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THE NGO MAFIA !

05 July, 2005

By Ahmer Muzammil


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If you live in Pakistan and still are not some how involved in either the real-estate business (its more like real estate scamming business) or the NGO phenomenon, then you truly havent arrived yet on the scene.

 So much has been written about one simple but courageous woman by the name of Mukhataran Mai that initially I choose not to comment on this story. But then I realized that the sole motivation behind my writing, whether its this article or any previous efforts, have been that I truly feel that most writers are biased and are working on an agenda. The Enlightened ones see nothing but faults and wrongs and ills in everything that is religious and traditional and hence blame all evil on religion some how. The other side, well they are just stupid for lack of a better word. They claim they are the flag barriers of religion and Islamic tradition, although they fail to comply and comprehend the basic principle of my beautiful religion, which is COMPASSION. Whenever I hear an ignorant man with a beard (I refuse to call him mullah or anything else because they are nothing but ignorant m an with beards) ranting and raving about how women should and shouldnt do this & that and the other, I would love to just smack him across the face just so he can calm the hell down and then tell him that you moron, do you know Who is regarded as the best amongst us according to the Prophet Muhammad (may peace and blessings of Allah swt be with him)? The one who is good in manners with his wife! It amazes the oxygen out of me that we claim to be the biggest religious pundits, hence we refuse to understand the beauty and the science of Islam and the teachings of our beloved Prophet may peace and blessings of Allah swt be with him. Of all the things Prophet (may peace and blessings of Allah swt be with him) could have declared as the prerequisite for being the best, he choose the one who is best in manners with his wife. Is this not worth pondering over? Its funny! I dont know how else to say it, but both these sides make fools out of themselves on television and in the media a nd the populous is going, Is that really the best our country has to offer? I was watching this talk show in which the response of every query that was directed towards the champion of all-human rights(by the way, raping, killing, child labor, exploitation, forced prostitution etc etc., unfortunately none of this fulfill the definition of human rights abuse. Apparently the only thing that jolts her in action is if heavens forbid society is denied a mix marathon) one Ms. Asma Jehangir was that I am sorry, I will not wear a burqa(veil). Interestingly enough not once the question was asked that Ms. Jehangir would you wear a Burqa(Veil)? The questions were the usual. So Ms. Jehangir, why did you feel it was necessary to held a mini marathon? Her response? I am sorry, I will not wear a burqa(veil). Next question? So Ms. Jehangir, do you feel that your organization should protest on more imp. Issues like workplace harassment, innocent people in prison, private jails etc? He r response? I am sorry, I will not wear a burqa(veil) Next question? So Ms. Jehangir, how come your organization fails to condemn atrocities of human rights at the hands of western countries?, even though you are the biggest NGO in Pakistan with the most foreign aid, however when it comes to doing actual work like getting innocent Pakistanis freed from foreign jails, or liberating Pakistani kids from middle eastern Camel-Run mafia, its always people like ansar burni who come to the rescue? Her response? I am sorry, I will not wear a burqa(veil). Next question? So Ms. Jehangir, do you prefer Biryani(Rice) or Qorma(Soup)? Her response? Ding ding ding! You guessed it. Its absurd, who is asking you to wear the veil? I categorically claim (although I have no scientific proof of that) that majority of women in Pakistan probably dont wear the veil(face covering), however they dont wear jeans & halter tops either as media would like you to believe. But my vexation is that why are the liberal women so obsessed with this veil phenomenon. Get over your low self-esteem issues and lets talk real issues. I assure you that the majority of women, who choose to wear a headscarf or cover their faces, do it of their own free-will. If my mother (who has a masters in Organic Chemistry, and was a college professor mind you!) refuses to go out in public without covering her head, or if thousands of young & old Muslim women all over the world including USA & Europe insist on covering their heads and would not even hesitate to fight for that right, its not because they are forced by the men, its simply because they understand it to be their religious obligation. You can choose to agree or disagree with them but it doesnt make them any less liberated than women who choose to wear a mini-skirt.

