-29 May 2004

*Annual meeting – India urged bilateral resolution; Pakistan maintained its position for suspension and time-bound resolution

3 June 2004

*Meeting between Indian Minister for External Affairs and the Pakistan High Commissioner at New Delhi – Proposal for Secretary-level talks was finalized

22 June 2004

*Secretary-level talks were held at New Delhi – A time-bound resolution agreed to

6 July 2004

*GOP Note Verbale – to confirm proceedings of Talks and to confirm understanding reached between the Water Secretaries

10 August 2004

*GOP Note Verbale – initiated process for time-bound resolution

10 September 2004

*GOP Note Verbale – reminded to start process for time-bound resolution

13 September 2004

*GOI Note Verbale – proposed another round of talks

10 October 2004

*GOP Note Verbale – to expedite starting of time-bound resolution as per Talks

24 November 2004

*Meeting of Prime Ministers of the two countries at New Delhi – decided to hold one more meeting at Secretary-level on the issue of Baglihar Hydroelectric Plant/Dam as a last attempt to resolve the issue

25 November 2004

*Indian Commissioner’s letter – referring to the first Secretary-level meeting; anticipated to supply all possible information by mid-December, 2004

27 November 2004

*GOP Note Verbale – proposed to hold the final meeting between Water Secretaries of Pakistan and India on 6th December 2004

1-2 December 2004

*GOI Note Verbale & letter from Indian High Commission at Islamabad – Talks between Secretaries of Water Resources would be more effective after Pakistan has examined relevant data provided by India and suggested the meeting could take place in end December, 2004

11 December 2004

*Pakistan’s Prime Minister chaired an informal meeting of all relevant Ministries – instructions were issued for holding the last meeting with India

15 December 2004

*GOI supplied requisite data/information through Indian High Commission; Islamabad data has been examined by all relevant departments/organisations. Pakistan’s objections on the design of Baglihar Plant are maintained and even further substantiated with new data supplied by India

3 – 7 January 2005

*Meeting as agreed between the two Prime Ministers was held at New Delhi at the level of Water Secretaries of Pakistan and India
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The U.S. has adopted a proactive policy towards Pakistan in the post-Musharraf era. Its primary strategic objective remains the same, i.e., ensuring greater Pakistani participation in the war against the Taliban - especially the Afghan Taliban that attempt to find sanctuaries in South and North Waziristan. Consequently, it supports the democratically elected coalition government in Islamabad that is dominated by the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) and has offered enhanced assistance for economic and educational development while also maintaining traditional relations with the army. Such assistance is manifest in a calibrated flow of military aid and equipment to Pakistan.

Pakistan holds strategic importance not just in South Asia but also in the global arena. Because of its strategic position in the war on terror, it has increasingly been viewed by American officials, in the context of the situation in Afghanistan, as a major partner in the campaign to destroy Al Qaeda and the Taliban network.

Pakistan, however, faces serious dilemmas regarding its partnership with the U.S. Its security situation is deteriorating day by day, suicide bombings and indiscriminate terrorist attacks show no signs of abating, and this raises the bar of its partnership with the U.S. Pakistan perceives a potential threat to its own stability due to additional troop deployment by U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan. This may pose multiple challenges to Pakistan’s counter-terrorism offensive as the Afghan Taliban seek to evade American pressure by attempting to take refuge on the Pakistani side of the border.

Though the U.S. and Pakistan share decades of friendship, the relationship has remained unstable. Misgivings regarding events in the past generate anti-American sentiments which are widespread among the masses, and also prevalent in certain pockets of the ruling elite. Consequently, the growth of an effective relationship between the two countries requires a deep understanding of the needs of Pakistani leadership, army, civil society as well as the common people.

The Obama administration’s lengthy review of the war on terror has produced the ‘Af-Pak’ terminology – signifying two countries but a single common enemy. This has also involved the notion of U.S. commitment to “destroy, disrupt and dismantle Taliban and Al Qaeda.” The Af-Pak strategy focuses on goals that the U.S. wishes to achieve in the region. After an approval of 30,000 more troops for Afghanistan, there is no doubt that a much stronger partner in Islamabad is needed if the strategy is to be successful. Washington has thus maintained considerable pressure on the PPP-led government, hoping to align the strategy being followed in Pakistan with the overall U.S. approach to the war.

Increasing Indian influence in Afghanistan is another concern for Pakistan that causes suspicion to rise against the U.S. Pakistan believes that it is facing a two-front situation - with India, its traditional rival on its eastern border and a potentially unwelcome regime in Kabul on the west; its security is deemed to be under constant threat. Moreover, India’s growing strategic relations with the U.S., as manifest in a civil nuclear deal and America’s indirect encouragement to regional powers in its plans for Afghanistan, is also worrisome for Pakistan.

The arrival of further troops in Afghanistan, the consistent pressure on Pakistan to ‘do more’, and a tacit approval of the increase of drone strikes in the country’s tribal land are all prominent issues that show the limits of the alliance.

The question of U.S. withdrawal and how it is going to actualize is another alarming concern raised time and again. Pakistan fears that after the withdrawal, it will have to choose between the devil and the deep sea. In both cases it will likely face huge losses and bear the brunt of potential chaos. Things have certainly not been looking upwards – in 2009 alone, the country witnessed 173 suicide attacks killing hundreds of innocent civilians and armed forces personnel. Needless to say, it is already paying a heavy price for its involvement in the war on terror, one part of which has been its military operations in South Waziristan.

Since 2001, Pakistan has received approximately $10.6 billion from the U.S.; out of this, sixty per cent fell under the Coalition Support Funds (CSF), thirty per cent shared equally by security assistance and budget support programmes, and the remaining ten per cent has been for development assistance. Despite the financial help, Pakistan remains stressed, with problems of rising poverty and unemployment becoming ingredients for militancy and Talibanisation. Matters are not helped when a perception of encirclement – with India to the east and an Afghanistan allied with the U.S. and India to its west – fuels skepticism and wariness of American intentions.

Obama’s war policy on Pakistan and Afghanistan

President Obama first announced his strategy for Afghanistan and Pakistan in March 2009. This broadly underlined counterinsurgency efforts and also affirmed significant economic development assistance for Pakistan which had largely been ignored earlier. The greatest challenge to have emerged since then has been to plan for both short- and long-term stability by providing physical and socio-economic security to as much of the population as possible by using available resources efficiently.

U.S., Pakistan and the war on terror

The importance of a stable U.S. and Pakistan relationship can be measured from the large network of cooperation between the military outfits and the governments over many decades. Pakistan’s military leaders remain essential partners in the U.S.-led counterterrorism and counterinsurgency efforts, and General Kayani, the current Chief of the Army Staff, has shown strong commitment to fighting the Pakistani Taliban and Al Qaeda militants along the border shared with Afghanistan.

The main vehicle for bilateral military cooperation is the Defense Consultative Group (DCG). Moribund since 1997, it was reestablished during President Musharraf's visit to Washington in 2002. With the Obama administration coming to office, military relations have become even stronger. Both parties agreed that separate but conducive military operations would be carried out in the war on terror. This would involve intelligence sharing and also had the additional dimension that collective secret operations would be carried out if necessary.

Although General Kayani clearly recognises that Pakistan’s national security faces a near-term threat from militants within the country, India continues to be seen as the enduring threat. India's cooperation with Kabul and the reciprocal friendly attitude has in a way undermined U.S. and Pakistan cooperation since many defence strategists and army officials view the India-Afghanistan relationship with suspicion.

Pakistan has been busy fighting the war on terror, providing support to U.S. aims in the region. Even though the military has made good progress in its offensives in South Waziristan, many militants have fled to other parts of the country - including major cities such as Karachi and Lahore. In addition, Pakistan has assisted the U.S. and its NATO allies in many ways. It has offered bases for patrolling, reconnaissance and rescue operations, extended logistical support to troops operating in Afghanistan, and provided intelligence and air space for strikes against Taliban and Al Qaeda targets.

Despite such collaboration, however, another serious concern for both the U.S. and Pakistan is the increasing armed violence on several fronts including the rise of militant groups in the Punjab. Bruce Riedel, a former CIA officer, in an interview to Newsweek in its issue dated October 21, 2009, said that the Punjabi Taliban, who are heavily influenced by the Afghan Taliban, are now a more serious concern. Their ability to band together with the Taliban into a single jihadist outfit is raising grave new challenges in the region.

The rising phenomenon of suicide bombing has also remained unaddressed. In 2006, there were only six suicide bombings; in 2007, the number went up to fifty, and 2008 saw at least sixty-one such attacks. Reportedly, the initial missions were led by Arab and Al Qaeda zealots, but this has subsequently been taken over by members of the Haqqani network as well as by close associates of Baitullah Mehsud, including Qari Hussein.

U.S. Secretary of Defence Robert Gates in a recent visit to Pakistan has offered to provide the country with unarmed, unmanned surveillance planes. The deal would give Pakistan 12 Shadow UAV unarmed surveillance drones that can be used to spy on militants. In an interview to foreign journalists, General Kayani said: “We’re talking to the U.S. and [NATO forces]. We are interested in getting more involved in training of the Afghan national army. It is good for short term and long term.”

However, despite Pakistan’s relentless support to U.S. in its war on terror, it remains under scrutiny in the Western media and among policymakers as its commitment towards defeating Taliban and Al Qaeda elements is questioned time and again.

Obama’s second review of war policy

Terrorism has become a global phenomenon with multilayered transnational connections among militants. Had the U.S. not abandoned Afghanistan after Soviet withdrawal at the end of the Cold War, and instead paid more attention to the rebuilding and reconstruction of the country’s socio-economic and governance structures, the situation today could have been much better.

In his second review of war policy towards Afghanistan and Pakistan, the Obama administration has attempted to ensure that the same mistakes are not repeated. By aiming ‘to disrupt, dismantle and defeat Al Qaeda in Pakistan and Afghanistan,’ President Obama has adopted what has been called the ‘McChrystal light’ strategy, so-called after the commander of the ISAF forces in Afghanistan. The basic concept of the strategy is sound – it calls for an increased focus on protecting Afghan civilians to reduce the space in which the Taliban can operate, and endorses capacity-building of the government.

By promising to bring an end to the war, the Obama administration faces a distinct challenge since it is not simply a question of turning the page on the previous regime’s years of neglect and misguided policies in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Obama has made it clear to Kabul that “there will be no open cheques and no open-ended commitment.” He emphasizes that America has paid a tremendous price and cannot afford a prolonged war in Afghanistan; this has caused much alarm in Kabul. Moreover, there is a U.S. pledge to start bringing back its forces from the middle of 2011.

The central idea behind publicly announcing this potential withdrawal was to put pressure on the Afghan government. The hope is that this will cause the regime to address the main issues of governance, including corruption, and to concentrate on developing Afghan forces for national security.

Even though the second review of the Afghan war covered most elements in and around Afghanistan and Pakistan, it failed to address the concerns of Indian involvement, interest and influence in Afghanistan. Moreover, with its enhanced relations with Washington, New Delhi is more capable of achieving its goals in Kabul.

New Delhi’s influence in Kabul, and on Washington, can provide India the opportunity with which to enter into and manipulate international coalition forces that are fighting in Afghanistan, and this could ultimately lead to their placing Pakistan on the hit list. There are two emerging trends in the war that can perhaps give credence to such a notion. Firstly, the trend of suicide bombing that target civilians as well as government and army personnel, and secondly, the disguised attacks by the Taliban and Al Qaeda on high-profile U.S. military officers.

According to a report published by the Department of State’s office of the special representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan on a regional stabilization strategy, a major focus of the President’s review was the importance of Pakistan to American efforts in Afghanistan, regional stability, as well as U.S. national security and foreign policy interests.

Key features


The war policy has a central aspect of a ‘surge’. While traditionally attributed to an increase in troops on the grounds, this concept has a multidimensionality that needs to be examined. This represents surges on several fronts.

Civilian surge: A substantial influx of troops as per the surge policy is also accompanied by a ‘civilian surge’ that addresses ineffective and corrupt governance structures and introduces population-centric ground strategies. This will lead to an increase in the number of diplomats and experts in many socio-economic fields such as reconstruction of infrastructure, health, education and agriculture

Contractor surge: Prior to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, a contractor surge was not deeply incorporated in wars and contractors’ presence was felt only on an ad hoc basis. However, with a troop surge, a contractor surge has also occurred. Reportedly, as many as 56,000 contractors have been hired separately. According to a report by the Congressional Research Service (CRS), the types of services they provide are similar to those in Iraq, including logistics, construction, linguistic services, and transportation.

Militia surge: This refers to the ‘mini’ surge in support of local Afghan militias that could aid in the fight against terrorists.

Twin troop surge: A twin troop surge means that the policy is not only meant to rout the Afghan Taliban militarily, but there are also efforts to strike a political deal with the enemy. Seeing that military might is not posing serious threats, the U.S. has now turned towards pursuing indirect talks with Taliban leaders.

CIA and Special Forces surge: By sending spies and carrying out covert operations in tribal areas of Pakistan, this policy seeks to ensure that the surge mentality in Afghanistan is replicated on the other side of the border. Pakistan consequently faces two main challenges that need to be overcome:

1. A troop surge near the border will, in all likelihood, result in a Taliban spill-over into the already troubled province of Balochistan in addition to complicating the military offensive in South Waziristan, and
2. Pakistan’s strategic interests in Afghanistan after U.S. withdrawal are also affected; a Pakistan-friendly government in Kabul is desired in order to reduce Indian influence in the country.

Expansion of drone strikes

A significant escalation of drone attacks inside Pakistani tribal region has also been accompanied by the yet unfulfilled idea of expanding the attacks to areas of southern Punjab where militant leaders are reportedly taking shelter. Such an approach may also include other parts of the country; for instance, Balochistan; where the Quetta Shura led by Mullah Omar is still reportedly active. The issue of drone attacks has become a sour point in relations between Washington and Islamabad since they have resulted in heavy civilian casualties – an issue that complicates Pakistan’s role in America's war on terror.

Between 2004 and 2009, there have been 99 drone strikes in Pakistan with 506 reported deaths, including both militants and civilians. Given that the Taliban insurgency has grown in recent years, especially in parts of Punjab and Balochistan, the new strategy of war pushes the idea of drone strikes in these areas. Drones attacks for now are the primary method for targeting militant hideouts in the northwestern part of the country. U.S. defense analysts and policymakers believe that their positive effects are measurable and that they avoid coalition casualties. They are also credited with creating a sense of insecurity among militants and constraining interaction among their networks.

