The Information Minister Fawad Chaudhary spurious statement in support of the appointment of Mr Atif Mian is the latest uproar he created on social media after his chopper’s costs claims. Mr Atif appointment itself is a separate issue which I do not want to debate here. However, what I want to highlight is the lack of credible information the minister disseminated.

Mr Chaudhary said “This is a man who the entire world is saying will receive a Nobel Peace Prize in the next five years.” I am wondering, since when the Nobel Peace Prize has started given to economists. The Nobel Peace Prize is for those who do the best work for the global peace. A person in his position should not make such blunders. Moreover, there is no evidence which substantiates his argument that Mr Atif would get a Nobel Prize in the next five years. Such reckless and unfounded statements will eventually undermine the genuine government claims.

He further said “We will not bow to extremists” has also exasperated moderate Muslims. Such feckless statements can risk conflating the mainstream Muslim voices with those of isolated extremists. Extremism should not be confused with religious fervour and love to the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). Most of those who are opposing the appointment on social media are moderate Muslims across all political parties including Tehreek-e-Insaf. PM Imran Khan promised to create Medina-like Pakistan with Hazrat Umar style law which has now further galvanised public religious zeal. The government should better understand the pre-requisites for Caliphs Rashidun like system.


London, September 5.