A state remains a state if it can protect the rights of life and property of every citizen. However, Pakistan is an exception to the ideals of the social contract between the citizens and state. Not a day passes when the rights of minorities are compromised in this country. It has become a routine when an angry mob challenges the writ of the state and violates the rights of defenceless people. The ugly scene that the city of Sialkot witnessed two days ago is a testimony to how the government is failing its religious minorities.

While the state –employees of Tehsil municipal committee– decided to demolish a building close to the worship place of Ahmadiyya community, a mob of 600 miscreants took on to the road. The charged crowd started demolishing the Ahmadi worship place near the building while raising hateful slogans against Ahmadiyya community. The act of vandalism is the violation of Fundamental Rights of people that the constitution guarantees them.

The videos that have made it to social media sites are showing a leader of the mob threatening people, quite openly, not to lodge a first information report (FIR) otherwise he will turn the whole city to the ashes. What is the state doing about such a militant mindset? The incident shows that the state has failed in implementing National Action Plan (NAP) that was aimed at curtailing terrorism and neutralising intolerant mindset. If the district government fails to apprehend the culprits, it means that it is in collaboration with such a militant mob.

While the municipal committee defends itself and its actions by declaring the house an illegal construction, the issue is not the legality or illegality of the building construction. The question worth asking is why was the mob successful in doing what it did to the religious site of Ahmadiyya community.

What kind of democracy are we living in? What kind of laws is running the state? The democracy we are living in is nothing but tyranny of the majority. The law of the land is anything but discriminatory. The chequered history of the country’s relation to its minorities has elevated the need for protection of minorities from possible abuse of the majorities and religious fanatics and zealots as one of the foremost priorities. Until and unless discriminatory laws are repealed against Ahmadiyya, they will bear the brunt of mob justice.

With the present scheme of things, it seems that the government wants to appease religious fundamentalists and right-wing parties. Inaction against the mob will mean that Pakistani state continues with its policy of hatred towards religious minorities.