A disappointed Pakistani Christian

Published: March 30, 2012

You call me a kafir and you think eating with me is haraam. So, my dear Pakistan, tell me, where shall I go?

Dear Pakistani Muslims,

Pakistan has been hell for my family and I.

Yes, we get Christmas and have a few churches here and there and attend the same schools as the rest of you, but life as Christian minorities has been torture for us.

I had to carpool  in a public van to a convent school that had the richest and most influential of Pakistani Muslims in attendance. I shared class rooms with the most spoilt and unforgiving spawn of business tycoons, politicians, smugglers and architects who called me a “karanti”.

A karanti is a derogatory, slang term for dark Christians, because of course being born as a “darkie” in Pakistan automatically makes you ugly and unimportant with horrible marriage prospects – if any at all. They also degraded my father because he could not afford to drive me to school in a tinted, bullet proof Land Cruiser.

My father’s ‘shameful’ salary as an accounts teacher was not substantial enough for us to mingle with the creme de la creme of Defense; a dingy apartment in Nazimabad and a sputtering motor bike was all we could afford.

Many of the Muslim kids refused to share food with me, nor would they take a bite or sip from anything I may have consumed. I have had girls tell me point blank that their parents have instructed them never to sit and eat with people of other faiths because it’s haraam (forbidden). I will tell you what’s haraam; teaching your children to hate instead of love…that’s what’s haraam.

I will never forget an incident in school during a physical education class when, as I was passing the volley ball to a Muslim girl, her eyes suddenly shot daggers at me and she screeched:

Why do you wear that cross with an idol on it?

“This is my prophet…Jesus”, I said in a hoarse whisper because mother had always told me never to argue with people about religion.

“Just like you wear that Allah around your neck, I wear the cross.”

“Idol worshipping is haraam, and the Prophet hated idol worshippers. You are a kafir (disbeliever)”

The word kafir has resonated within me forever. I was marked, stamped and stained for life as if a member of the kachra class in India.

Gradually, my cousins, aunts and uncles began migrating. My father was offered a sponsorship visa but he refused, saying his duty was to serve and protect Pakistan no matter how many Christians were killed, executed for false blasphemy cases, paraded naked in village streets and discriminated against in every way.

My mother and I begged him to reconsider.

We asked him to think about the worsening situation of fanaticism in the country and what it could mean for us one day, however he was resilient in his patriotic thinking, putting his service into educating Pakistani children before anything else -even his own family.

I have always felt emotionally and mentally restricted in this country, unable to voice an opinion on anything remotely related to politics or religion, while many of my cousins and relatives continue to live freely in the West.

What I find strange is that I have done my Islamic research because I wanted to know the reason behind the rising hatred toward anyone remotely non-Muslim, and contrary to popular belief Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh) was generous and kind to members of various faiths. It is after reading much of his work that I have concluded that it is not Islam that is the problem at all, it is the wretched people who claim to be Muslims but have hatred, racism and religious stigma engrained in their core.

No matter how many Taseers are born, there will always be a Mumtaz Qadri in almost every strata of Pakistani society ready to kill, and many will defend this action even at the highest political levels.

So, my dear Pakistan, tell me – where shall I go?

Is it fair that we are practicing our religion in a phobic way? Is it fair that I no longer wear my cross because someone may take offence to it?

Jinnah wanted to create a state that would encourage freedom of religion. Today, not only have you all failed Jinnah but you have taken a religion of peace and manipulated it to terrorise us. We cannot be silenced for long.

As Abraham Lincoln said:

If by the mere force of numbers a majority should deprive a minority of any clearly written constitutional right, it might, in a moral point of view, justify a revolution.

Yours sincerely,

A disappointed Pakistani Christian

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In your opinion, are religious minorities allowed to practice their faith freely in Pakistan?

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Cynthia Roberto

Cynthia Roberto

A Pakistani Christian piano teacher who campaigns for the rights of all Pakistani religious minorities and is greatly inspired by Salmaan Taseer.