 It is so pathetic that these vultures pray on already victimized poor soles. The way Mukhtaran Mai was cashed by both the LIBERAL NGOs and the enlightened establishment was so wretched that it truly makes you wonder if these people have any conscience whatsoever. This poor woman was gang-raped on the orders of  the elders of the tribe. Those supposed elders and the perpetrators of this crime should have been publicly hanged. Why is it that if a police officer is killed anywhere in Pakistan, the killers always always some how meet justice in an Encounter by the police. Why cant for once this Encounter happen for the offenders of an innocent, weak, raped & brutalized woman? Oh never, how dare I even ask? The law will take its due course! In layman terms if the offenders are resourceful, God-Willing they will be free to go! Absolutely gut-wrenching.

 Lastly, although we truly appreciate the concerns of Ms. Rocca regarding the Mukhtaran Mais mothers forced illness due to which she was conveniently stopped by the Govt. of Pakistan to go abroad and share the reality of menace of Landlord Culture prevalent in Pakistan. We would kindly request her that she also looks in to bringing justice to some very unfortunate women who have been sexually harassed while in the armed forces of USA. The details are as follows:

       In 2004, 91 women formally complained of sexual abuse while serving in Iraq, Afghanistan and Kuwait.

       According to AP (Associated Press) 54 Women Officers in Colorado Air-force academy formally reported sexual misconduct against them.

       Captain Jennifer Matchmer of US Army has been reportedly raped by her superior officers 3 times in last 3 years, last time around when she reported the crime, instead of getting reprimanded the rapist was promoted to a higher rank. (hmm interesting!)

       A superior officer on 20th march 2003 in Kuwait raped Major Beth Jamison, even though the verdict has been given against the rapist, to this day no action has been taken to punish the perpetrator.

       In year 2003, according to FBI 93,233 women reported sexual abuse, that same year the reported incidents in Pakistan were less than 600(before anyone goes bizark and start fuming that in Pakistan cases are not reported, let me be the first one to acknowledge that, however this figure will never reach the alarming proportions of USA)

       Every year about 400,000 children become victim to sexual crimes in USA. In year 2004,   about 756 catholic priests were investigated of molesting young boys.

 

So with all due respect before we go on becoming the champion of women & human rights all over the world, first lets tackle this menace domestically in the LAND OF THE FREE & HOME OF THE BRAVE. Shall we?

End.

Reader Comments:

NGO`s

Various N.G.Os and political personalities are using Mukhtaran Mai rape case for their own cause. They are issuing statements to national and international media without keeping in mind the reputation, image and interests of their own country. These organizations or persons have never spoken of the injustices and crimes committed against women in other parts of the world. A number of women are languishing in Abu Gharib notorious prison and have been abused several times for no reason. Similarly rape cases are reported against Kashmiri women but these so-called human organizations have never spoken a word against these cruelties. They are busy in pleasing their masters, have succeeded in that and Mukhtaran Mai has been invited to USA. She will be a heroine there and will be used for libeling our society as well as our country and civilisation. The fact is that these rape cases are common in USA, and Mukhtaran Mai could not prove her claim in the court. She has accepted the invitation of USA to visit that country which shows what is in her mind and how successfully she has tried to use” rape as a weapon”. The N.G.Os have also been successful in their mission, as Mai is visiting their “boss country” and will be helpful in bringing dollars here for them. In this country whoever has actually been raped, has kept silence for the sake of her dignity and honour. Publicity on such a heavy scale, in spite of lapse of three years means that the court decision is correct and she must be stopped from visiting a country, the soldiers of which is abusing Muslim women daily and spare no chance in defaming Muslim countries.
The so-called human right organizations of our country should prefer national cause to their personal one.
The American should first mend their own country where rape, dacoity and murder is order of the day, close the notorious Abu Gharib and Guntanamao prisons, stop massacre of children and women in Iraq, then ask others to mend.
Muhammad Riaz,
Thana Malakand Agency,
Phone 0932441542.


Muhammad Riaz, Pakistan - 06 July, 2005

Honor and dignity

May I please reply, with all due respect, to Mr. Riaz?

Ms. Mukhtaren Mai's honor and dignity are undiminished in any way. The same holds true for any woman of Pakistan, or anywhere else, who has gone through the horror of rape.

What crime did Ms. Mai commit that her honor and dignity should even be in question?

Did she volunteer to be raped? Are her honor and dignity lost because she wasn't strong enough to fight off her attackers? Or did she lose her honor and dignity because she had the simple courage to bring the criminals, who cost her so much, into the light of day for all to see? What has she done that you want to see her imprisoned within her own country?

What is her crime that you want to add to her pain with your accusations and apparent scorn?