However, open-source reports from Pakistan suggest that attacks since early 2006 have killed around 14 militant leaders and over 700 civilians - over fifty civilians for every militant killed. According to a report published by the New America Foundation, there are three major ‘strategic concerns’ in relation to drone strikes inside Pakistan:

1. They can be legally challenged,
2. They do not constitute a strategy, but rather a reactionary tactic,
3. Their unpopularity with the people of Pakistan is increasing at an alarming rate.

To be more precise, a New America Foundation report mentions 115 strikes in the northwest since 2004, including 19 in 2010 that have killed between 837 and 1,221 individuals, of whom around 552 to 854 are described as militants. In effect, the civilian fatality ratio comes out to be a rather embarrassing 32 per cent if these reports are to be believed. Due to such inefficiency, drone strikes come under constant criticism and their unpopularity is acting as a catalyst for recruitment to extremist groups.

The ‘do more’ dilemma

In the wake of the war on terror, Pakistan emerged as a frontline partner to the U.S. Since then, it has played a critical role in helping reduce the operational capabilities of Al Qaeda and Taliban elements in and around its border with Afghanistan.

However, there are concerns of how the collaboration works in this process. Pakistan is in fact still unable to decipher (decode) President Obama’s war strategy completely. It was expected that besides the announced approach, President Osama’s West Point speech would include guarantees that India’s increasing influence and presence in Afghanistan would be curtailed. Islamabad has handed over more terrorists and suspects to the U.S. than any other coalition partner and remains fully committed to the war, although many questions have been raised regarding its interests. Thus, it feels that its concerns regarding India have been undermined by the U.S.

This combination of several factors has created a situation in which many Pakistanis are skeptical about the need for combating militancy and supporting the American cause. Though the ruling political elite seem to be comfortable in accepting what U.S. has to offer, media and parliamentary debates reflect an opinion more reflective of the general population, i.e., the United States is making unreasonable demands of the Pakistani governing and military structures.

Going by the course of military action witnessed during most of 2008, it becomes obvious that U.S. and NATO forces are chasing Al Qaeda and the Haqqani- Hekmetyar networks in the border regions, while Pakistani forces have been tasked with hunting down the Pakistani Taliban in Bajaur, Mohmand and Khyber Agencies. As a result, Islamabad has been pushed to deliver more, while it is cornered into a situation where it can deliver less. Washington is mounting immense pressure on Pakistan to expand its operation to North Waziristan and target the Haqqani network and other militants active in the region. However, the military is tied up in an offensive in South Waziristan and cannot afford to engage its forces on another front.

Many analysts in the U.S. policymaking circles believe that the army is reluctant to move into North Waziristan since it still considers the Taliban as a ‘possible good’ against a ‘possible evil’, the latter being India. The U.S. needs to revive a partnership with Pakistan’s leaders and its people, and address a full range of human security challenges that plague the country if it is to succeed in its Afghanistan-Pakistan war.

U.S. exit strategy and Pakistan

The U.S exit strategy from Afghanistan has met severe criticism. Critics have insisted that that the Taliban would simply wait out the withdrawal period, living up to their idea of ‘you have the watches, we have the time!’ For Pakistan, it is a matter of concern that has alarmed military officials as well as politicians. Though the strategy itself was cautiously welcomed by many partners in the war, Pakistan was perhaps the only ally that did not endorse it at all.

A decade of instability in Afghanistan has without a doubt resulted in a militant spill-over in the border areas. A greater threat is likely to arise if the U.S. abandons the country following potential withdrawal starting in 2011, leaving Pakistan high and dry as it has done in the past. Needless to say, however, an exit strategy plan during an active war being fought on the ground is not as simple a concept as it may seem since there are long-term strategic goals in Afghanistan for the U.S. as well.

The U.S. sees Afghanistan as a platform from where it can extend its influence in Central Asia, the greater Middle East and also try to neutralize China. Many Pakistanis believe that the U.S. strategically uses the country according to its requirements, abandoning it when the immediate utility passes. Any quick reversal of the policy being followed could be disastrous for regional security since it would most likely infuse fresh life into a dormant, but not dead, militancy.

U.S. policymakers tasted remarkable success in the beginning of the military operations in Afghanistan soon after 9/11 when they overthrew the Taliban regime and introduced a democratic government. But, over time, ineffectiveness has seeped in and policies have not worked in their favor; it was this poor planning that led to troubles in Afghanistan and hence the scaling down of a mission mid-way as the U.S. marched towards Iraq.

This turned out to be one of the biggest slip-ups of American policy since it gave the Taliban and Al Qaeda operatives a chance to regroup, recruit and rearm against Western forces. Many fear that the Taliban will now wait out and hide during enhanced troop presence or simply cross the border into Pakistan. The exit strategy has also raised the stakes for the Pakistani military and there are fears that it is not a viable idea since the militants will simply bide their time and wait until the foreign forces are gone before seeking power once again.

Additionally, Pakistan places little trust in President Karzai, whose government is marked with corruption charges. There are also doubts regarding the capability of the Afghan army to defend the country after the U.S. and NATO forces leave. Hence, the exit strategy in question has served to raise tensions tremendously.

Withdrawal from Afghanistan can be severely counterproductive. The dominant regional narrative – which is that the United States will abandon its friends without compunction – is likely to be reinforced if the strategy fails. Not only will it force Pakistan to reevaluate its position, Afghanistan will similarly be placed under further stress from the Taliban and Al Qaeda. Chances are that a civil war will ensue as a weak government, a disengaged population and a corrupt political and socio-economic system fails to address the most important issues in the country.

Economic assistance

Despite million of dollars worth of aid and assistance to Pakistan, the U.S. is still seen as an unreliable ally. Only one-tenth of all the aid given in the past few years has been spent on education, health care and other socio-economic projects. The rest is directly invested in the military operations through coalition support funds.

On September 24, 2009, the U.S. Congress passed a new bill that was signed into law by President Obama on October 15 the same year. The Kerry-Lugar Bill (KLB) as it was named under the Enhanced Partnership Act 2009, attracted severe opposition and criticism in Pakistan despite the fact that it aimed at improving the civilian sector and socio-economic conditions.

The bill was compared to the controversial and unpopular Pressler Amendment of 1985. Because of its language and attached conditions, it gave the impression of attacking Pakistan’s sovereign status and humiliating its army’s efforts in the war on terror. The U.S. has defended the KLB by portraying it as an effort to cultivate long-term commitment with Pakistan on a civilian platform. Regardless of its meaning and purpose, it clearly chalked out anti-American sentiments and a continuing trust deficit even though it aims at long-term ties with Pakistan.

The main agenda of the KLB is to reach directly to the people and invest funds to their social development. It seeks to shift focus from military assistance to public expenditure, assuring improvement across multiple sectors including education, health, providing livelihood and building new public institutions. Hence, it is a distinct step since aid in the last decade has largely been dominated by defence expenses.

U.S.-Pakistan strategic dialogue 2010

President John F. Kennedy once stated that “the only thing worse than being an enemy of the United States is being an ally.” This can easily be applied to Pakistan as the two have shared an off-again, on-again relationship. Over the last decade, Pakistan has played a vital part in the fight against terrorism, suffered tremendous casualties, and witnessed worsening security conditions as well as a deteriorating economy. Compared to any other nation involved in the war, its physical and material sacrifices have been immense.

However, with the aforementioned issues straining ties between the two countries, there was a need felt to engage in a ‘strategic dialogue’. Despite the fact that Pakistan and the U.S. have held such meetings in the past, the controversial strategic dialogue of March 2010 was characterized as an updated version that was more concerned with Pakistan’s concerns. It was also significant since it was the first strategic dialogue to be held at the ministerial level.

The dialogue attempts to offer a new format for engagement by bringing in a transparent mechanism and attempting to ensure timely results. The framework also allows for a follow-up with a multi-track approach. The meetings were seen as a chance to reduce the trust deficit that has existed for so long, and gave an opportunity to address misconceptions among people from both countries.

The basic agenda of Pakistan revolved largely around four focal points:

1. To get a deal similar to the civil nuclear deal the U.S. has offered to India,
2. The transfer of both missile-launch and surveillance drone technologies as well as F-16 combat aircraft,
3. To receive timely payments from the Coalition Support Funds, and
4. Minimising Indian involvement in Afghanistan.

Another fifty-six pages with a list of priorities was presented by Pakistan. This included widespread issues related to national security concerns, Indian role in Afghanistan, long-term military modernization, provision of military hardware and economic development. More specifically, it asked for an expanded export market for agriculture, infrastructural development, market access and trade concessions, relief on textile tariffs, assistance in energy programmes, thermal power station rehabilitation projects, a multi-year security assistance package as well as social protection needs among other areas of concern.

Pakistan’s role in Afghanistan remained the subject of intense scrutiny between military officials. Reconciliation with the Taliban and reintegration of insurgents also covered much time of the talks. Concerns were raised by the Pakistani military regarding U.S. withdrawal and this led to reassurances that a substantial military presence will remain in Afghanistan long after withdrawal begins in 2011. Assurance was also given that Indian involvement in Afghanistan would be minimized.

With such a broad agenda, and the fact that some of Pakistan’s key concerns were addressed, the dialogue was largely hailed as a success. Both Pakistan and the U.S. saw it as an opportunity to engage directly on a full range of issues and mutual political, economic and social problems that require a shared responsibility came to the forefront. Hillary Clinton remarked in a press conference that the U.S. was happy to “listen and engage with Pakistani partners on whatever issues the delegation raises.” And, by and large, this undertaking was adhered to.

The U.S. remained silent, however, on the issue of civil nuclear technology as this would effectively confer legitimacy on Pakistan as a nuclear power. This was a subject of great scrutiny, and among General Kayani’s top agenda items. The U.S. made no clear statements, stating that this was a question for greater debate, and officials remarked that such an agreement would realistically be ten or fifteen years away. There are two possible reasons for this reluctance; one, the continued discomfort in Washington over Dr. A. Q Khan’s proliferation record, and two, it may not be seen to be in the long-term interest of the U.S. to make similar deals with both Pakistan and India.

Among the specific agreements, there was an announcement by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) that it would help Pakistan upgrade three thermal power plants. Deputy Secretary of State Jacob J. Lew and Pakistan’s Finance Secretary Salman Siddique signed a letter of intent regarding cooperation in the construction of priority roads in the reconstruction of the Malakand region. The project will cost $40 million to upgrade two key roads: the Peshawar Ring Road and another road from Kanju to Madyan in Swat, in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.

There was also an agreement to create Reconstruction Opportunity Zones in Pakistan for which the U.S. promised $125 million, and it is hoped that this money is not taken out of the controversial Kerry-Lugar Bill. The U.S. has also offered 400 megawatts of energy to Pakistan to build thermal power stations; however, this is a very small amount, given the magnitude of the energy crisis prevailing in Pakistan.

Both sides also agreed to establish a ‘Policy Steering Group’ which will take care of many common interest areas such as energy, defense, law-enforcement, counterterrorism, science and technology, education, health, agriculture and water. On the water issue, a separate sectoral dialogue track was also announced which will take care of issues such as water conservation, U.S. assistance in water projects and construction of dams and bridges.

It is naïve for Pakistan to expect any big breakthroughs overnight but it is hoped that a continuation of these talks will bring a new level of partnership with the U.S. However, Pakistan should realise that whatever the U.S. has committed to as a result of the dialogue will be subject to Congressional approval which is a long process. Much depends on Pakistan’s own progress in fighting insurgencies along its Afghanistan border, as well as on the parallel fight of NATO forces in the upcoming Kandahar operation.

As expected, there was no concrete outcome of the strategic dialogue, but it does to some extent present a framework that had been missing before. The talks also emphasized Pakistan’s position in front of U.S., and sensitive issues that were earlier left untouched, came to the forefront. However, the success of the meetings can only be measured when they translate into results and long-term progress.

In short, the strategic dialogue was neither a complete success nor a failure. It is time for Pakistan to realise that it should not place its dealings with the U.S. at the cost of its relations with regional countries. Iran has offered 2,200 MW of energy assistance to Pakistan which is half of all its energy requirements. The current electricity shortage in the country is now at 5,000 megawatts and what the U.S. has offered does not amount to much. Besides, the promises that the U.S. has made will eventually come at a cost; and Pakistan needs to define its policies more effectively for a secure and stable future.

The Indian angle

Apart from its progress in Afghanistan, the greatest challenge facing the U.S. in the region is its handling of a perpetual India-Pakistan rivalry. The U.S. role in this scenario has increased since Pakistan’s relations with India are now seen from an Afghan perspective. India and Pakistan have always competed to achieve strategic agendas in Afghanistan; while the former considers its influence and presence in Afghanistan as a strategic geopolitical constraint on Pakistan as well as a gateway to Central Asia, the latter has deep cultural and historic ties because of a common border with a Pashtun ethnic majority on both sides.

Over the years, both India and Pakistan have provided assistance to Afghanistan where the main focus has been infrastructure development. India is the second largest aid provider and has promised $750 million over the next few years. Pakistan on the other hand has committed $200 million and also hosts the largest number of Afghan refugees. However, while Pakistan has been an all-weather friend, its role has been greatly disregarded and misjudged; but India, due to its close ties with the former Northern Alliance members in the Karzai government, enjoys a much more active role in Afghanistan today.

After the events of 9/11, India provided intelligence, naval escorts through the Strait of Malacca, and diplomatic and political support to the United States. Plus, its ties with the Northern Alliance were a significant factor in its future activities in the country since the Northern Alliance is anti-Taliban, and by default hostile towards Pakistan due to its Taliban contacts.

Pakistan, for its part, has time and again attempted to pursue a healthy relationship with India after the Mumbai attacks, but certain elements in India have prevented any progress on this front. The differences are immense and have made it difficult for the international community to become a bridge between both countries. Suspicion of each other’s intent through involvement in Afghanistan has also not helped matters. The Obama administration has made it clear that it will not directly mediate between India and Pakistan, but would instead help bring them together to address their common issues including terrorism and Kashmir.

Afghanistan and India blame Pakistan for harbouring militants and terrorists on its soil. Their officials have often referred to Pakistan as a “significant enabler for insurgency” in the region. Pakistan, on the other hand, blames Afghanistan for its negligence towards a burgeoning arms and drug trade, while also holding India responsible for running covert operations against Pakistan.