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • Vikram

    @papoo piplia: “In Pakistan, the problem also stems from the influence of the Hindu caste system as most Christians are low caste converts.A white christian would certainly be treated different in Pakistan. The problem is much more profound in Caste dominated India.”

    Why do you think Arabs treat Pakistanis like “lower caste” people but treat “White Christians” as their masters? Why do you think Arabs don’t let their women marry Pakistani men? Do you think Arabs have been influenced by Hindus? Do you think Arabs still see Pakistanis as descendents of their Hindu slaves? You seem to be very intelligent, please answer this.Recommend

  • A Sunni

    @A Shia:
    I’m a sunni devebandi & believe me I never saw in my life any Shia as a sensible human being with good moral values. Whenever they see a pure sunni like me they start teasing him and spreading hatred & confusion in people for him just because of his being sunni wahhabi. This has been the case with me for a long time through my Shia neighbours. I found them the best in teasing and looking down upon others because of difference in faith. They are hypocrites at the same time keeping good relations with others to take advantage from them. May Allah curse such people.Recommend

  • Hassan

    btw, racism, discrimination and intolerance exist in EVERY society. KKK in the USA, the BNP in the UK, there are so many. Get real. these things exist not only in Pakistan. we have to work together to make them less effective, make them less worth our attention, make them less important, no longer relevant. These are values that any human being would feel threatened with.

    These lines are only used by people who seek power and want to manipulate people into thinking in groups (be it color, ethnicity, religion) we common people need to be smarter than radicals (in all walks of life: politicians, extremists, etc) we should identify and stay away from such “negative influential” people.

    It’s not what people think of we are but what we think of ourselves. Be Pakistani and protect one another in our dear diverse and culturally rich country. Work together to root out negative values and promote only positive values !!!Recommend

  • Cynical

    @Author

    The time for moaning and sulking is over.Migrate or convert.Think about the future of your children.Recommend

  • Vikram

    @Cynical: Says”The time for moaning and sulking is over.Migrate or convert.Think about the future of your children.” Same thing happened with your forefathers but they were given a choice die or convert. You are doing a good job, you think like a “TRUE MUSLIM”. If Christians or other minortites are expelled, non-Muslim world should expell all the muslims and let Muslim ummah mak a “GREATER PAKISTAN” where Muslims can blow up each other at wil and you can be the Khalifa.l. In the end most Muslims think like “cynical” they want to convert people to Islam by force as if Muslims have not already converted problems in this world.

    I have met many Muslims in USA who are great people. I am afraid “TRUE MUSLIMS” jihadi thinking will sooner or later make their life a hell.

    You are insulting God by terrorizing minorities, who are created by the same God. Recommend

  • Akber

    i have read something long back which i still find it best explains type of Muslims live in Pakistan, they say:

    there are three types of Muslims in Pakistan the one who get lucky often, occasionally and seldom and in turn they are liberal, moderate and extremist.

    Your crime is less being a non Muslim (christian) and more being lower middle class studying among upper class.

    If you’re father was rich exploiters like rest of your peers in school you never would have to face such humiliation which you did, that is the only thing that matters particularly to upper class, its sad but true.Recommend

  • Test

    @@Cynthia Roberto:
    To reply to your article.. I would say you are not alone. The world has noticed these evils of this country. The racisim against chrsitians is something that out of ignorance and true ignorance becuase if the “so called” leaders wanted to become a prosperous nation they would not be divided themselves and hate each. Ethinic groups in Pak. hate each other. So, while you experience racism by religion, the muslims hate each other based upon ethnic, political and social divides which is why the nation never got anywhere and is in world “rogue” status. Don’t worry. The same people who called you names also went to teh christian schools as they are the best in Karachi and also are foreign educated in christian nations becuase they know they have better educational standards then muslim nations. THey learn concepts of diplomacy and equal rights in christian nations from prestigous universities however, they do not retain any of those economic principles and apply them to better Pakistan. All of the gov’ts elite are foreign educated. The nation is so divided amongst themselves in so many ways. You have christianity on your side. Don’t worry you will be fine with that wherever you go. Hopefully you are out of that racist environment. Recommend

