Is Pakistan an

autonomic country?

 

Prosperity and peace can only be achieved in a country if it does not give up its autonomy. Unfortunately, Pakistan is dropping its autonomy gradually. The latest budget speech by the PTI was totally based on the IMF. With the exception of this, democracy is crawling like a patient snake. A country must have a degree of autonomy, or have freedom from external authorities. Pakistan is too dependent on countries such as China and the US. The PTI government has had a hold on positive decisions so far. 

KHAIR MUHAMMED,

Sukkur.

 

Misunderstanding Islam

 

No religion in the world encourages violence, injustice and hatred against the existence of diverse culture and civilization. Similarly, Islam always imparts the teachings of love and peace. Islam is the only religion that uplifts the standard of humanity and ensures equality.

Unfortunately, the present world depicts a poor image of Islam. From pre 9/11 to post 9/11, Islam has been blamed for only causing destruction and breeding terrorists. But the fact is that terrorism knows no religion. Now from across the world the Turkish President, Tayyab Erdogon, is being criticised for renovating the Hagia Sophia as a mosque within his territory. Islam is not as rigid as the world thinks. Spreading love, ensuring peace and curbing racism are the cordial principles of Islam.

FAROOQUE PANHWAR, Sukkur.

 

100 Textbooks Banned

 

Banning is a new trend in Pakistan. A few weeks ago, we were discussing a ban on games and social sites. This now seems ironic. On the 23rd of July, the Punjab Curriculum and Textbook Board (PCTB) Managing Director Rai Manzoor banned 100 books being taught in private schools. Rai Manzoor claims that the books carried blasphemous content, for example teaching supposedly  against the “Two-Nation Theory’’. PCTB has banned 31 publishers including Oxford and Cambridge. District Education Authorities (DEA’s) will be visiting private schools too to check if banned books are still taught. PCTB MD said FIRs will be registered against publishers for violation under the PCTB Act 2015. Books carrying the sayings of Mahatma Gandhi instead of Muhammad Ali Jinnah and Allama Iqbal will also be banned. 

To conclude, the problem is that PCBT have implied that they can register a police complaint against a person who does not comply with the publishing board which under section 14 of the PCTB Act 2015. Banning and imprisoning persons for publishing a book the board has a difference of opinion with is complicated and can lead to different circumstances. There should be a course related to spiritual/religious studies, rather than a strict system that reinforces specific beliefs. If we need our youth to be impartial, open minded and reasonable when they grow up, they must not be forced to do anything. The PCTB should reconsider its recent decisions. It does not even provide an avenue for those whose publications are prohibited to appeal or even defend their case in front of the Board. The banning of books is a serious matter, which ruins our international image. The board is empowered so it must have strict checks and a review body accountable for this act.

YUSRA FATEH, Karachi.

 

 Suicide

 

Suicide is haunting Pakistan. Lately, our country has witnessed a surge in the trend of suicide. The factors associated with the problem in question are poverty, unemployment, bullying and mental illness. While the government is taking effective measures to tackle issues in our country, suicide is not being given adequate attention however.

One of the major causes of suicide is poverty. Around 30% of our country is living below the poverty line. In failing to sustain a family and with no other option available, they choose to end their life. Another major reason is unemployment. According to research conducted in 2019, the unemployment rate was 4.45%, it is expected to surge to 9.59% in 2021. There have been many instances where youngsters feel hopeless and helpless. Ergo, they tend to lean towards suicide. Fearfully, this trend of suicide will continue to grow as unemployment surges. Another reason is bullying. There are various forms of bullying ranging from body shaming to other forms of ridicule. In our poor society, the pressure that follows after one fails in a desired goal is exceptional. It is so overwhelming and unsustainable that the bullied one ends their life. Many such cases have been reported. Even having dark skin is considered a curse. Moreover, esteemed researchers have observed that suicide is associated with mental illness. Because of its supreme importance, the government needs to tackle this issue on an urgent basis. It could be done by implementing a universal suicide prevention strategy. Also, not only should the government launch poverty alleviation programs like “Ehsaas” but they should also better the economic standing of the country to employ more people.

ADIL AHMED, Shikarpur.