Pakistani officials have strongly denied that they continue to hold relations with Taliban elements either in Pakistan or in Afghanistan. Due to successful operations in South Waziristan and the arrest of some key militants, it has to some extent shown its sincerity to the cause. It has even contributed to the creation of an intelligence establishment in Kabul to monitor its border areas with Afghanistan along with the Afghans and NATO’s International Security Assistance Force (ISAF).

However, according to many analysts, the close relationship between the U.S. and India is also a factor that hinders progress on the Pakistan-U.S. front. Washington sees India as a source of stability in Afghanistan since it has made heavy investments over the past few years. However, Pakistan’s Military Intelligence (MI) and Intelligence Bureau (IB) officials also often allude to the “invisible Indian hand” in creating unrest in Balochistan and damaging gas power infrastructure worth several billion rupees.

These views have not been totally ignored. Clifford May at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, said in an interview to Voice of America News that the U.S. needs to put some pressure on India to ensure that it is helpful in every regard. This should be done keeping in mind the importance of Pakistan in the war on terror since it is very important that Pakistan be reassured that it faces no threat on its eastern borders.

India-U.S. relations over the years have developed a new paradigm. They have strengthened in many areas, but specifically it is the military ties where enhancement has been most significant. Hence, while their ties have expanded vertically as well as horizontally, numerous difficulties have been created for Pakistan in the process.

Reconciliation – issues and dilemmas

Desperate to save a faltering military campaign, U.S. policy is coming another full circle as Washington prepares to strike deals with ‘moderate’ factions of the Taliban. The real question, though, is regarding the shape and content of any such negotiations. It is also imperative that the costs and benefits of the approach are worked out at the outset. The process is likely to involve three groups of the Afghan population: the high-level Taliban or the leaders, the medium-level Taliban or the operators, and lastly, the locals.

Strategies and tactics

1. National reconciliation: This involves the introduction of a broad national reconciliation programme which includes equal representation of minorities.
2. Paying soldiers an incentive: Designed to effectively buy friendship, the idea is that if enemies cannot be defeated, they can be bought. This involves paying Afghan tribes and local or middle-ranking Taliban leaders to give up fighting in return for cash. In the Nangarhar province in eastern Afghanistan, the Shinwari tribe has, for instance, agreed to fight against the Taliban for which it will be paid $1 million.
3. Positive religious motivation.
4. Jobs, education and socioeconomic opportunities: Millions of dollars in foreign aid are funneled to villages that organize neighbourhood watch programmes to help with security issues. This will later also help avoid civilian confrontation when foreign forces leave Afghanistan.
5. Induction in government representation.
6. Humanitarian programmes.

London conference; Karzai’s six-point ‘action plan’

In the wake of the London conference in January 2010, President Hamid Karzai presented his six-point ‘Action Plan’ for Afghanistan. He announced it as the Taliban Reintegration Plan, with the stated aim to “offer an honourable place in society” to those insurgents who are willing to renounce Al Qaeda and who abandon violence and pursue their political goals peacefully in accordance with the constitution.

The plan largely frames six main agendas that can influence or manipulate the so-called ‘good’ or ‘moderate’ Taliban. As a token of support, Western leaders pledged $140 million for the first year with further finances to be determined according to the success of the initial plan. The six points refer to the following:

1. Peace and reconciliation,
2. Security,
3. Good governance,
4. Addressing corruption,
5. Regional cooperation, and
6. Economic development.


Pakistan’s history has been punctuated by an on-again, off-again partnership with the United States. Given widespread dissatisfaction among people at large, cooperation becomes even more limited and there remains a considerable gap between public sentiment and actual policy.

What is lacking is an action agenda that helps develop an approach which directly and positively impacts the population. Such an approach would allow the U.S. and Pakistan to collectively identify sectors and areas that need reforms and assistance in both long and short terms. One of these could, for instance, be terrorism. The Pakistani political establishment has come to recognize the danger of jihadis and identified the Taliban and Al Qaeda as a real threat to the future of Pakistan’s own stability just as the U.S. sees them as a major global issue.

NATO and U.S. should alter their strategy altogether in order to achieve long-term success in Afghanistan. They need to address the issue of Pashtun alienation, since behind the Taliban façade is a distinct Pashtun ethnicity. Foreign military occupation has helped unite, motivate and win support for disparate elements that we label the Afghan Taliban. NATO and U.S. do not openly admit the involvement of other actors in the region which include, among others, Uzbeks and Tajiks, who are not ethnically Pashtun but are continued to be labelled Taliban.

A strong Pakistan-U.S. alliance is critical for the stability of South Asia and the world at large. Washington must realise that Pakistan is not just a means with which it can dictate its foreign policy but has its own national interest, domestic and political imperatives and geopolitical concerns. Pakistan, on the other hand, must realise that it has to do more to settle its multifaceted internal crises. It has to fight the Taliban, Al Qaeda and other militant organisations in order to restore its credibility as an anti-terrorist State. Some of the steps that could be taken towards a long-term and stable relationship are:

1. Addressing immediate energy, water and related economic crises through short-tern humanitarian assistance.
2. Improving local police forces in counterterrorism and technical fields.
3. Controlling narcotics and drugs in the tribal areas of Afghanistan and Pakistan since these are the biggest source of income for extremists to purchase weapons and other material.
4. Controlling opium and poppy cultivation in the Pak-Afghan region.
5. Reaching out to different political parties, including those with limited regional constituencies, which could offer a means to enhance U.S.-Pakistan cooperation at the sub-national level.
6. Reforming the existing educational structure in rural and urban areas with the help of provincial governments to counter anti-U.S. sentiments among younger population, effectively preventing militant groups from capitalizing on their vulnerabilities.
7. Stabilising Afghanistan through peace talks and agreements with the Pashtun tribal leaders and with the Taliban who are willing to come to the negotiating table.
8. Developing the tribal areas on both sides of the Pakistan-Afghanistan border so that insurgents are unable to find sanctuaries and support bases.
9. Addressing the Kashmir issue by getting India and Pakistan to negotiate. The U.S. should encourage changes in the dynamics of the Indo-Pakistan relations to reduce tension on both sides.
10. Providing better salaries and specialized counterterrorism training to the Pakistani police force.
11. Broadening the anti-militant campaign nationwide, especially in rural areas of Punjab and in the Afghan-Pakistan border region.


Pakistan is going through a long-drawn-out internal crisis; a coalition government struggling with a difficult situation inherited from the previous regime is facing uncertain relations with its neighbours as well as with its allies in the war on terror. It confronts issues of rampant inflation, increased terrorist activity nationwide and a dire energy shortage. Dramatic reforms are needed in almost every sector to restore economic and political stability.

Pakistan is also concerned about Indian penetration in Afghanistan. Being a strategic partner, the U.S. should take responsibility for restraining India’s activities, especially in areas close to the Pakistan-Afghanistan border. With its crucial position in South Asia, its long-running enmity with India and its porous border with Afghanistan, any threat of potential failure in Pakistan represents the greatest strategic threat facing the current international system.

There is an urgent need for broader dialogue between Pakistan and the U.S. at the strategic, political, diplomatic and economic levels. Constructive and productive opportunities should be created to cultivate the relationship and improve the image of the U.S. as a reliable ally. America needs Pakistan in order to fight and defeat its enemies, but Pakistan, being a frontline ally, has already suffered heavy losses. It is necessary for the U.S. to assure its commitment to the Pakistani society, civil-bureaucratic leadership and the army, and ensure that this time the relationship is going to last.

Washington has since the events of 9/11 reacted to events in and around Afghanistan under the pretext of Islamist extremist and anti-West terrorism. This fails to assess the relevance of the situation according to regional dynamics and thus in shaping an appropriate response.

The rise of insurgencies in Afghanistan and a politically weak and corrupt government have left political and psychological scars on the country. The West needs to remember that the Taliban and Al Qaeda were joint products which the U.S. and Pakistan produced to counter the Soviet Union in the 1990s. The path ahead must be multi-prolonged to deal with the challenges at hand. Both Pakistan and the U.S. should design assistance programmes on military as well as civilian platforms to empower the relationship, overcome the trust deficit and eliminate anti-American perceptions. This is essential to reach goals that are broadly compatible with the interests of both countries and enable them to defeat a common enemy.
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Truly,you are praiseworthy and glorious.
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v nice work. COuld you plz post the source of the article about Pak - US relations.

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Default Iran's Nuclear Program

Iran's Nuclear Program
Author: Greg Bruno

1. Introduction
2. Atoms from America
3. Second Thoughts on a Nuclear Iran
4. Known Capabilities
5. Unanswered Questions
6. Sanctions and Saber Rattling
Iran's leaders have worked to pursue nuclear energy technology since the 1950s, spurred by the launch of U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower's Atoms for Peace program. It made steady progress, with Western help, through the early 1970s. But concern over Iranian intentions followed by the upheaval of the Islamic Revolution in 1979 effectively ended outside assistance. Iran was known to be reviving its civilian nuclear programs during the 1990s, but revelations in 2002 and 2003 of clandestine research into fuel enrichment and conversion raised international concern that Iran's ambitions had metastasized beyond peaceful intent.
Iran has consistently denied allegations it seeks to develop a bomb. Yet many in the international community remain skeptical. Despite a U.S. intelligence finding in November 2007 that concluded Iran halted its nuclear weapons program in 2003, the Bush administration warned that Iran sought to weaponize its nuclear program, concerns the Obama administration shares. Nonproliferation experts note Iran's ability to produce enriched uranium continues to progress but disagree on how close Iran is to mastering capabilities to weaponize.
The September 2009 revelation of a second uranium enrichment facility near the holy city of Qom--constructed under the radar of international inspectors--deepened suspicion surrounding Iran's nuclear ambitions. The West's fears were confirmed in mid-February 2010 when the IAEA released a report that detailed Iran's potential for producing a nuclear weapon, including further fuel enrichment and plans for developing a missile-ready warhead.
Atoms from America
Iran's efforts to develop nuclear energy trace to 1957, in connection with a push from the Eisenhower administration to increase its military, economic, and civilian assistance to Iran. On March 5 of that year, the two countries announced a "proposed agreement for cooperation in research in the peaceful uses of atomic energy" under the auspices of Eisenhower's Atoms for Peace program. The deal was intended to open doors for U.S. investment in Iran's civilian nuclear industries, such as health care and medicine. The plan also called for the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission to lease Iran up to 13.2 pounds of low-enriched uranium (LEU) for research purposes.
Two years after the agreement was made public, Shah Mohammed Reza Pahlavi ordered the establishment of an institute at Tehran University--the Tehran Nuclear Research Center--and negotiated with the United States to supply a five-megawatt reactor. Over the next decade the United States provided nuclear fuel and equipment that Iran used to start up its research. Gary Samore, President Obama's top expert on weapons of mass destruction, told in 2008 that the cooperation was meant to assist Iran in developing nuclear energy while steering Tehran away from indigenous fuel-cycle research. On July 1, 1968, Iran signed the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) on the day it opened for signature. Six years later Iran completed its Safeguards Agreement with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).
By the 1970s, France and Germany joined the United States in providing assistance to the Iranian nuclear program. Regional wars and predictions of a looming energy shortfall prompted the shah to explore alternative forms of power production. In March 1974, he established the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran, and announced plans to "get, as soon as possible, 23,000 megawatts [of electricity] from nuclear power stations." By the mid-1970s, Iran had signed contracts with Western firms--including France's Framatome and Germany's Kraftwerk Union--for the construction of nuclear plants and supply of nuclear fuel.
Second Thoughts on a Nuclear Iran
Despite the early and sustained flow of nuclear technology to Tehran, Western governmental support for Iran's nuclear program began to erode ahead of the Islamic Revolution of 1979. In August 1974, a U.S. special national intelligence estimate (PDF) declared that while "Iran's much publicized nuclear power intentions are entirely in the planning stage," the ambitions of the shah could lead Iran to pursue nuclear weapons, especially in the shadow of India's successful nuclear test in May 1974.
"If Iran is willing to enter into serious negotiations, then they will find a willing participant in the United States and the other [partner] countries." - P.J. Crowley, U.S. State Department spokesman
This concern led Western governments to withdraw support for Iran's nuclear program. Pressure on France, which in 1973 signed a deal to build two reactors atDarkhovin, and Germany, whose Kraftwerk Union began building a pair of reactors at Bushehr in 1975, led to the cancellation of both projects. After the Islamic Revolution, the seizure of U.S. hostages, and termination of diplomatic relations in 1979, U.S. opposition to Iran's nuclear efforts increased during the 1980s and 1990s. Washington blocked nuclear deals between Iran and Argentina, China, and Russia. Mohammad Javad Zarif, the former Iranian ambassador to the United Nations, wrote in Columbia University's Journal of International Affairs in 2007 that Washington's shift away from supporting Iran's nuclear energy program left Tehran with little choice but to be discreet in its nuclear activities (PDF). "To avoid the [U.S.-led] restrictions and impediments," Zarif writes, "Iran refrained for disclosing the details of its programs."
Known Capabilities
The withdrawal of Western support after the Islamic Revolution slowed Iran's nuclear progress. And a confluence of factors--opposition to nuclear technology by Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the exodus of nuclear scientists, and the destruction of Iraq's nuclear facility by Israel in 1981, which removed an immediate threat--sent Iran's nuclear program into a tailspin. But many nonproliferation experts believe Iran became interested again in a nuclear program by the mid-1980s. Leonard S. Spector, deputy director of the Center for Nonproliferation Studies, writes there is evidence Iran received assistance from Pakistani nuclear scientist AQ Khanas early as 1985, though it wasn't until the death of Khomeini in 1989 that Tehran's efforts reached critical mass. [Khan, speaking to a Pakistani television journalist in August 2009, confirmed that his network assisted Iran (PDF) in contacting suppliers of nuclear technology].
Unlike his predecessor, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei held a more favorable view of nuclear energy and military technology, and set out to rebuild Tehran's program. Analysts also believe the discovery of Iraq's clandestine nuclear weapons program during the 1991 Gulf War, as well as a growing U.S. presence in the region, pushed Tehran to ramp up its research. In a boost to the civilian nuclear effort, Russia in January 1995 picked up where Germany left off, signing a contract with Iran to complete two 950-megawatt light-water reactors at Bushehr (with fuel supplied by Russia). In September 2008, the Russian company building the power plantreiterated its commitment (AFP) to finishing the project, while Moscow has said it hopes to fire up the reactor by the end of 2009 (Press TV). Iranian officials have also announced that the Darkhovin project has resumed, and plans call for a 360-megawatt reactor to be operational there by 2016. Iran--which has also turned to China, Pakistan, and North Korea for nuclear technology and assistance--claims it wants to build nuclear power plants to diversify its energy portfolio.