You seem to feel, Mr. Riaz, that Ms.Mai should have remained hidden away in the shadows. In doing that, who would she have helped? You? Would she have helped you maintain your illusion that all is perfect within Pakistan and that America is the true evil?

May I respectfully submit that no country is without sin and that no one is any better than anyone else? We are all God's children, are we not?

The time will come, when those who would blame a woman, in any way, for her rape, will go the way of the dinosaur, and that will be a great day for Pakistan and the world...

Perhaps, Mr. Riaz, you do not blame Ms. Mai. You seem simply to want her to keep quiet and live with her loss of "honor and dignity."

Actually, I shouldn't blame you, Mr. Riaz, for what you believe about America as well. Lies, as thick as confetti, swirl around us daily. Bu what will it accomplish if your eyes are always turned, looking at the faults of America?

It is comforting to point at what we see as the larger faults of another, I agree. But in doing this have we ever helped one living soul?

The US has borne daily insults and innuendo, cast her way, even by her own citizens. Believe me, I know how this hurts, but we all will survive. Pakistan will survive it too...Here I freely admit that America is far from being without sin...

At least Ms. Mai carries nothing with her except the truth, wherever she goes. She was raped. To ask her to hide herself away as if she were the criminal is to choose to go back to the cave.

Couldn't we all choose instead to stand with the courageous Ms. Mukhtaren Mai?

Here I go. Preaching at you all again. Sorry about that...God Bless Pakistan - and Ms. Mukhtaren Mai.



















Carollane, United Kingdom - 07 July, 2005

Snap out of it Mr. Riaz

Boy I tell you, Mr. Riaz and others like him are the reason that our beautiful religion and our pakistani culture get such a bad rap in the west. Are you joking with me, do you have any common sense whatsoever Mr. Riaz? How and why in the world can you blame the victim of this herendous crime. Do you know her personally? When you accuse her that she herself is cashing on her misfortune? What kind of a absurd and illogical argument is that?

The author rightly ponts out that both the governement and the NGO's are trying to cash in on this unfortunate women's behalf. But Mr. Riaz you had the travesty of pointing the finger at the victim. Who the bloddy hell gives you that right? Do you have any fear of Allah swt at all?

It annoys the life out of me when people use this stupid and ridiculous notion that some how the victim should keep quiet. Some how that is suppose to make things better? Why don't we just all togather adopt this policy on all crimes, why just stop at rape. lets just be complacent on all crimes. That should make everything better. How stupid is this argument.

Another biggoted and sexist insinuation in Mr. Riaz's comment was that some how a woman's honor is attached to her virginity? Which dark age do you guys live in? If this woman was prostituting or something maybe you could make the point, for the love of GOD this poor woman was forcibly raped people. How the bloddy hell does this affect her honor. As far as i am concerend the honor of the perpetraitors of the crime and the rapist should have been marred. We need to grow up as a society and stop blaming the victims of these crimes. It is pathetic and sad, a poor woman was brutalized physically and now as a society we are brutallizing her emotionally and psychologically. What a shame!

Abu_Safwaan, Pakistan - 07 July, 2005

Feudals

All these women are victims of Unislamic councils (Punchaaiyats) and feudals, the formar butlers of British raaj.
If we want to get rid of these barbaric incidents, we have to get rid of these feudals and abolish these Punchaaiyats, but unfortunately our consitutional assembly is full of these people and they will never let happen.
Few months ago, a lady MNA tried to pass a law against Karo Karee in assembly, what to talk of opposition, even parlies from govt benches voted against that law.

May Allah help us, aameen.

Haroon, Netherlands - 08 July, 2005

NGO`s

Dear Sir,
Abusafwan and others have not read my letter carefully. My only objection is that the matter should not be internationalised and she must be helped practically. She was raped by a few persons in Multan forcibly but humiliated by these NGO`s in the whole world. One should not kick in the guts, come forward and help the lady practically. The case is 3 years old, where these sympathisers were in the last thre years?
I have never spoken against Mai. I only want her not to to tarnish the image of her country by making models her rapist.

Muhammad Riaz, Pakistan - 08 July, 2005

I totally agree with the writer, a detail study in U.S. shows that a large number of teenagers are raped while dating,

Western media's attention is only towards islamic countries.

I wish if our Govt. & media could do something to stop them or atleast give good answer.