  • Augustine

    Its true that the position is worst one but this practice can be tackled. I am also working in Muslim community and in my place of business, in three markets, i am the only Christian here but i have never ever think of pity for me, if any body showing discrimination, i told him that you are not superior but i am because i am believer and there is no other nation who have the privilege to accept Jesus Christ as our savior, we are the group of saints and we don’t need to think about the discriminatory behavior of illiterate nation who cant realize what they are doing.Recommend

  • Vikram

    @Augustine:
    Iif any body showing discrimination, i told him that you are not superior but i am because i am believer” If one God created every one, treat every one as equal, You are doing same thing some Muslims do. Feed hungry Muslims so that they don’t have to die as suicide bombers to get money for their families.Recommend

  • http://sajjadchangezi.wordpress.com/ Sajjad Hussain Hazara

    Dear Cristian Hum-dard,

    Salute to you for raising your voice…. I agree with you on the shameful atrocities we muslims, including Shia, Sunnis etc have done to the ethnic/religious minorities…

    What kills my mind is that I cannot lie to you.. I cannot deceive you… I cannot make fake promises… This society is eating itself right from inside and all I can say is that I will be by your side and share the atrocities, tortures, killings !!!!Recommend

  • Arsalan J. Sheikh

    As a muslim with christian friends, I can believe what you write about is actually quite common. I have seen christian friends settle in quite normally, and also seen them face awful pressures that they alone know.

    Wish you and your family all the best.Recommend

  • Muhammad Farooq

    I felt sad after reading your open letter. I live in the West and have no such issues with Christains and for that matter persons of other. One reason u were discriminated against was your eco status vis a vis your class fellows. This type of discrimination also totally unacceptable. Bur u will appreciate it has nothing to do with your being a Christian. As you already Islam does not permit its followers to discriminate on the basis of religion. There have neen many cases during life time of the Prophet (peace be upon him) when two persons ( a muslin and a non Muslim) took their dispute to the court. Who hearing both sides decided in favor of non-Muslim based on the merit of his claim. Those who have developed attitudes contrary to the teachings if Islam are answerable to God for their wrongs. Being a citizen of Pakistan you are as important as any other Muslim. Being human being u are as respectable and lovable as any other human being regardless of caste creed etc etcRecommend

  • Vikram

    @Muhammad Farooq:
    “Bur u will appreciate it has nothing to do with your being a Christian” I know you don’t mean to be bad, but what author is writing about has everything to do with being a Christian. Muslims can’t treat Christians bad in USA, but there are imams who are deraming of making US a land of Muslims where every one will follow Sharia. Even few imams in UK have called for killing of all Kafirs. Just search the Internet and read.Recommend

  • Iftikhar Hussain

    Dear Cynthia Roberto!
    I feel sad and embarrassed after reading your letter. I totally agree with you. I was a student in a missionary school and I have witnessed what all you wrote but I could not do anything (may be I was afraid). But I deeply apologize for everything that we “THE MUSLIMS” have done and are doing. Fault lines in our society have become so deep that I dont see any hope. Read the comments by “A Sunni” and “A Shia”, and you will see that you are not alone. These beasts are tearing themselves as well. Recommend

  • http://Gmail Shahin

    Dear Cynthia, all I can say to you is I am terribly sorry. At least for me the Christian community is very dear and near to me and of course many thousands of Pakistani. Regards.Recommend

  • Aamir

    @Cynthia Roberto
    I appreciate your word that i believe this is the voice of all oppressed minorities(religious, ethnic, linguistic) in Pakistan. Being a Pakistani i feel really shame on those people who believe on Pakistan but not on divers Pakistan was made for all not only for Muslims. Christians contributed a lot for nation building of Pakistan through their institutions. This is the time to acknowledge their contributions at national level and in educational discourse, then i believe it can harmonize the society. Recommend

  • Nouman Haroon

    @Sane:

    Your comments are rational and realistic. Muslims here even participate in Christmas, Halloween, Fathers day, Mothers day and other Christian religious rituals.