With an eye toward fueling these facilities with domestically produced fuel--and, many experts say, to develop a weapon--Iran has built a vast network (PDF) of uranium mines, enrichment plants, conversion sites, and research reactors. Of these facilities, about a dozen are considered major nuclear sites (PDF). For instance, the Isfahan Nuclear Technology Center employs as many as three thousand scientists and is suspected of housing Iran's weapons program, according to the U.S.-funded nonpartisan Congressional Research Service. Isfahan is also the location of Iran's uranium-conversion efforts, where approximately 366 tons of uranium hexafluoride has been produced since March 2004. This so-called feedstock is fed into centrifuges at another central site: the Natanz enrichment facility.
At Natanz, first-generation centrifuges (IR-1) purchased from Pakistan spin uranium hexafluoride at great speeds to increase the percentage of uranium-235, the principal ingredient for both power production and weapons capability. Natural uranium contains 0.7 percent of the uranium-235 isotope, and generally, light-water power reactors require enrichment levels of 3 percent to 5 percent (levels of low-enriched uranium, or LEU). Weapons-grade uranium--also known as highly-enriched uranium, or HEU--is around 90 percent (technically, HEU is any concentration over 20 percent, but weapons-grade levels are described as being in excess of 90 percent). According to the IAEA, Iran is capable of enriching to about 4.7 percent.
David Albright, an expert on Iran's nuclear program and president of the Institute for Science and International Security, estimates Iran is producing roughly 2.77 kg of LEU per day (PDF), a rate that has remained consistent throughout 2009. Mark Fitzpatrick, senior fellow for nonproliferation at the International Institute for Strategic Studies in London, says if Iran were to stockpile sufficient LEU they would be able to produce 25 kg of weapons-grade uranium for production of a single bomb "within a couple of months," a timeline Albright agreed with during a February 2009 interview with Iran is using centrifuges to enrich uranium hexafluoride gas, increasing the concentration of uranium-235. Senior American officials, speaking on background, told reporters in September 2009 that a second enrichment facility under construction near Qom could hold about 3,000 centrifuge machines. "Now, that's not a large enough number to make any sense from a commercial standpoint," the official said. "But if you want to use the facility in order to produce a small amount of weapons-grade uranium, enough for a bomb or two a year, it's the right size."
Unanswered Questions
International skepticism of Iranian intentions was first aroused in August 2002 when a London-based Iranian opposition group disclosed details about a secret heavy-water production plant at Arak, as well as the underground enrichment facility at Natanz. In May 2003, State Department spokesman Richard Boucher said the disclosure of Arak and Natanz raised serious questions about Iran's nuclear intentions. "We believe Iran's true intent is to develop the capability to produce fissile material for nuclear weapons," Boucher said, "using both the plutonium route (supported ultimately by a heavy-water research reactor) and the highly enriched uranium route (supported by a gas centrifuge enrichment plant)." These revelations, coupled with subsequent admissions from Iran that it has concealed aspects of its program, prompted the IAEA to intensify inspections.
"Iran has not cooperated with the Agency in connection with the remaining issues ... which need to be clarified in order to exclude the possibility of there being military dimensions to Iran´s nuclear program." -- IAEA Director General Mohamed ElBaradei
While international inspectors have never found concrete evidence linking Iran's nuclear program to weapons development, Iran's concealment of its program--like the partially constructed enrichment facility near Qom, which Western officials say was under construction for years before Iran's disclosure in the fall of 2009--has fed concerns. In a June 2003 report (PDF), IAEA inspectors concluded that Iran had failed to meet obligations under its Safeguards Agreement signed in 1974. Failures included withholding construction and design details of new facilities, and not reporting processed and imported uranium. Some undeclared shipments dated to 1991, the IAEA said.
International pressure following the revelations led Iran to temporarily cease its enrichment-related activities, and in late 2003 Tehran signed an Additional Protocol allowing the atomic agency greater access to nuclear sites. Negotiations with members of the European Union quickly followed (PDF). But on August 8, 2005, Iran announced it was resuming uranium conversion at Isfahan. By early 2006, IAEA inspectors confirmed that Iran had once again resumed its enrichment program. Today Iran operates thousands of IR-1 centrifuges-the majority at Natanz-though the total number of operational devices is unclear. [An August 2009 IAEA report found that 8,308 centrifuges were either enriching uranium or installed at the facility]. Construction of a commercial-scale facility at Natanz, which will house over fifty thousand centrifuges, is also under way.
Under the terms of the NPT, signatories have the "inalienable right" to produce fuel for civilian energy production, either by enriching uranium or separating plutonium. But the United States and other Western governments accuse Iran of failing to abide by NPT safeguards, and of pursuing technology to produce nuclear weapons. Paul K. Kerr of the Congressional Research Service wrote in a August 2009 report (PDF) that the principal proliferation concern is "Tehran's construction of a gas-centrifuge-based uranium-enrichment facility " at Natanz. Experts say enrichment of uranium hexafluoride gas is of particular concern, because producing weapons-grade fuel (HEU) is considered the most difficult aspect of the nuclear fuel cycle. Kerr also counts Iran's construction of a heavy-water reactor at Arak--which contains plutonium in its spent fuel--as another proliferation concern.
Albright, of ISIS, says Iranian enrichment capabilities are improving, a troubling development given Iran's continued refusal to answer IAEA questions about past activities. In February 2008, the IAEA presented Iran with intelligence collected by the United States that U.S. officials say proves Tehran worked to develop nuclear weapons in the recent past. The intelligence is believed to have been smuggled out of Iran on a laptop computer in 2004 and handed over to the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). The data included (PDF) alleged evidence of the so-called Green Salt project, a secret uranium-processing program; high-explosives testing; and design of a reentry vehicle "which could have a military nuclear dimension," the IAEA says. Iranian officials claim the data is fake. But the November 2007 U.S. National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) concluded that while Iran likely halted its weapons program in fall 2003, "Tehran at a minimum is keeping open the option to develop nuclear weapons" in the future. IAEA Director General Mohamed ElBaradei, speaking in September 2009, said Iran continues to be uncooperative on many fronts, making it impossible to determine Tehran's intent. "Iran has not cooperated with the Agency in connection with the remaining issues," he said, "which need to be clarified in order to exclude the possibility of there being military dimensions to Iran´s nuclear program."
Sanctions and Saber Rattling
The United States has imposed unilateral economic sanctions on Iran for nearlythree decades (Arms Control Today), but international efforts to cripple Iran's nuclear program have coalesced more recently. In September 2005, the IAEA Board of Governors expressed an "absence of confidence (PDF) that Iran's nuclear program is exclusively for peaceful purposes." Five months later, the board voted to refer Iran to the UN Security Council, and in December 2006, the UN Security Council adopted the first of a series of resolutions imposing sanctions to punish Iran for continued uranium enrichment. Resolution 1737 initiated a block on the sale or transfer of sensitive nuclear technology. Subsequent resolutions--the most recent in September 2008, which reaffirmed past mandates--added financial and travel sanctions on Iranian individuals and companies. In June 2008, the European Union imposed its own set of sanctions, freezing the assets of nearly forty individuals and entities doing business with Bank Melli, Iran's largest bank. Western officials have accused Bank Melli of supporting Iran's nuclear and missile programs.
Now some members of Congress are backing a bill that would authorize the White House to penalize foreign companies for selling refined petroleum to Iran. Some analysts support this approach, but former U.S. Ambassador to the UN John R. Bolton suggests only the threat of force (WSJ) can prevent an Iran nuclear bomb. CFR's Micah Zenko says Israel may be prepared to act (LAT) in that regard if the United States doesn't.
Despite increasing calls for a military solution, international diplomacy continues apace. In mid-2008, the European Union resubmitted a 2006 offer of incentives for Iran to give up its enrichment activities. In October 2009, talks between Iran, the United States, and other world powers ended in failure as Iran's leadership rejected a plan to send its uranium to the West (NYT), hours after Iranian negotiators agreed to the deal.
Iran continues to send mixed signals (PDF) regarding cooperation with the IAEA, though considerable evidence suggests Iran's defiance. In November 2009, the Iranian government approved ten new uranium enrichment plants (WashPost). In February 2010, escalation mounted when Iran announced plans to heighten the enrichment levels (CSMonitor) of existing uranium stockpiles and Ahmadinejad declared (NationalPost), on the Islamic Republic's thirty-first anniversary, Iran to be a "nuclear state." These developments and Iran's continued intransigence led the IAEA's new director general, Yukiya Amano, to publicly announce IAEA fears that Iran was working on nuclear weaponization. A February 2010 report read, "Iran has not provided the necessary cooperation to permit the agency to confirm that all nuclear material in Iran is in peaceful activities."
Russia and China traditionally have resisted calls for a fourth round of UN sanctions, but in March 2010 President Medvedev signaled that Russia was warming (Reuters)to the possibility of sanctions. China, however, continues to resist stronger sanctions, and its foreign minister announced in early March (Reuters) that sanctions will not solve the Iran nuclear issue.
U.S. officials remain committed to a bilateral, dual-track approach of both international sanctions and incentives. An example of this tactic is the March 2010 decision to allow the export of internet services (NYT) like instant messaging and file sharing to Iran. These services are intended to facilitate the free flow of information and undermine the regime's control over the media and communications.
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Truly,you are praiseworthy and glorious.
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Default Extremism and Pakistan.