Muhammad, Holy See - 08 July, 2005

los angeles

The writer it seems has gone out of his mind. If a rape happen in US. THe rapist is punished not the victim as happened in case of mukhtar mai. I have read lot of news story about mukhtar mai. None blamed Islam for the rape as the writer indicate. His mother chose to wear headscarf does not indicate she is free. Sometimes people have fear that if does not do something what other people will say in this case your father or family or other relative or you. She probably is fearful of narrow minded people like you around her. As you say most of the women wear it according to their will. Did you take a free survey, voter identity is not disclosed. You may find amazing results. Another thing about asma jahangir, she is protesting not for the mixed marathons to be held but to make a point to the narrow minded people like the writer understand that women also has right to participate in cultural events. And for the last do not campare the freedom in US to the freedom in pakistan. In US victim is not either forced out of country or has to burned herself or imprisoned in her house. Open your eyes to the world.

vikas kumar, United Kingdom - 09 July, 2005

get this plot vacated to prove example of land grabbing law

Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz said that land encroachment was illegal under the new law and the government will set examples by getting its property vacated from grabbers. What is land grabbing? The vested interests always keep their interest supreme in making any law. As such in the definition of land grabbing the priced land grabbed under the name of “allotment on quota” at throw away price has been excluded. If Shaukat Aziz is really right in showing example then he ought to show by getting the posh billions worth plot on Bunder Road Karachi behind Bundoo Khan Kabab recently allotted by Sindh Minister Imtiaz Sheikh at nominal price to one of his servant which otherwise in open market can fetch billions. Will Shaukat Aziz get this vacated. Shaukat Aziz will not set this example as he is to avoid such hot topics to keep the chair of his boss safe which otherwise Col® Riaz Jaffry says Shaukat is keeping an army of ministers while “poor” Musharraf is struggling for country's economy.

Zafar, Pakistan - 12 July, 2005

blind fool

When was the last time the courts of the LAND OF THE FREE punished a woman by having her gang raped??? Look at yourself before pointing your fingers elsewhere.

Captain America, United Kingdom - 12 August, 2005

The right to deflower women

In my ancestral lands, women are considered the chattels of the feudal lords and used as they wish. I am not defending this ancient practice, though it was well known and commonly committed in the West as "droit de seigneur" or "right of the lord". What I am saying is that women like Mukhtaran Mai should have the sense to keep these happenings within the four walls of their homes, or "Chaar diwari", as it is called here in Pakistan. A few years ago we never heard about these incidents, not because they did not occur but because women put their dignity before their claim to redress.


Sher-Afzal Mazari, Pakistan - 26 September, 2005

Shame! The right to deflower women

It is a BIG SHAME for anyone who can write or read to say things like Sher-Afzal Mazari. What are you talking about? Is your mother and sisters, and wife not a woman? Would anyone be happy and delighted if what happened to Mukhtaran Mai happen to their sisters, mothers, and daughters? The "Chaar diwari" word is a narrow minded thought, and because there are so many narrow minded people here in Pakistan, no wonder Pakistan is so behind the world and not progressing. No wonder the whole world harrass Green Passport holders.
I request Sher-Afzal to think carefully and watch his words before he write. Sher have no respect to women and their dignity, and he forgot that his mother is a woman also who have born him. Without women, men cannot come into this world. Go and show me a man who can give birth. This is a blessing from Allah that only and for Men to know that Men cannot be on their own and come into this world and without women.

westpoison, Pakistan - 25 May, 2006

media not reporting enough cases

I could never understand how educated people like Muhammad would post that message. Pakistani media is just not reporting all the cases because we our media is not professional and do not have access to all those happenings each day. The police would also not register fir for any case unless you bribe them. The police reject any such cases and threaten the victims. The victims and their families are too afraid of their honour and afraid that their lives will be threatened and therefore issues are not reported. Government has no right to stop the media and the media also should report the truth always.

westpoison, Pakistan - 25 May, 2006

I agree with the writer

Whenever I hear an ignorant man with a beard (I refuse to call him mullah or anything else because they are nothing but ignorant man with beards) ranting and raving about how women should and shouldnt do this & that and the other, I would love to just smack him across the face just so he can calm the hell down and then tell him that you moron, do you know Who is regarded as the best amongst us according to the Prophet Muhammad (may peace and blessings of Allah swt be with him)? The one who is good in manners with his wife!

, Pakistan - 25 May, 2006

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