    FYI : Halloween, Fathers day, Mothers day aren’t ” Christian Holidays/Rituals ” .Recommend

  • Asma

    Contrary to popular belief?? Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) has always been known to be generous and kind to all faiths..Recommend

  • Mkashifayub

    Dear All,
    I’m Sory to say that, these all activities are not only affecting
    Minorities but also the people who areless wealthy and childrens of low education, have to face these discreminatios all across Pakistan.
    Why do we have saveral types of categories in education, such as a local schools, then English medium, and finally City Schools etc .

    Please don’t limit this issue with the minorities.Recommend

  • khan of quetta

    half the truthRecommend

  • Lamss

    @Vikram:

    “Their caste system defines the lowest as the “kachra class.” Take up a sociolgy class and you’ll learn a thing or two.” Arab caste system defines Pakistanis as “Kachra class”. How many people know Arabs don’t let their women marry Pakistani Muslim man?

    I see you repeating the same things in every blog’s comments section! Everything you say is derogatory about Pakistan. Islam and Muslims…..seriously, come up with new things atleast so that we don’t get bored.Recommend

  • haroon

    @@mariumarif:
    you have that same old excuse of America and what happened to you there, is that a justification for what is going on with us here? or just a mere get way for you? really come live with us tan your skin, live like us, i can bet right now YOU have no clue of our perspective no clue WHAT THE UNDER CLASS PERSPECTIVE is if you listen you will come out of your so called liberal veil. Recommend

  • haroon

    @Hassan:
    Yes you get real too and listen to us for once and hear what we are going through, you are just giving an excuse, this excuse i have heard a million times from your mouths, a escape route you always give “oh its happening every where oh look what america did oh look in india. Now I SAY OPEN YOUR EYES AND LOOK HERE IN PAKISTAN. your mediocre, blame game and finger pointing we had enough of it dont think of us as fools. so if you say you want to do something stop persecuting us. Pakistan is at no 6 in minority persecution. time now YOU GET REAL. Recommend

  • haroon

    @khan of quetta:
    Do tell the truth oh gr8 one, like we the minority is dying to know your “truth”. about our condition here, ignoring the fact you are not a minority not knowing our perspective not knowing what we go through. but still we will listen to your “truth”.Recommend

  • haroon

    @Cynical:
    loved your thinking i should say this to you guys when i go to a Christian country how is that??Recommend

  • Adeel Salman

    @@mariumarif: You are actually naive… and well extremely ill informed about socio/political situations. you madam live in your little bubble.
    It is clear that you come from a privileged class. but whats worse is that in spite of all the education you got you still lack intelligence or brilliance to understand social scenarios. I have no clue what kind of degree you got from US but regardless of that STOP claiming that you were maltreated in US. For all i know you must have been actually welcomed and made to feel at home at US… so don’t even go there… all these Muslims claiming about bad experiences in the west… well WHY DON’T YOU COME BACK TO THE ISLAMIC REPUBLIC OF PAKISTAN… and in your case i am sure you enjoyed your stay there and must have made good friends….
    Do you even know what it feels to be in the minority and that to based on your religion, economic background and physical attributes. Its disgusting to see how many people have gotten defensive on this post just like you… my message to all such Muslims STOP PLAYING THE VICTIMS when clearly all you do is exploit situations for your own benefits.
    Read the headline – You all are turning more and more insecure, stubborn and discriminatory day by day.
    Minority is no longer a term that can be actively practiced in a modern democracy but then again Pakistan or its Muslims don’t care much about democracy in the first place.
    How terribly insecure must you all be that you made it a point to mention it in the constitution that only Muslims can be president, prime minister or army chief… and is there a way you can give any justification for the infamous blasphemy law.
    Are you aware of the number of minorities that are currently being victimized through forced conversions, girls being raped, blasphemy….
    The Christians in Pakistan do not enjoy the same economic status as the majority Muslims do… so they are unable to get good education and thus cant get good jobs…. when people talk about cases like yourself… how you went to an elite school and bla bla bla bla … all i want to say is THERE IS A WORLD OUTSIDE YOUR LITTLE BUBBLE….Recommend