In Pakistan, the relation between Islam and state has been a matter of great controversy. From the time of its inception, the opinion in the country has remained divided as to whether Pakistan is to be an Islamic/‘shariah’ state or a ‘modern’/‘secular’ Muslim-majority state.
The roots of this controversy could be traced to the various statements of the founder of Pakistan, Mohammad Ali Jinnah, which he gave during the independence movement and at the time of the emergence of Pakistan.
For example, in his 1940-article entitled “The Constitutional Future of India”, Jinnah stated:
“The British people, being Christians, sometimes forget the religious wars of their own history and today consider religion as a private and personal matter between man and God. This can never be the case in Hinduism and Islam, for these religions are definite social codes which govern not so much man’s relations with his God as man’s relations with his neighbor. They govern not only his law and culture, but every aspect of his social life, and such religions, essentially exclusive, completely preclude that merging of identity and unity of thought on which Western democracy is based, and inevitably bring about vertical rather than the horizontal divisions democracy envisages.” [1]
In marked contrast to the opinion expressed in the above-mentioned article, Jinnah as the designated Governor-General stated in the first Constituent Assembly of Pakistan on 11 August 1947:
“ . . . You may belong to any religion or caste or creed . . . that has nothing to do with the business of the state . . . We are starting in the days when there is no discrimination, no distinction between one community and another. We are starting with this fundamental principle that we are all citizens and equal citizens of one state.” He added, “. . .you will find that in course of time Hindus would cease to be Hindus and Muslims would cease to be Muslims, not in the religious sense, because that is the personal faith of each individual, but in political sense, as citizens of the state.” [2] The ‘two-nation theory’ had served its purpose and was duly repudiated. The two ‘nations’ __ Hindus and Muslims ___ were once again to be regarded as two ‘communities’ after independence.
Jinnah’s pronouncement of 11 August 1947 explicitly envisaged creation of a secular state in Pakistan. In doing so he was representing religious diversity of Pakistani society and plurality of Pakistani culture.
But the Ulema (Clergy) considered it a betrayal of the cause for which the South Asian subcontinent was partitioned into two sovereign states. Since then the ‘Objectives Resolution’ of 1949, the 22 Points of the Ulema framed in 1951, the anti-Ahmediya agitation of 1953, the ‘Islamic’ provisions of the Constitutions of 1956, 1962 and 1973, including the declaration of the Ahmediya community as being outside the pale of Islam through a constitutional amendment in 1974, General Zia’s ‘Islamization’ program and the ‘jihadi’ culture have reflected the conflicts and compromises between the adherents of diverse opinions as to the role of Islam in Pakistan.
Notwithstanding popular aspiration to establish some form of Islamic polity___ a legacy of the freedom struggle ____ the ethos of Pakistani society did not reflect religious extremism, at least till 1979.
In fact the society was prepared to accept many liberties in every-day life that the strict observance of Shariah would have denied it.
With economic development and exposure to foreign influences, it was opening up to modernism and adopting many western values. Ayub Khan’s period would be particularly known for this trend, for he had a penchant to modernize Pakistani society and his Family Laws Ordinance of 1961 is a testimony to the fact.
One has nostalgia for the social scene of the 1960s. There was no bar on performing arts, provided the presentations were apolitical.
The cinema halls offered latest Pakistani, Indian and Hollywood movies that as a part of urban culture were watched by families in decent environment.
Almost every urban locality had its wine shops and some sort of mini clubs for the youth. For the elite, the gymkhanas and nightclubs in the cities offered good venues to enjoy liquor, gambling and dancing.
There used to be prominent advertisements of floorshows with semi nude photographs of foreign performers in the newspapers. The racecourses attracted a lot of people on weekends.
The rich organized New Year parties without any hinder. Musical shows and functions without any impediment. Foreign tourists thronged the market places in the cities. Co-educational institutions were mushrooming.
The programs of Qawwali, (a form of recitation of Sufi poetry in the traditions of Hazrat Amir Khusro-the renowned Mystique and inventor of this form of religious rendition in praise of Allah, Prophet Mohammed (PBUH), and religious saints), was quite normal and used to draw huge audiences. Besides, rendition of Urdu Poetry in the well entrenched form of Mushaira was built into our lives and used to be a great form of _expression of our culture and traditions. The city life, particularly big cities like Karachi and Lahore, were known for these traditional forms of _expression of our aesthetic values.
The Coffee shops were built in to our day to day lives and were venues of diverse political, social and cultural debates, discourses and discussions. In short, there was no transformation in urban or rural culture that could have been specifically attributed to the creation of Pakistan in the name of Islam. Alas the traumatic events of 1971, culminating in the abject surrender of Pakistan armed forces in East Pakistan, did jolt the nation. Since the military ruler of the time, General Yahya Khan, and some of his close associates were notorious as drunkards and womanizers, the people blamed their waywardness as responsible for the disaster.
In the immediate aftermath of the tragedy, the unruly mobs attacked and burnt wine shops, nightclubs and cinema houses to vent their shock and grief. In this passing phase, there was much talk about the East Pakistan catastrophe as being a divine retribution for nation’s sins in deviating from the path of Islam and the dire need to revert back to what was popularly perceived as the real raison d’etre of Pakistan. With East Pakistan gone, Pakistan lost much of its religious diversity. Under pressure from the religious parties, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, who assumed power after the East Pakistan debacle, agreed to declare Islam the state religion of Pakistan in the Constitution of 1973.
He used the Islamic Summit Conference held at Lahore in February 1974 to project himself as one of the foremost leaders of the Islamic world. He also consented to declare the Ahmediya community as non-Muslim through a constitutional amendment in September 1974 after serious riots broke out on the issue.
By adopting such measures, Bhutto wanted to strengthen his Islamic credentials vis-à-vis ethno-regional and religious parties and compensate for his failure to deliver on economic front. But despite all this, Bhutto was never averse to cultural permissiveness and the ethos of Pakistani society did not undergo any change on that count.
His social liberalism was anathema to religious parties and the Casino, which Bhutto planned to construct on the Clifton beach, became a symbol of Bhutto’s cultural openness.
Considering himself firmly entrenched in the office, Bhutto advised President Fazle Elahi Chaudhry in the first week of January 1977 to dissolve the National Assembly and appoint 7 March as the date for next general elections.
In no time the hitherto divided opposition joined hands to form the Pakistan National Alliance (PNA) to confront Bhutto’s Pakistan People’s Party from a single platform.
In his desire to secure two-third majority that could have enabled him to amend the Constitution, Bhutto and his erstwhile colleagues and the then administration went for the overkill and the elections were massively rigged.
The PNA declined to accept the results and demanded resignation of Bhutto and holding of fresh elections under the supervision of the judiciary and the armed forces. The PNA picked up the slogan of ‘Nizam-i-Mustafa’ to infuse religious fervor in the movement that it launched to remove Bhutto.
The call for establishment of ‘Nizam-i-Mustafa’ became a rallying point and the urban populations, especially the bourgeois classes, were mesmerized by the romanticism of the utopia offered.
The workers of Jamaat-i-Islami (JI) and the pupils belonging to the madrassahs of Jamiat-i-Ulema-i-Islam (JUI)) spearheaded the PNA agitation to remove Bhutto from power.
With the involvement of foreign hand, the movement gathered momentum and the government became ineffective in maintaining law and order. Even the use of troops failed to stop the processions chanting slogans of ‘Nizam-I-Mustafa’ that daily poured out from the mosques. As a last resort, Bhutto agreed to introduce ‘Islamic system’ in the country and announced ban on gambling, wine, floorshows and the like.
There was to be no more racecourse or nightclub culture in the country. He declared Friday ___ the Muslim equivalent of Sabbath ___ as the weekly holiday.
Bhutto’s announcement to introduce ‘Islamic’ measures was taken as his weakness and a last ditch effort to save himself. Ultimately, as a result of the negotiations that had been in progress, the PNA and the PPP came to terms on holding of fresh elections in October 1977.
The agreement to this effect was to be signed at noon on 5 July; but in the early hours of that date the Chief of Army Staff, General Mohammad Zia-ul Haq, imposed martial law on the country.
In his very first address to the nation on 5 July 1977, General Zia stated:
“I must say that the spirit of Islam demonstrated during the recent movement was commendable. It proved that Pakistan, which was created in the name of Islam, will continue to survive only if it sticks to Islam. I consider the introduction of Islamic system as an essential prerequisite for the country.” [3]
General Zia had no qualms in exploiting the fair name of Islam for his political ends, i.e., survival at all cost; and JI had no scruples in supporting the most ruthless military ruler of Pakistan in his design to self-perpetuate himself.
In JI’s view, he was a messiah or Saladin destined to redeem the country that had gone astray after independence. With mosque and military as his constituencies, General Zia played havoc with the state institutions and the civil society during his eleven-year stint.
Commenting on General Zia’s rule, The Encyclopedia of Pakistan observes:
“In attempting to restructure . . . state and society into a theocracy, the government undertook two kinds of initiatives:
First, measures designed to (be) subordinate to executive authority, institutions of state and civil society such as the judiciary and the press, which if allowed to function independently could check governmental power.
“The second set of measures towards a theocratic state sought to inculcate obscurantist views and induced a narrowing of the human mind. It involved a suspension of the sensibility of love and reason underlying the religious tradition signified in Pakistan’s folk culture.” [4]
Retracting from his solemn pledge to hold elections in October 1977, shrewd, cunning and deceitful, General Zia initiated a process of so-called accountability of politicians and sought legitimacy in his ‘Islamization’ program, which was more cosmetic than substantial.
In February 1979, General Zia fixed a fresh date for holding of general elections and promulgated the so-called Hudood Ordinance 1979 (a unfair, unjust, un Islamic and intrinsically a draconian law) that dealt with the offences of drinking, adultery, theft and false allegations.
After a trial that lacked transparency and procedural propriety, Bhutto was sent to gallows in April 1979 on the false charge of ordering the murder of a political opponent.
Once the purpose of eliminating Bhutto was achieved, the general elections scheduled for November 1979 were postponed indefinitely.
Simultaneously, General Zia unleashed a reign of terror against his detractors and publicly flogged the PPP workers, students, journalists and lawyers who opposed his draconian measures.
In 1979, General Zia also promulgated Zakat and Ushr Ordinance that authorized the government to deduct what may be referred to as Islamic wealth tax at the rate of 2½ % from bank deposits that fall under the category of savings. The amount so deducted was to be distributed amongst the needy through some 32,000 zakat committees.
Those who became members of these committees developed a vested interest in prolongation of Zia’s rule.
In line with his ‘Islamization’ program, General Zia constituted in 1980 a Shariat Bench in each of the High Courts with the power to declare as repugnant to Islam any existing law, excluding fiscal laws.
Subsequently, in the same year, a Federal Shariat Court (FSC) was established to replace provincial Shariat Benches probably to simplify the structure of the judiciary and avoid pronouncement of conflicting judgments on matters related to shariah.
The FSC also had appellate jurisdiction in cases decided at lower levels under the shariah laws. The final judicial authority in the shariah matters was to be the Shariat Bench of the Supreme Court.
This brought about great elevation in the position of the ulema and they reached the corridors of power.
Husain Haqqani, who had once worked with Zia, observes:
“To serve alongside Western-educated jurists, Zia nominated representatives of the Islamic parties as judges of the Federal Sharia Court, the first time traditionally educated ulema had held that position since the introduction of English common law under British rule.” [5]
Under the instructions of General Zia, the performing arts were discouraged and strict censor was imposed on cinema and TV programs. The women artists and anchors on TV were to cover their head with dupatta (Hijab) and wear dresses that were not sexually attractive.
The themes of drama were changed to depict conservative values. The number of programs presenting Hamd (praise of Allah), Naat (praise of the Holy Prophet P.B.U.H.), Tilawat (recitation of the Holy Quran) and Tafseer (explanation and exegesis) were, qualitatively and quantitatively increased.
The radio and TV started airing the Azan (call for prayers) regularly. Advertisements in newspapers and on hoardings were not to carry photographs of women that may be considered obscene. Women were banned from participating in sports before the male crowd.
The Zia Administration issued directives to its various departments to arrange for observance of prayers and take break for that purpose.
Special sites were spared for observance of congregational prayers in government and semi-government offices and public places, including airports, railway stations, parks, markets, hospitals, educational institutions etc.
The sanctity of the month of Ramdhan (Holy month of Fasting) was strictly observed. The cafes and restaurants remained closed during the daytime. Even hawkers were not allowed to sell eatables during fasting hours.
For this purpose, Ehtaram-i-Ramazan Ordinance was promulgated in 1981, which prescribed punishment for violation of Ramazan’s sanctity.
With effect from 1 January 1981, the banks were required to introduce profit and loss sharing accounts that were claimed to be interest-free.
Subsequently, Banking and Financial Services (Amendment of Laws) Ordinance, 1984, was promulgated that introduced various concepts of so-called Islamic banking, including mark-up, hire-purchase, rent-sharing, licensing, leasing, musharika, modaraba etc.
In the field of education, the Quranic verses were used to describe natural laws and phenomena in textbooks of physical sciences.
The subject of Pakistan Studies became a vehicle for creating hatred towards the Hindu community and the students were indoctrinated in so-called ‘ideology of Pakistan’, for which truth was compromised and history murdered. [6]
The textbooks of Islamiat became a source of controversy between various sects of Islam. The isnads (degrees) conferred by madrassahs were made equivalent to university degrees, on the basis of which appointments were made in educational institutions.
There was talk of opening of separate girls’ universities. Urdu was made medium of instruction in government schools that effectively closed the minds of students by placing constraints on their access to knowledge.
General Zia’s ‘Islamic’ measures appear to be hypocritical. He never attempted to introduce the substance of Islam i.e., social and economic justice. Instead, the feudal lords and industrialists were given free hand to exploit the people. Unlike Bhutto’s time, the gap between the haves and have-nots increased rapidly under Zia.
As expected, General Zia’s program of ‘Islamization’ became controversial and imparted irreparable damage to the social fabric.
In Islam, there are various versions of shariah known as fiqahs since more than a thousand years. There are also several sects or maslaks (schools) that differ on beliefs of secondary nature but quarrel as if these differences are related to the fundamentals of Islam.
Often the ulema hailing from these various maslaks do not hesitate from issuing the fatwa (religious decree) of takfir (infidelity) against the rivals.
During the freedom struggle, Jinnah had taken due precaution not to get involved in sectarian issues. [7]
Zia’s legislative measures purportedly conformed to Sunni-Hanafi school of Islam and were at once resented by the minority Shia community that adhered to fiqah-i-jafaria.
As early as April 1979, an All Pakistan Shia Convention was held at Bhakkar to discuss the implications of General Zia’s legislative measures for the Shia community. It was on this occasion that Tehreek-i-Nifaz-i-Fiqah-i-Jafferia (TNFJ) was founded under the leadership of Mufti Jaffer Hussein, which became the most representative of Shia organizations.
Encouraged by the Iranian revolution of 1979, Pakistan’s Shia community adopted a tough stand on the Zakat and Ushr Ordinance of 1979 and refused to allow the government to deduct any amount from the deposits of Shia account holders.
On the call of Wifaq-i-Ulema-i-Shia (Federation of religious Clergy of Shia) Pakistan and Imamia Students Organization, the Shias converged in Islamabad on 5 July 1980 and virtually seized the capital city until the government conceded their demand of exemption from zakat deduction.
Under the Islamabad Agreement signed on the occasion, the government also promised to prescribe separate courses of studies in Islamiat for the Shia students.
Imam Khomeini played an important role in resolving the issue and obtained assurance from General Zia that the Shia demands would be met. (8]
The Iranian Revolution had inspired Muslims throughout the world by successfully confronting the United States and presenting a practical example of Islamic polity. Its radicalism was a threat to anachronistic regimes of the neighboring countries where despots ruled without popular participation or consent.
Pro-American Saudi monarchy particularly felt threatened from the trend set by the Iranian Revolution and feared that its spillover effects might destabilize the region. The show of strength by the Shias in Pakistan disturbed the Saudi dynasty and soon the Saudi government decided to counter Shia influence in Pakistan by supporting Sunni jihadi organizations that had been emerging since 1979 in the backdrop of the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan.
In August 1983, Mufti Jaffer Hussein died and TNFJ faced split in its ranks. One faction of the party called a conference at Bhakkar in February 1984 and elected Allama Syed Arif Al Husseini as its President.
Allama Syed Arif Al Husseini was able to secure support of Imam Khomeni and was appointed the Imam’s representative in Pakistan. [9]
Since the Islamabad Agreement had not been fully implemented, the TNFJ under Al Husseini resorted to agitation in which several shias were killed in July 1985 and the situation became very tense. The politics of TNFJ was seen with misgivings by the Sunni ulema.
In September 1985, Maulana Haq Nawaz Jhangwi, Maulana Ziaur Rehman Farooqi, Maulana Eesarul Haq Qasmi and Maulana Azam Tariq, all known for their anti-Shia views, founded Anjuman-i-Sipah-i-Sahaba, which was subsequently renamed as Sipah-i-Sahaba Pakistan (SSP).
