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Is a Pakistani Christian equal to a fellow Muslim?

19 December, 2005

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"A young Pakistani student belonging to the Christian faith has posed an interesting question through a petition in the Lahore High Court. The question is: Am I, a Pakistani Christian equal to a fellow citizen who is a Muslim ?For those of the readers who missed the news item reported by an English daily, this young student belongs to a low income group, is a practicing Christian and extremely bright. She has been competing to get into the King Edwards Medical College but was beaten on the list by 20 marks by a Muslim student who got the extra 20 marks for being Hafiz--e-Quran. So, now this young Christian girl has filed a plea in the Lahore Court declaring that she and the Muslim student had equal marks but the latter got the advantage of religion. The young Christian student claims that ``this is discrimination against religious minority students and a violation of fundamental rights granted by the Constitution of Pakistan." The petition admitted by the Lahore High Court demands that either the LHC should rule to abolish the policy or should declare that a parallel policy should be made to award twenty additional marks to religious minority students on the basis of their religious knowledge. Fifty eight years after the creation of the country to ask such a question through the courts is both tragic and hopeful".

Constitution of Pakistan, Part II, Chapter -1, Fundamental Rights, Article 22 says:-
(1) No person attending any educational institution shall be required to receive religious instruction, or take part in any religious ceremony, or attend religious worship, if such instruction, ceremony or worship relates to a religion other than his own.
(2) In respect of any religious institution, there shall be no discrimination against any community in the granting of exemption or concession in relation to taxation.
(3) Subject to law: (a) no religious community or denomination shall be prevented from providing religious instruction for pupils of that community or denomination in any educational institution maintained wholly by that community or denomination; and
(b) no citizen shall be denied admission to any educational institution receiving aid from public revenues on the ground only of race, religion, caste or place of birth.
(4) Nothing in this Article shall prevent any public authority from making provision for the advancement of any socially or educationally backward class of citizens.

What do you think of above?

Reader Comments:

I dont know why people say you cant converse with Allah. You can if you set your mind to. I did speak to him once and I also spoke to Jesus, Rama and even Buddha. But I digress.

If your constitution says you cannot discriminate against anyone on the basis of religion then you should not discriminate and allow a muslim girl to score over a christian girl. Either you respect your constitution or you dont. If you do for heaven sake admit the poor girl into the college and get done with it.

Oh, how come the college is still named King Edwards Medical College? Isnt King Edwards a christian? Why not make it Mohd Ali Jinnah Medical College or something?

allaisa xuver, United Kingdom - 20 January, 2006

Al-Haj.Faridullah.KOCH(Chairperson & Founder of The Islamitsiche Partij Ned, Netherlands writes:
ISLAM ALLAH(s.w.t) is in The Oneness of ALLAH(s.w.t) and NOT The Threeness of God."
I would just like to make clear that the "threeness" or "trinity" often associated with Christianity is a mostly Protestant Christian belief and is not something that all Christians believe, as I do not believe. Secondly, all forms of Christianity teach that there is only one God, the God of Abraham and Moses. The two other parts of the "threeness" to which you refer are Jesus Christ who we believe is the holy Son of God and the Holy Spirit which is difficult to define but is definitely not another God. There is one God, the others are son and spirit.

Angela, United Kingdom - 20 January, 2006

Keep to the point.

There are so many religious propagndist misusing this site.
Mr Koch for one chooses not to answer me, probably because he is unable. But he will indulge in a slanging match with other equally fundamentalists ,using terminology reminiscent of United States Maniacal Christian Fundamentalists from the Southern Bible Belt. The question is,if you have conveniently forgotten, Should Muslims and non believers be treated equally? Other Islamic proselyters keep ignoring this poor girls quandary. Do they think she should have an opportunity to have an education or do they really believe that NO FEMALE
should be educated. Tom Edgar Glen Aplin Australia

Tom Edgar, Aruba - 22 January, 2006

Both should get privileges

Islam teaches us to be fair and just to every human being whether muslim or non-muslim. The LHC should declare equal priveliges to every religious student who had a knowledge of their religion usually uncommon in their society. A person becomes hafiz after having a hard time. We have to work hard to remember the notes but a person remembering his/her whole Holy book have to face more hard time if we want to understand while being neutral. If she could do some extra ordinary work in her religion then she should be equally respected and equally benefited. Here in America Christians who have a nice voice to sing in the Churches they get more privileges in colleges and universities but hafiz here get no benefits. Those who have an islamic classes as IN Pakistan, when their marks are transfered to America the Islamic studies are not countes where as those who had a christian or jew education, there religious education marks are transfered. Mine were not transfered but it doesn't mean that i should plea the Hihg court. However, Pakistan should step first by declaring the equal prioviliges of religious education.

Umer Ansari, United Kingdom - 30 January, 2006

Mr Koch

I would like to add, for Mr Koch's benefit, that just quoting sayings without really thinking or understanding the expessions
i.e. learning by repetition, is no way of providing proof of anything. His expression, although a reversal, is a direct lift of a cliched .description of Atheists prevalent in the 18th century.

I refer to the A man without beliefs is without morals.
Maybe he lifted it from one of the Russian classicist novels
Les hommes sans moure et hommes sans religion. used by Pushkin. Come on Mr Koch and all others with minds enslaved with religious dogma. THINK for yourselves.
Tom Edgar Glen Aplin Australia

Tom Edgar, Aruba - 30 January, 2006

Hafiz i Quran

Medical profession deals with humans. it is a profession where one has to take into account that the one being 'served' to feel comfortable and relaxed. The ability of a person to convey such feelings of trust is exaulted if they can convey to their patient that they are a good muslim and a Hafiz.

In my opinion a Hafiz of Al Quran diserves to get admission to the best medical colleges all over the world since they has so much more to offer than just a good student who is aspiring to be a good doctor.

