You may totally reject Cyril’s story as a fabrication or a mere imagination of a low ranking reporter, or call it an inaccurate narration of a meeting among the country’s big shots, or you may protest against his inclusion on the ECL, or perhaps be interested in finding out who leaked this sensitive news. Regardless of our big shots’ moving stands on the story; I wonder what exactly were the ‘super sensitive’ contents of the meeting previously unknown to the public?

What should we call the boycott of five (out of eight) South Asian countries of a scheduled SAARC summit in Islamabad - if this is not diplomatic isolation, then what is? What about those massive rallies by Jihadists soon after the recent turmoil in Indian-held-Kashmir - what’s the message delivered to the outside world when LeT de facto head, Hafiz Saeed, addressed these rallies? These are the sort of questions currently being raised against Pakistan.

The so-called Shuhada Foundation issued open threats to the judiciary system, judges, and lawyers who may dare to release Asia Bibi. And the knee-jerk response from the interior ministry - deployment of 3000 security personnel in Islamabad during the court hearing. Obviously, our state is not in a position to confront those who declare anyone trying to uphold justice for Asia Bibi as blasphemous.

Shooting the messenger is never going to work; let’s face the realities on ground. Pakistan might have succeeded in putting down the immediate threat from FATA but this is not the end of story. Jihadi and Takfiri mindsets and their narratives are very much intact and cannot be destroyed by bombing. And if these outfits are kept under the carpet for future manoeuvrings, then we can only pray for the country’s future.

Let Kashmirs wage their indigenous struggle for rights, let’s stop distinguishing between good and bad Jihadi and Takfiri outfits, let’s stop all the proxy twitches in neighbouring countries. Otherwise, put the whole country on ECL; do this before the world put us on their Entry Control List (ECL).


Saudi Arab, October 14.