Apart from sectarian differences, the emergence of the SSP represented class conflicts. An analyst has observed, “A feudal system has been operative in jhang (a District of Southern Punjab) for a very long time and most feudal landlords in this area belong to the Shia sect.
Opposed to this the majority of investors, industrialists and businessmen of the area are Sunnis. Divergence of interests led to confrontations in Jhang and Chiniot.” He has further claimed:
“Independent sources and police records confirm that Anjuman-i- Sipah-i- Sahaba was created by a group of eighteen businessmen from Jhang and discussions were held with Maulana Jhangvi to set down the outlines and goals of the organization.
The businessmen wanted to give a religious outlook to the organization so that the sympathies of the majority Sunni public could be gained against the Shia feudals.” [10]
Another theory is that the SSP was founded at the behest of General Zia who wanted to wean away popular support from the PPP in Punjab and simultaneously intended to counter the growing influence of Iran.
The SSP accused the TNFJ and other shia organizations of receiving financial assistance from Iran with a view to convert Pakistan into a Shia state. It alleged that the Shia ulema insulted the companions of the Holy Prophet (PBUH) in their sermons and publications, which could not be tolerated.
The SSP claimed that it wanted to institute Khilafat in Pakistan and demanded that the country should be declared a Sunni state.
Apparently the SSP received Saudi funds and enjoyed backing of Pakistani agencies, or the elements within, those were averse to the growing influence of Iran in the country.
Within a short period, the SSP managed to establish a large number of madrassahs in the length and breadth of Pakistan that indoctrinated their pupils against the shias, claiming that the shias were non-Muslims and should be suppressed or even killed for showing disrespect to prominent sahaba (Companions of the Prophet Mohammed (PBUH), in particular the first three Khulfa-i-Rashideen.
To counter the SSP, the shias founded their own militant organization Sipah-i-Mohammad in 1993. The leaders of the SSP went a step further and created several terrorist outfits, including Lashkar-i-Jhangvi, Jhangvi Tigers, Al-Haq Tigers, Al-Farooq, Al-Badar etc.
Although the conflicts between the TNFJ (or TNJ, as it was renamed), and the SSP and their respective offshoots failed to instigate Shia-Sunni riots at popular level except in Jhang, Chiniot and some nearby places, they resorted to target killings of prominent persons, including professionals, and planned attacks on mosques and Imam bargahs that have led to innumerable casualties during last the two decades.
Violence begets violence and it is a pity to note that apart from the commoners, a large number of Shia and Sunni ulema lost their lives in sectarian killings.
The legacy of General Zia continued to haunt even after the Providence removed him from the scene in August 1988.
The period 1988-1999 witnessed some of the worst spate of sectarian killings. After 9/11, the Musharraf government outlawed the TNJ, the SSP and various terrorist-sectarian organizations operating under them.
Even these measures have failed to eliminate the phenomenon. There is no escape saying that the sectarian violence in Pakistan began largely due to the short-sightedness of General Zia’s policy of so-called ‘Islamization’ of laws without first evolving a national consensus. Subsequently, the Shia-Sunni conflict was further flared up and sustained by the turf war between Islamic Republic of Iran and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the two archrivals vying for influence in the region.
General Zia’s policy also strained relations between the various maslaks of the Sunni sect. He was particularly close to the Tableeghi Jamaat and attended its annual congregations.
At popular level, the Dawat-i-Islami, representing the Barailvi maslak, and the Tableeghi Jamaat are viewed as staunch rivals.
Pakistan government’s support to Deobandi, Wahabi and Ahle Hadith outfits in the wake of the Afghan jihad enabled the followers of these maslaks to increase their say in the Ministry of Religious Affairs and they were also embolden to take over many mosques belonging to Barailvi maslak.
This led to the creation of the militant Sunni Tehrik in 1990 to safeguard Baraivi interests.
Apart from sectarian conflicts, another manifestation of religious extremism in Pakistan is in the form of militancy or jihadi culture. Its origin is well known and may be briefly summed up.
On 17 July 1973, Sardar Muhammad Daoud toppled the government of King Zahir Shah of Afghanistan and declared the country a Republic. He raised the issue of the Durand Line ____ the boundary between Pakistan and Afghanistan ___ and supported the cause of Pakhtunistan, a concept of self-governing or independent homeland for Pakhtuns, comprising Pakistan’s North-Western Frontier Province and northern parts of Balochistan.
At that time a nationalist insurgency was going on in Balochistan and Daoud’s policy posed a threat to Pakistan’s security. Prime Minister Bhutto decided to counter Daoud’s move by supporting the militias of Jamiat-i-Islami led by Burhanuddin Rabbani and of Hizb-i-Islami led by Gulbadin Hekmatyar.
These organizations had links with Pakistan’s Jamaat-i-Islami and the Middle East’s Muslim Brotherhood. The Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) was made responsible for the conduct of the covert operation designed to strengthen the Islamists in Afghanistan. [11]
Concerned with this unpleasant development in the region, the Shah of Iran used his good offices and persuaded Bhutto and Daoud to commence dialogue.
While negotiations were in progress, General Zia seized power in July 1977 due to which the dialogue was disrupted. After a short break, the negotiations began between General Zia and Daoud and it was expected that the differences between Pakistan and Afghanistan over the Durand Line and the Pakhtunistan issue would be amicably resolved [12].
However, before that happen Daoud was killed on 27 April 1978 in a coup staged by the Afghan Communists under Nur Muhammad Tarahki.
The establishment of a Communist regime in Afghanistan changed its traditional character of a buffer state between Russia / the Soviet Union and the South Asian Subcontinent. In December 1978, Afghanistan and the Soviet Union signed a Treaty of Friendship and Cooperation, which contained provisions concerning defense and security.
India had already concluded a similar treaty with the Soviet Union in 1971. Iran was also in turmoil where the fall of the Shah looked imminent. In this backdrop, General Zia sought to revive Pakistan’s military ties with the United States, which were in the doldrums because of Pakistan’s clandestine nuclear program.
Simultaneously, Pakistan decided to enhance its assistance to the Islamists who led the resistance against the Communist rule.
Pleading Pakistan’s case forcefully, General Zia stated in an interview to Klaus Natrop of Frank-furter Allgemeine Zaituny:
“The Soviet Union signed a Friendship Treaty with India in 1971 and later Pakistan was dismembered and Bangladesh was created. The Soviet Union went into a Treaty of Friendship with Ethiopia and Somalia was threatened . . . . The Soviet Union went into a Treaty of Friendship with Vietnam and Kampuchia is gone. The Soviet Union has now entered into a Treaty with Afghanistan. I do not say Pakistan will go but it certainly creates a threat to Pakistan.”
General Zia contended that the guerilla movement in Afghanistan “should get support it needs from China, from America, from Western Europe. Of course, it has to pass through Pakistan but Pakistan at the moment is not in a position to give them the support they need, because Pakistan will only be burning its own fingers that way.” [13]
As the resistance against the Communist regime in Afghanistan became strong with Pakistan’s covert support to the Islamists and the country plunged into a civil war.
Thousands of Afghans began crossing the Durand Line to take refuge in Pakistan. On 16 September 1979, Hafizullah Amin, the Afghan Prime Minister, captured power in a coup that led to the assassination of Tarahki. He too failed to control the situation in face of stiff resistance.
Not satisfied with Amin, on 27 December 1979, the Soviet Union moved its troops into Afghanistan and installed Babruk Karmal at the head of the government at Kabul.
Confronted with grave threat to Pakistan’s security, General Zia made loud appeals for American assistance to strengthen Pakistan’s defense and to force the roll back of Soviet occupation of Afghanistan.
With half-hearted commitment, U.S. President Carter offered an aid of $400 million to Pakistan, which General Zia rejected as a ‘peanut’. In the American Presidential elections of 1980, the Republican candidate Ronald Reagan was successful.
With Reagan as the US President, a new era of cooperation between Pakistan and the United States dawned and the United States offered Pakistan a package of $ 3.2 billion over next six years.
Together General Zia and Reagan decided to use Islam as a weapon against the Soviet occupational forces in Afghanistan and thus began the biggest covert operation in the history of CIA.
For the success of joint CIA-ISI venture, it was necessary to promote religious extremism or jihadi culture in Afghanistan and Pakistan, and this they did.
With the American financial and military assistance, Pakistan became a conduit of arms supplies to Afghan counter revolutionaries who were now called mujahideen.
Western Europe, Japan, China, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates also provided funds to carry on guerrilla war against the Soviet occupational forces in Afghanistan.
Initially these mujahideen were recruited from Afghans and Pakistani Pashtuns. As the scope of jihad widened, the Arabs, the Chechens, the Uzbeks and others joined the resistance.
Pakistan government encouraged the Deobandi ulema belonging to JUI to establish madrassah network in the Afghan refugee camps and Pashtun areas of Pakistan.
JI recruited warriors from the NWFP and cities of Punjab and Sindh where its cadres were strong.
By mid 1980s, several jihadi outfits were operating in Afghanistan and they enjoyed sanctuaries in Pakistan. Abdullah Azzam, the mentor of Osama Bin Laden set up his office in Peshawar to assist in jihad and was at a later stage visited by Bin Laden himself.
The madrassah and the mosques inspired the youth to participate in jihad.
Even the children were mentally prepared for the great cause. Highlighting the tactics used by the United States to indoctrinate the Afghan children for future role, Kathy Gannon states:
“The United States also pumped out inspirational literature of its own for the Afghan refugee camps, where U.S.-printed school books taught the alphabet by using such examples as: J is for Jihad, and K is for Kalashnikov, and I is for infidel. Mathematical problems would be something like: ‘If you had fifty Communist soldiers and you killed ten, how many would you still have?’ ” [14]
After the introduction of U.S stringer missiles on the part of the mujahideen, the Soviet Union fully realized that it could neither win the war nor bear the cost of the military adventure.
In the end, the proximity talks that had been taking place between Pakistan and the Communist regime of Afghanistan came to fruition in the form of the Geneva Accords under which the Soviet Union agreed to withdraw its troops from Afghanistan by February 1989.
Once the Vietnam War was avenged and ‘the Evil Empire’ defeated, the United States lost its interest in Afghanistan. It unceremoniously ditched the jihadis and showed cold shoulder to Pakistan.Although General Zia was no more at the helm of affairs when the Soviet withdrawal was completed, but his Legacy that was well entrenched had, a vision of having strategic depth for Pakistan by controlling Kabul through some proxy and to have access to Central Asia. They were also driven for strategic depth owing insecurities and living under constant threat from its neighbor with whom it had full scale wars and its eastern flank.
They were also encouraged by success in Afghanistan to expand the jihadi network to Indian Occupied Kashmir.
In Afghanistan, the Communist government of Najibullah survived till April 1992. After the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, its fall seemed only a matter of time.
Despite Pakistan’s best effort, peace remained elusive in Afghanistan, where different jihadi organizations fought among themselves.
Pakistan failed to see Hikmatyar ___ its man ___ at the head of government in Kabul. In the absence of strong central authority, the writ of the Afghan government remained confined to Kabul and virtually innumerable warlords controlled Afghanistan’s territory.
The situation deteriorated to a point where different warlords imposed taxes on movement of goods and people through their respective domains. The Taliban were born in 1994 as a reaction to this highhandedness of the warlords. [15]
Although the emergence of the Taliban was accidental, they proved their mettle in a short span. Fortunately for Pakistan, many of them had received religious education in Deobandi madrassahs run by the JUI.
The ISI had first-hand experience of the Taliban in October 1994, when it helped recover a Pakistani trade convoy that was destined to Central Asia. In the Taliban, the ISI could see the potential of fulfilling Pakistan’s dream of strategic depth and access to Central Asia.
With the support of the ISI, the Taliban were able to take over nearly 90% of Afghanistan’s territory, including Kabul, by 1996.
In Indian occupied Kashmir, the ISI successfully orchestrated a jihadi campaign based in Azad Kashmir and Pakistani territory. By the late 1990s, the ISI-sponsored low intensity war in Indian occupied Kashmir engaged nearly seven hundred thousand Indian law enforcement personnel and regular troops.
The drain on Indian economy from this low intensity war in Kashmir was enormous and Pakistan hoped to bring India to a negotiated settlement of the Kashmir dispute or bleed it indefinitely.
Pakistan’s Afghanistan and Kashmir policies made it imperative that the jihadi culture remained strong in the country.
The mosques and madrassahs sermonized on the importance of jihad and the JI and JUI, with their close nexus with the Pakistan armed forces, continued to recruit young people for the jihad in Kashmir. To train the recruits, necessary facilities were set up in Azad Kashmir, the tribal belt and the NWFP.
Although various individuals and institutions made huge contributions, one could routinely see the stalls of jihadi out fits distributing jihadi leaflets and collecting donations after Friday prayers.
Several daily, weekly and monthly publications were brought out with ISI sponsorship to propagate jihad. A large number of foreigners who had stayed in Pakistani tribal belt after the Soviet withdrawal from Afghanistan also joined the mujahideen in Kashmir.
The 9/11 changed the entire scenario. After the Taliban refused to handover Osama bin Laden, the prime suspect of attack on the World Trade Center, Pakistan had to ditch its erstwhile ally and join the so-called American war on terror.
Since then Pakistan government has handed over to the United States scores of Taliban and Al Qaeda supporters, including several prominent Al-Qaeda figures.
Pakistan has also periodically launched very costly military operations in its tribal belt to eliminate militants and check cross-border incursions into Afghanistan from the Taliban and Al-Qaeda elements.
However, Pakistan cannot afford to allow a pro-India government in Kabul or to go on suppressing its tribal people for an alien cause.
In view of its strategic interests in Afghanistan and internal, existential societal, religious and political ground realities, Pakistan can ill afford burning its boats and has, of necessity to have a discreet nexus with the Taliban and politico-religious parties, JUI and JI.
Simultaneously, the jihadi infrastructure for Kashmir needs to be kept in tact to be reactivated if India drags its feet on the Kashmir issue too long.
The question to ponder over is not only how the jihadi outfits manage to recruit people or how do they operate. The question also is why the Muslims opt for jihad? Why so many young Muslims offer to become suicide bombers?
Is it not surprising that those who participated in attack on the World Trade Center were not madrassah students?
The answer is to be found in the arrogant and rogue behavior of the United States and Israel. It is to be found in the blood of innocent Palestinian Muslims that is being shed daily in Gaza and the West Bank and now the massacre of innocent Lebanese, mostly defense less infants, children elderly people, women in the name of taking on Hizbullah.
It is to be found in the American protection to dictatorial regimes that rule the Muslim countries. It is to be found in the ruthless suppression of the Kashmiri, Chechen, Uighar and Moro Muslims.
Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, the United States has lost all sense of propriety in dealing with the Muslim world. It has stationed its forces in Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and the Gulf Emirates with the ‘permission’ of unrepresentative regimes.
It has occupied Iraq and Afghanistan and routinely, on daily basis, resort to indiscriminate killing of the innocent people of these countries.
It is threatening Syria and Iran without any justification. Guantanamo Bay, Abu Ghraib and Batgram prisons have become symbols of its savagery and barbarity. These acts cannot go unanswered.
What the West calls ‘terrorism’, Islamists call it jihad. And the jihad would continue if the United States and Israel do not vacate aggression from the Muslim land.
Presently, Pakistani society is a divided entity. There are those who find great attraction in the pop music, cable TV and consumerism, and yearn for a life of peace, comfort and enjoyment.
They would like Pakistan to be another Egypt or Turkey. For them religion is confined to a few rituals and that’s all.
At the other end are those who can never ignore the fact that the West is bent upon destroying Muslim ethos. Some of them revert to pacifist tradition of Islam. They recoil and withdraw, and attend the congregations of Dawat-i-Islami and Tableeghi Jamaat in the hope that better days would come.
For them, their maslak and fiqah is everything. But there are elements that consider jihad as ‘farz-i-ain’ and suicide bombing a legitimate war tactic.
They would continue to respond to the call of jihad. And yes, there are still others whose hatred for the United States and Israel accepts no bounds, but they think that without first equipping the Muslim World with science and technology and the art of modern ware-fare, the jihad in the form of qital is premature. [16]
While concluding it may be noted that there is no denying the fact that the ground realities those are confronting Pakistan and the eventual compulsions, in the after math of 911, those exacted the diametric changes in Pakistan’s policies were in keeping with the diktats of the time and our objectives.
Hence the people at the Helm of affairs did the best that they could.
Having said that, it may be pointed out that there is much that needs to be done in terms of changing the internal dynamics of society in Pakistan.
It could be achieved by formulating and executing long and short term policies those could result in catering to the conventional and non-conventional polar extremities in the society and those could build bridges and arrive at a new social contract that articulates our societal behavior in harmony with the changing internal, regional and global environment in league with Pakistan’s Ideological aspirations of finding and place in the comity of nations as a Muslim, democratic and economic power.
The civil society in Pakistan needs to rise to the occasion and contribute towards bridging the polarity gap by “throwing up moderate enlightenment from within and not imported enlightened moderation.
About the author: Amicus is the pseudonym of Mohammed Yousuf advocate, a Lawyer based in Karachi. He has written extensively on current affairs, with reference to South and Central Asia. He can be reached on
Notes and References
" O ALLAH,let your blessings come upon Muhammad PBUH and the family of Muhammad PBUH, as you have blessed Ibrahim AS and his family.
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(Saviour of Islam During Second Millennium)