Nathan Sambul, United Kingdom - 26 February, 2006

Stick to the POINT

So many religious zealots - the fact is that the Constitution of Pakistan expressly forbids the action taken in favour of the Islamic student. As there is NOT a current policy at the school for other religions, the action must be deemed unconstitutional, and action taken against the institution.

baddbradd, Aruba - 27 March, 2006

Girl should get admission

She should definitely get admission - her religion is not Islam so she can't be a Hafiz - if she was a Muslim and not a Hafiz then we should have compared. However, because she is a Christian, she deserves admission because she shared the top position excluding points you get for being a Hafiz.

Hassan, Pakistan - 28 March, 2006

so whats the prob

pakistan means la illaha illal lah...
the non muslims must live as 2nd or 3rd grade citizens... or JUST GET LOSSTTTT!!!!

nnnnn, Pakistan - 29 March, 2006

Think! Islam is not forced on minorities

Islam is fair religion .. then we don't need this discussion.
But if we are discussing then we are hurting Islam with our emotional views ..
We talk being good ..but the fact is that minorities are well discrimnated and decimated
for practicing other religion. We muslims are already in large number, why are
we so nervous of our religion or somebody choosing other religion? Isn't somebody
chose islam from other we are the newer religion
else we convince world that we forced all of our minorities and islam is not religion of choice.

Zia, Pakistan - 29 April, 2006

No Religiuos Edge!!

how many of us muslims are having a common sense can think about it...if 1 or 2 out of 100 memorizes the glorious Quran, he must be given previlige...we cant' consider those "only two students" when filing that plea ignoring the majority...this is not the matter of religious discrimination AT ALL!!...but it is a part of the struggle against the ISLAM!!...phoonkon se yeh charagh bujhaya na jaye ga..

Asfaar Baig, Pakistan - 17 June, 2006

online friendship is best

i wnat start friend ship with a life partener. this is why i have been search in paktribune.

attaurrehman ghaznwi, Pakistan - 27 July, 2006

Conversion from Islam to chrsitianity!

expressing my complements, i would like to ask, what is the law of the Pakistan's Government for a muslim converted from Islam to christianity ? what will be the charges agaist him/her ?

Alexandros, Gibraltar - 28 October, 2006

Pakistan is an Islamic country

But we dont discreminate on basis of clour and cast and religion etc as happens in the west.What we pakistanis go through in western countries,every one knows best.Here christians have been chief justice and have enjoyed high careers in army which for Muslims in west in unimaginable.So we are nice people and i am very sure this story by a christian girl is a mere fabrication as i myself a doctor knows very well our christian brothers and sisters dont want to study at all.

ali haider, Pakistan - 17 April, 2007

give her the addmisson

its simple logic, the muslim girl should be judged against a muslim student, and if she is to be given extra marks for being Hafiz-e-Quran then she should be preferred against a non hafiz-e- Quran muslim student who has equal marks to hers. give the addmisson to the christan girl because thats fair. amd may i remind every one that the most secular religon in the world is islam . its only the bigots who have a narrow view.

pucca lahori, Pakistan - 03 May, 2007

Affirmative Action

In the United States and India they have reservations in jobs colleges for minority people including Muslims called affirmative action.It is only in Pakistan that I see reservation for the Majority!Can Muslims not study as well as the Minorities that they have to be given extra marks?

Gabe, Iran, Islamic Republic Of - 29 June, 2007



shahid, Pakistan - 09 August, 2007

I Can't Believe I am reading all this

Some person actually wrote that monorities should be 2nd or 3rd grade citizens in Pakistan. One Doctor wrote that Christians and other minorities don't want to read or write. What has become of Pakistan citizens---It is no wonder that other countries are telling us what to do.
In our stonehead mentality of religious supremacy we are running around like rabid dogs. Bit off topic here but then we encourage dictatorships here ; remember how we welcomed General Musharraf when he came to power. Like some philosopher has rightly said " WE GET THE GOVERNMENT WE DESERVE "

Arshad Ali, Pakistan - 25 October, 2007


to become hafiz, means one memorizes and can recite the entire qu'ran.
this is no small academic accomplishment, and from my understanding, reqires years of disciplining the memory and training it. such an academic exercise is certain to benefit a medical student, who must memorize copious material.

possibly a memory comprehension and retension test would be a more just way to settle this, as its not likely shes going to memorize the entire bible in time to get to college.
in this case-
but for future doctors in pakistan, christian ones who know they wil be competing for university at some point, and knowing muslims do the discipline of hafiz- an alternative but equivalent feat of schoalrship could be studied by christians if they choose.

but the whole question itself, is designed to make it a christian versus muslim equality question when it is not.

the question is designed to inflame emotions, not seek justice.

please forgive my ignorance, but WHY would a non-muslim even GO to an islamic university?
maybe its the best educatio and all thats available- but scholarly standards are just that. scholarly standards.
people often have different standards when they get to the masters level.
(besides the last 30 suras arent that long anyway)

id say the young lady is very bright indeed to get a lawyer, and sue the college-
and bring it to the attention of the international community.

VICTORIA, United Kingdom - 05 November, 2007

Minorities have equal rights as others......

I would like to make a comment on one of the comment earlier made by Mr Ali Header from Pakistan who worte that the minorities are enjoying equal rights as others. So Mr Haider i would like to draw your attention on the fact that there were some points in the history of Pakistan where Christians were treated as a 3rd grade citizen, even to such extent that on small things like eating or drinking with other fellow citizens.
So please dont say the things which are not true. Another thing which you said that Chritians dont want to study or learn then Mr Haider please tell me what are the opportunities Non-Muslims have in order to improve their livelihood?

Jabbar, Pitcairn - 12 December, 2007

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