Shaikh Ahmed of Sirhind (1564-1624)

Born: 26-06-1564 Died: 15-12-1624

1. Background:

1.1. Akbar’s Din e Ilahi (reconciliation of religions: Islam and Hinduism + Christianity) adulterated Muslim polity, society and religion

1.2. Un-Islamic practices and beliefs introduced by Akbar & continued during Jahangir’s reign

2. Evils of Muslim Society:

2.1. Social: adulteration with socio-religious practices of Hinduism
2.2. Political: Sovereignty concept (zill-e-Ilahi) prostration
2.3. Spiritual / Ideological: Wahdat-ul-Wajud (Creator – creatures one)

3. Revival Movement:

3.1. He did not enter into direct political conflict with rulers but instead wrote letters to prominent personalities in Akbar’s (subsequently Jahangir’s) Court viz. Abdur Rehman Khan-e-Khanan, Khan-e-Azam Mirza Abdul Aziz, Mufti Sadr-e-Jahan – reminding them their religious duty
3.2. Sent disciples to different corners of India for preaching – basic concepts of Islam, shariah sunnah – to expose Akbar’s din-e-ilahi

3.3. In the court of Jahangir – raised voice against the practice of prostration – imprisoned in Gawaliar (1619-20) but later released and made religious advisor of Jahangir

3.4. In prison he converted many inmates to Islam and brought reformation among the Muslim prisoners

3.5. He preached true spirit of Islam among the troops of Mughal army; raised their moral and prepared them to perform their duties towards Islam and the State;

3.6. Ideological war –

3.6.1. Wahdat-ul-Wajud* (Unity of Wajud (Being): Creator – creatures one) – propounded by Ibn-al Arabi (1165-1240 AD - an Arab Muslim sufi mystic and philosopher); and

3.6.2. Wahdat-ul-Shahud* (Unity of Shahud (experience / feelings): Creator – creatures are one by experience / feeling but separate Beings) – propounded by Shaikh Alaud Daula Simnani (1261-1336 AD – an Irani opponent of Ibn-al Arabi) – but further propagated by Shaikh Ahmed in Indo-Pak.
*[For details visit: ]Error

3.7. Mujaddid’s thought did not find much popularity in the sub-continent as:

3.7.1. Chishti traditions of Wahdat-ul-Wajud were too strong;
3.7.2. His theory of Wahdat-ul-Shahud was orthodox religious approach which gave set back to Sufis to create harmony between Hindus and Muslims.

4. Influence on the history of Muslim India:

4.1. First person who propounded the idea of Muslim nationalism in India

4.2. Advocate of Muslim separatism – distinctive image

4.3. Akbar’s heterodoxy –> Aurangzeb’s orthodoxy rather than laissez faire policy of Babur / Humanyun – gradual transformation -

4.4. Akbar was a liberal – Aurangzeb was a fundamentalist (imposed jizyah on non-Muslims)

4.5. The movement was taken forward by Shah Waliullah and Syed Ahmed Shaheed – ultimately head way to destination of Pakistan movement.

5. Conclusion

5.1. The movement restored Shariah;
5.2. Islam became a symbol of Muslim unity;
5.3. His movement influenced future movements and shaped the destiny of the Muslims of India;

B. SHAH WALIULLAH (1703-1762) /
[Qutbuddin Ahmed] Born: 21-02-1703

1. Background

1.1. Departure of Aurangzeb (1707) – adverse impacts on Mughal Empire + Muslims of India (their hegemony / dominance over Hindus / non-Muslims started waning)

1.2. Political ascendancy of Muslims under Aurangzeb vanished after him – impacted economic interests of Muslims

1.3. Muslim society was assimilating (absorbing) Hindu ideas / traditions / practices

1.4. Ignorance of the basic principles of Islam & conflicts over minute / insignificant details

1.5. Internal deterioration – sectarian differences (shias & sunnis)

2. Family / Spiritual Background

2.1. Born in 1703 to Shah Abdur Rahim – a theologian (religious / spiritual leader) and mystic (sufi) at Phulat (UP) – who endeavoured to reconcile the conflicting philosophies of theology and mysticism.

2.2. Successor of Mujaddid Alf Sani in preservation of religious belief and Muslim identity

3. Reformist Movement:

First of its kind - aimed at social, political, religious and economic reformation of the degenerated Muslim community in India.

3.1. Religious:

3.1.1. Sectarian differences – nobles grouped into ‘Turani’ and ‘Irani’ - euphemisms for Sunni and Shia – soldiers and common men were also affected.

3.1.2. His book ‘Izalat-ul-khifa an khilafat-il-khulafa’ ( ) removed misunderstandings between shias and sunnis.

3.1.3. Sunnis were divided on minute details of the interpretation of Quran and Sunnah. Minor issues created divisions in the society.

3.1.4. He adopted a balanced approach, translated Quran in Persian to make it understandable and wrote ‘al-fauz-u’l kabir fi usul-it-tafsir’ ( ) highlighted the broad principles for interpretation of Quran.

3.1.5. In order to create balance among four schools of (Sunnis) thought he wrote ‘al-insaf fi bayan sahib al ikhtilaf’ ( ).

3.1.6. Ijtihad (progressive interpretation of Islamic law) was vigorously adopted – in a society which had closed doors for further interpretation

3.1.7. He tried to reconcile the divergent views of Ibn-ul Arabi and Mujaddid Alf Sani on the concepts of Wahdat-ul-Wajud (Creator – creatures one) and Wahdat-ul-Shahud (Creator – creatures are separate).

3.2. Social:

3.2.1. Deep crisis of public morality and character in Muslim society – presented Islam in a rational manner and urged Muslim masses to mould their lives accordingly.

3.3. Economic:

3.3.1. He pointed out that social and economic factors had created fissures in the society – groups (nobility / clergy) responsible for well being of the general public had become parasites on public exchequer;

3.3.2. He raised voice against inequitable distribution of wealth in the society – working / poorer classes were being exploited and were unable to meet basic needs, while nobles, ulemas and soldiers were receiving money from public exchequer without performing their duties effectively.

3.3.3. He appealed upper classes to realize their responsibilities. Besides, emphasized upon the working classes to cultivate habits of hard work, honesty and efficiency.

3.3.4. He laid utmost emphasis on justice and equilibrium without which society / economy could not endure / sustain.

3.4. Political:

3.4.1. Marhattas and Jats had made the life of Muslims miserable in India.

3.4.2. He organized Muslims for Jihad against Marhattas and Sikhs.

3.4.3. Invited Ahmed Shah Abdali of Afghanistan and motivated Najib uddawlah Chief Rohillah (North West of India) to help him to save the Muslim community from Marhatta subjugation (Abdali attacked nine times) – triumph of Panipat (1761) was culmination of his political efforts.

3.5. Implications / Impact:

3.5.1. Religious reformation;
3.5.2. Social regeneration
3.5.3. Political ascendancy

4. Conclusion:

4.1. None before him attempted to integrate whole Islamic structure

4.2. It was very influence of Shah Waliullah’s movement that the movements of Syed Ahmed Shaheed and Sir Syed Ahmed Khan flourished and further consolidated Muslims in India.

C. DARUL-ULUM DEOBAND (Founded on 14-04-1866)

1. Introduction

1.1. Brain-child of Haji Mohammad Abid and toil of Maulana Mohammad Qasim Nanautvi (Founder Principal)

1.2. Deoband movement was launched to counter Aligarh Movement which reconciled with British rulers and Western civilization.

1.3. It was struggle for welfare and renaissance of Muslims through orthodox religious teaching.

1.4. Shah Waliullah (1703-1762) was mentor (guru) of the movement – Shah Abdul Aziz and Syed Ahmed Shaheed were other pioneers (in philosophy).

2. Credo of Deoband Movement:

2.1. In initial stages, it concentrated on diversity of thought among various sects and on purifying the traditions of Islam from alien influences / unhealthy practices.

2.2. Maulana Qasim had come in conflict with the British during War of 1857 – he objected Western thoughts. The institution / movement was committed to religious nationalism in India.

2.3. The pioneers were orthodox ulema, whose credo was the defence of religion as the only panacea to save the distinct identity of Indian Muslims.

2.4. The movement adopted a moderate posture and was neither extremist nor ultra orthodox. Spread religious education commendably

3. Other Personalities:

3.1. Maulana Shabbir Ahmed Usmani extended his services without remuneration

3.2. Shaikh ul Hind Maulana Mahmud-ul-Hassan was very dynamic (he was instrumental in bringing Aligarh and Deoband closer by minimizing differences)

3.3. Haji Imadullah and Maulana Mahmood Hassan were of high caliber but lacked public appeal / popularity (they were only teachers – did not join the movement)

4. Influence / Impact of Deoband:

4.1. Education:

4.1.1. Attracted large number of students from various parts of India and abroad – in 1931, enrolment was 900 from UP, NWFP, Bengal and Bukhara

4.1.2. Educational standard was maintained that soon it was rated as the most prestigious seat of Islamic learning after Al-Azhar University, Cairo.
4.2. Religious:

4.2.1. The plan was to train enough ulema to be able to spread Islamic philosophy – Th movement produced: Maulana Ashraf Thanvi, Maulana Ehtisham ul Haq Thanvi Maulana Ubedullah Sindhi

4.2.2. Quran, Hadith, Arabic, Islamic jurisprudence, philosophy and Islamic history were main disciplines – fatwas of Deoband Ulemas were considered authentic in the sub-continent.

4.3. Administrative

4.3.1. The institution provided administrative guidance to other educational institutions in syllabus, conduct of examination and teaching techniques – it had acquired the status of an informal university – this further facilitated spread of Islamic education in India.

4.4. Political

4.4.1. Leaders of the movement aimed at closer relationship with Sultan of Turkey.

4.4.2. Maulana Ubedullah Sindhi and Maulana Mahmood Hassan supported Turks and Afghans against British in WW-1.

4.4.3. Madni Group under Maulana Hussain Ahmed Madni aligned with Congress

4.4.4. But another group under Maulana Ashraf Thanvi and Maulana Shabbir Ahmed Usmani counteracted the influence of Congress on Deoband – helped Quaid-e-Azam in Pakistan movement – they were more popular among masses.

4.5. Social

4.5.1. Like Aligarh, successfully awakened social consciousness of Muslims through religious education.

5. Deoband versus Aligarh

5.1. Deoband Ulema were very effective in combating anti Islamic missionaries but could not provide any solid leadership (unlike their mentor – Shah Waliullah)

5.2. On the other hand Sir Syed Ahmed Khan revitalized and re-evaluated the ideas of Islam in the light of the progressive philosophy of Shah Waliullah and became successful in resolving intellectual crises created by traditional thinking and fundamentalism. He provided effective and solid leadership to the community.

5.3. Aligarh movement, unlike Deoband, was very popular and instrumental among the Muslim masses

5.4. The two movements had philosophical cleavages – widened gulf between them from the beginning. The authorities of the two institutions remained engaged in controversy.

5.5. While Sir Syed forbad Muslims to join Congress, a group of Deoband ulema, led by Maulana Madni joined Congress.
5.6. Sir Syed was reconciliatory while Deoband Ulemas were deadly against Britih – they even established their own government in their areas of influence for some time. Political tension existed between the two until 1947.

6. Conclusion

6.1. Deoband had a limited sphere of influence due to its narrow approach and selected adoption of the philosophy of its mentor.

6.2. The most progressive tool (ijtihad) of Shah Waliullah was adopted by Sir Syed who became popular among the rulers and the Muslim masses.

6.3. Deoband Ulema remained wavered and grouped themselves with conflicting credos (aligning with Ottomans against British in WW-1 on the one hand and joining Hindu dominated pro-British Congress on the other) – Thus they lost appeal of masses.


1. Introduction:

1.1. Brain child of Sir Syed Ahmed Khan (1817-1898) and toil of his followers – Hali, Shibli, Nazeer Ahmed (Syed Amir Ali, author of ‘Spirit of Islam’ – which was new interpretation of Islam, though not a member, but contributed largely to the goals of Aligarh Movement)

1.2. Characteristics of Muslim community soon after 1857 War – education was bleak (illiteracy rampant), religion an obsession (traditional thinking, religious fanaticism) and politics was an enigma (puzzle / mystery).

1.3. Movements of Shah Waliullah and Syed Ahmed Shaheed reduced animosities (hostilities) from among the Muslim community but created over obsession towards religious thinking. This fanaticism was a barrier in the renaissance and regeneration of the community after War of Independence – British hegemony and Hindu domination.

1.4. A cultural movement aimed at regeneration of liberal values – literature, social life and religion.

1.5. Education was the foundation on which Sir Syed build a super structure of his religious, social and political ideas for Muslims

2. Highlights of the Movement:

2.1. The movement acted as social, political and psychological panacea for betterment of Muslims in India.

2.2. British loyalty and confidence was also the programme of the movement

2.3. The Educational Aspect:

2.3.1. Aim: groom and quip Muslims with Western education to become intellectually and politically sound to play role effectively in the development of India

2.3.2. Sir Syed visited England in (1869) to study English educational institutions

2.3.3. Established Mohammedan Anglo Oriental (MAO) College, Aligarh (1875) – later became Aligarh Muslim University - centre of cultural activities for Muslims

2.3.4. Mohammedan Educational Conference (1886) – spread message through conferences, seminars, public meetings, etc.

2.3.5. Translation Society at Ghazipur (1864) later became Aligarh Scientific Society – translated modern works from English to Persian and Urdu, published a journal ‘Aligarh Institute Gazette’ (1866) bridged gulf between British and Muslims.

2.4. Religious Role:

2.4.1. Sir Syed wrote many books on Islam to establish that it was a progressive religion – no conflict with Modern world, science and development

2.4.2. He gave a befitting reply in the form of detailed essays to William Moor’s blasphemous book – ‘Life of Mohammad’

2.4.3. Attempts were made to rationally interpret Islamic ideas and concepts

2.4.4. Emancipated the Muslims from centripetal tendencies of religion by recommending extensive use of Ijtihad.

2.5. Political Contribution:

2.5.1. Policy of the movement was to remain away from politics (Aligarh was apolitical!)

2.5.2. However, the movement safeguarded the political interests of Muslims of India by educating them to face better educated and more prosperous Hindus

2.5.3. To promote better understanding with the British, Sir Syed wrote a pamphlet – ‘The Causes of the Indian Revolt’

2.5.4. He highlighted services of the Muslims and defended them in ‘Loyal Mohammadans of India’.

2.5.5. The movement championed Muslim nationalism cause when Sir Syed advised Muslims not to join Congress – thereby provoked the to establish a separate political party [critical]

2.5.6. He was first to propose idea of ‘separate electorate’ for Muslims – did not believe in Westminster democracy (majority rule) in India – [critical]

2.5.7. Pleaded inclusion of Muslims in the Legislative Council to represent their community;

2.5.8. The movement was bastion (fortress) of Two Nation Theory – Sir Syed was the first to formally propagate the idea after being disgruntled with Hindu attitude and advocated separate and distinct identity of Muslims with different culture, religion, civilization, etc. He was the first to formally call Muslims ‘a nation’

2.6. Social Role:

2.6.1. Reawakened Muslims with social consciousness

2.6.2. ‘Tahzibul Ikhlaq’ ( ) magazine played positive role in improving morality / moral values.
3. The Impact of the Movement:

3.1. Immediate:

3.1.1. Transformed the Muslim community from pessimism of the post 1857 war days to optimism - gave a new hope to the Muslims

3.1.2. bridged the gulf between the British and Muslims (their loyalty no more challenged)

3.1.3. provided an opportunity to catch up with Hindus / other Indians

3.1.4. Produced graduates to fill up senior government assignments

3.2. Long Term / Far Reaching:

3.2.1. Infused new spirit in the dormant Muslim community raised it to a level of a separate and independent nation in India

3.2.2. Gave political wisdom and offered new horizons to the Muslims which ultimately paved way for establishment of All India Muslim League.

3.2.3. Under the influence of MAO Aligarh, Islamia College Peshawar and Islamia Collge Lahore became nucleus for Muslim educational and political activities

3.2.4. Aligarh Movement indeed spearheaded Pakistan Movement!

4. Conclusion:

4.1. Some argue that Sir Syed’s political philosophy of cooperation with British had serious limitations; while others contend that his acceptance of Western values could not build a nation with distinct identity and values; some critics even consider his religious concept narrow and un-philosophical

4.2. But at a critical juncture of the history of Indian Muslims his movement and philosophy provided opportunities and saved Muslims from the inertia, stagnation and even annihilation

“People say Sir Syed set up a college, nay, he made a nation” - Dr. Maulvi Abdul Haq

4.3. The movement provided new zeal and vigor to the Muslims of India

4.4. Pakistan would not have been possible without the Aligarh Movement



1.1. Nadwa was an outcome of prominent Muslims who wanted to adopt a middle path between Deoband (old and traditional patterns) and Aligarh (modern knowledge).

1.2. Established by leading Muslim Ulema, under the leadership of Shibli Nomani, Maulvi Abdul Ghafoor (Deputy Collector) and Syed Mohammad Ali of Kanpur in 1894, at Lucknow.

1.3. Syed Mohammad Ali was the founder and Administrator

1.4. Shibli Nomani, initially a teacher of Persian in Aligarh, left it and joined Nadwah. He believed that Aligarh was only producing youth for clerical jobs and had lost its purpose.


The objectives were to:

2.1. Reform maktabs, develop religious learning, improve morals and behaviour;
2.2. Resolve and settle difference of opinion among the ulema and observe restraint on expression of divergent views;
2.3. Devise ways and means for general welfare of the Muslims but keep them away from politics and affairs of the state;
2.4. Establish a magnificent academy of learning where technical education could be provided along with academic education;
2.5. Spread Islam through tableegh and to establish department of ufta (to give fatwas).


3.1. The modern educational system was reorganized and Shibli Nomani became the Principal of Nadwa in 1908. He introduced English and Islamic subjects of learning in the curriculum.

3.2. At Nadwa the preachers were trained to carry out these objectives and were sent to different parts of the sub-continent for the ‘missionary work’.

3.3. Al Nadwa, monthly magazine (1904) under the editorship of Maulana Shibli and Maulana Habib-ur-Rahman Sherwani, attempted to harmonize Islamic thought with modern science.


4.1. Allama Sulaiman Nadvi played an important role before and after the creation of Pakistan was a product of this institution.

4.2. Other prominent personalities included Maulvi Abdul Haque, Maulana Abdus Salam Nadvi and Maulvi Abu Zafar. They played very important role in imparting religious knowledge and creating political consciousness among the Muslims.


5.1. All the efforts of Nadwa did help ulema to retain their hold on the Muslims. However, the compromise they made hardly aided the new progressive trends in Islam; but their new approach certainly gave them a new lease of life.

5.2. Nadwa being a compromise between the two systems never gained the popularity and importance which Deoband had in religious circles and Aligarh acquired in modern education.

5.3. However, Dar ul Musaniffin (Academy of Authors) established by Nadwa played important role in the field of research and published a large number of books and valuable literature on Islam.


6.1. Deoband was anti-British and gave the idea of removing the British by supporting Hindus / Congress. A large section of Deoband Ulema opposed Pakistan and were in favour of united India. On the contrary, Nadwa believed in the unity of Muslims and was against the Congress. Nadwa students worked for the creation of Pakistan.

6.2. Deoband only appreciated religious teachings (Qoran, Hadith, Fiqh) while Nadwa encouraged English along with Islamic teachings.
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Default The role of sufis and ulema in spreading islam



a) Muslim nationalism in India would have never seen the reality of the day had there been no Sufis or Ulema behind its scene;

b) The view that ‘Islam was spread by the sword’ lacks the understanding of the history;

c) Islam indeed spread by means of its pragmatic ideals – humanitarianism, piety, justice, tolerance and peace – fostered by great Sufis and Ulema through their teachings and practical life;

d) They converted large number of Hindus to the fold of Islam – sword never played decisive role in this respect.


a) If ‘sword’ of Muslim Kings / Sultans had been the driving force then one would naturally expect largest proportion of Muslim population in Delhi, Agra, Luknow – seat of power;

b) This not true and the percentage of Muslims in these areas is very low as compared to other areas constituting Pakistan and Bangladesh;

c) Arnold, a European writer of Indian history, states: “There are instances on record where isolated families were converted under political pressure, but they were few. The vast majority converted not through any Governmental pressure but by slow and patient process of missionary work”.

d) Maclagen and Qanungo, two eminent non-Muslim scholars, studied spread of Islam in Pakistan and Bangladesh, and came to the conclusion that Sufi saints added to the numerical strength of Muslim population by encouraging conversions to Islam through peaceful and non-violent means in these areas;

e) Had Islam been spread by sword / force, 1000 years of Muslim rule would have been sufficient to bring the entire sub-continent under the sway of Islam – which is not the case;


a) The contribution of Ulema and Sufis was instrumental;

b) In cities, where upper class of Muslim society lived, Ulema were custodian of religion;

c) In far flung areas where masses lived, Sufis played major role not only to preserve the inner spirit of Islam among the Muslims but to win thousands of converts;

d) Sufism was ‘a great spiritual movement in Islam which sought mystic realization of Almighty Allah’. It traces origin to Qoran and Hadith.

e) Organization: organized themselves in ‘silsilahs’ (orders) and established ‘khanqahs’
f) Four ‘silsilahs’ are worth mentioning:

i) Chishtiyah –Khwaja Abu Ishaq Shami (940 AD)
ii) Qadiriyah – founder Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani (1077-1166 AD);
iii) Suhrwardiyah –Shaikh Najibuddin Abdul Qadir Suhrawardi (1169 AD);
iv) Naqshbandiyah – founder Khwaja Bahauddin Naqshband (1388 AD);


i) The silsilah was brought to the sub-continent by Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti Ajmeri (1141-1236 AD) – converted many Rajputs to Islam;

ii) His eminent disciples – Shaikh Hamiduddin (converted many Rajputs in Nagaur Rajputana) and Shaikh Qutbuddin Bakhtiyar Kaki (welcomed by Iltutmish but declined and carried out peaceful missionary work) – further popularized the order;

iii) Shaikh Fariduddin Ganj Shakr, Khalifah of Bakhtiar Kaki, produced galaxy of Sufi preachers who further spread message of Islam;

iv) Shaikh Nizamuddin Auliyah (1238-1325 AD), Ganj Shakr’s eminent disciple, produced many Sufis who propagated Islam and converted thousands in Bengal, Deccan and Gujrat;

v) Shaikh Salimuddin (16th C AD) a contemporary of Akbar, continued his Mission with the emperor;


i) The order was introduced in the subcontinent by Niamatullah and Makhdoom Mohammad Jilani by mid 15C AD;

ii) Shaikh Abul Maali of Lahore and Mulla Shah of Badakhshan were renowned saints;

iii) The order established firm hold in Punjab and Sindh;

iv) Shaikh Abdul Haq Muhaddis Delhvi, a celebrated Sufi scholar and Miyan Mir rendered services in Delhi and Sindh [Shah Jahan and Dara Shikoh held Miyan Mir and Mullah Shah in high esteem];

v) The order did not make much headway in the sub-continent during Delhi Sultanate;


i) Shaikh Bahauddin Zakariyah was the founder of most popular order of Sufis in sub-continent (Khanqah in Multan) – thousands including Chiefs from Multan, Lahore and Sindh embraced Islam;

ii) His son Sadruddin Arif succeeded him in Multan while disciple Syed Jalaluddin Bokhari (1213 AD) founded strong suhrawardi centre in Uchh Sharif – converted many tribes to Islam in Uchh;

iii) Shaikh Jalaluddin Tabraizi established his Khanqah at Deomahal in Bengal where Hindu and Budhist tribes flocked, converted to Islam and became his disciples;


i) Khwaja Baqi Billah introduced this order in the sub-continent and his celebrated disciple Shaikh Ahmed Sirhindi (Mujaddid Alf Sani) rendered valuable services to the purification of Islam during and after the reign of Mughal Emperor Akbar;

ii) The heretic ideas of Wahdatul Wajud were dispelled by him; he stood up against the un- Islamic practices of Akbar’s era, refused prostration in Jahangir’s ‘darbar’;
iii) Ma’sum, son of Shaikh Ahmed, followed his father. Aurangzeb Alamgir, as prince, used to attend his lectures and later as emperor translated Shaikh Ahmed’s ideas into action;


i) Shaikh Ahmed’s cause was furthered by Shah Waliullah, whose time was of great turmoil and anarchy of Muslim society – shia sunni rift and divisions among sunnis; Ijtihad was put in cold storage and shariah being misinterpreted; Shah Waliullah regenerated the Muslim society and revived the spirit of Shariah;

ii) Jehad Movement was spearheaded by Sayyid Ahmed Shaheed in NWFP and the Punjab. He waged a holy war against the sikh fascist forces and established supremacy of Islam; he was martyred in Balakot along with his comrade Shah Ismail and others;

iii) Similarly, many other movements were launched with the twin purposes – establish supremacy of Islam and fight against fascist forces in various provinces;

iv) These include Faraizi movement in East Bengal by Haji Shariatullah.


i) It is established from the above discussion that Islam spread in the subcontinent by peaceful means through missionary work of Sufis and Ulema;

ii) A few movements were launched at the end of the Mughal rule to check the advance of fascist forces to crush Islam and Muslims but these were in defence of faith and not really for spread of Islam.



i) The Muslim revivalism in Bangal during early 19th Century was a local manifestation of the contemporary trend for the return to orthodoxy, felt throughout the subcontinent. The first such movement, Faraizi movement, drew its inspiration from the principles of Wahabism in Arabia.

ii) Faraiz, meaning injunctions of God and the holy Prophet (PBUH).

iii) Like other revivalist movements the Faraizis prescribed strict observance of the principles of Islam and abhorred any deviation form them, especially shirk (polytheism) and Bid’ah (innovation).

iv) Social equality was emphasized and social discrimination and caste practices of any kind disapproved.

v) Most distinguishing feature of the movement was that its followers refused to attend the juma and eid prayers. They argued that according to Hanafi School of law, to which they belonged, these prayers could only be performed in the presence of a Caliph or his agent. To them British India was Darul Harb (a land of enemy), and not Darul Aman (land of peace). They resumed these congregational prayers only after creation of Pakistan.

vi) Haji Shari’atullah (1781-1840) the founder of this movement devoted his attention mainly to religious reforms.

vii) His son Dadu Mian (1819-1862) was less a religio-moral preacher and more a politico-military activist.

viii) Supporters of the movement were mostly depressed Muslim cultivators, oppressed by their mainly Hindu landlords or new class of European indigo planters who treated their native labourers almost as plantation slaves.

ix) Developing as a mass movement the faraizi assumed the form of a socio-economic reform movement.

x) Dadu Mian’s confrontations with these landlords brought him into conflict with the British authorities, who as founders of the permanent settlement of land revenue of 1793, always favoured the landlords upholding freedom of contract and laissez faire liberalism.

xi) During his life time Dadu Mian set up an elaborate underground organization with an administrative hierarchy discharging various responsibilities;

xii) Titu Mir (1782-1831) was another political militant, who initially followed Haji Shariatullah but, later became militant as Dadu Mian.


i) The religio-political activism generated by the movement contributed to the general transformation of the Indian Muslims from a religious community into a political force, later to be utilized by the Ulema and political elite in the late 19th and early 20th Centuries.

ii) The movement, along with similar movements, helped to create necessary momentum which brought about a measure of social unification and removed the internal social and cultural barriers that existed within the community.

iii) Another after effect was the activation of religious sentiment among the Muslims and reorientation of their attitude towards the Hindus.

iv) The revivalism succeeded in purging the Indian Islam of many Hindu practices and re-established teachings of early Islam in Arabia.

v) Wider social and religious contacts between Muslims of different regions reduced differences and opened new channels of communication. This resulted in further religious activities and sponsoring of institutions and organizations. The Islamisation efforts of the reform movements gradually generated a sense of solidarity across the social divisions of the community.
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