  • Sherry

    @sick of this nonsense:
    Yeah sick mind in interior of sindh hindus doing very well..that we can see by those hundreds of abduction of their women and mens..And same for christians in karachiRecommend

  • Arif

    @A Sunni:
    Criticizing each other has always been the problem of Muslims, it’s not anything new. Shia’s criticizing Sunni’s and Sunni’s criticizing Shia’s. However, I, being very much neutral wanna say that It’s not Islam that teaches us to hate those who don’t match with your beliefs. So, just by experiencing this particular case you described is not enough to make a harsh statement against the entire shia sect.
    Today, Pakistan, Jinnah’s Pakistan, is no more the same Pakistan Jinnah had struggled for and Pakistan for which thousands of our Muslim brothers had sacrificed themselves. Our Pakistan is going toward a dark patch of hatred, violence, sectarianism, and so many other negative -ism’s.
    We, being a Pakistan and a Muslim, and not a person of any particular sect, should try to sought out the solution of this problem which i think lies in the unity of all the Muslims of Pakistan.
    Long Live Pakistan….Recommend

  • Arif

    Dear Christians,
    I appreciate you for writing your feelings that you experienced being a Pakistani. I value your emotions. I just can say this much that I totally agree with your research that Islam and Muhammad (P.B.U.H) has never taught the humanity and not only the Muslims to hate others. These are those Muslims who have never known the true Islam who behave in such a worst way with the minorities. Not all the five fingers are equal, good and bad are in every school of thought. Maybe you have found many Muslims hating you and criticizing you for being a christian but for them only thing i can say is “I have sympathy for You” and to you all I can say is “hates off”.Recommend

  • sarah

    As much as I’d WANT to sympathise with you, I fail to do so. Though, you may be right about some things, I doubt it was all this crazy.
    I am a Muslim. I went to a convent school. I, also, used to go to school and come back on a van. I had three closest friends. All three Christians. I don’t EVER remember jumping away, when a Christian tried to hug me. And I don’t remember any of the girls that came to school in huge cars, doing so, either.

    I’m a Pakistani living in London. Sometimes, people don’t even sit next to me on the trains. And I’m called ‘Brown’, ‘Paki’, ‘a-hole’ all the time. Should I give up and say ‘there’s so much hatred, I think I’ll psychoanalayse the Queen and see where all of this is stemming from.Recommend

  • Vik

    Cynthia,

    First I am so sorry for the pain and unjust behavior you have been forced to bear. But please don’t loose your belief in the enlightened youth of this country. The times have changed and we are no longer the slaves of people who portray a type of Islam or Muslim only they can relate to. Islam offers full religious independence and I have no doubt in my mind that the cross you wear is in no mean offensive to Muslims. It is your belief system and your should practice it.

    Please do not expect Qadri to come out of every street of this country. That will not happen I assure you as I am represent the middle class of this country. You are not a Kaafir, You are not a non-believer. and please do not generalize the people of this country from the experience you had.

    I hope and I pray that you will get all the independence and respect you need to be HAPPY PAKISTANI CHRISTIAN :) Recommend

  • Vikram11

    @sarah:
    “As much as I’d WANT to sympathise with you, I fail to do so. Though, you may be right about some things, I doubt it was all this crazy.”

    Sarah you assume all Muslims are good like you. At the same time you also think “all English” people don’t like you and call you Paki,, Brown. Christians and other minrorites including Ahmadis live under constant fear in Pakistan.
    Read the following article from yesterday’s how Ahmadis get terrorized in land of pure.

    Social terrorism: religious vendetta against Ahmadis | DAWN.COM

    dawn.com/2012/04/17/social-terrorism-religious-vendetta-against-ahmadi-stud…

    2 days ago … Pakistani Ahmadis today live in constant fear.—Illustration by Faraz Aamer Khan/ Dawn.com. Religious persecution of people from Ahmadiyya …Recommend

  • Rabia Abrar

    The poll question was a little confusing. Not really confusing but I read it quickly and thought it is asking about whether they should be allowed to, so I clicked “Yes”. Can’t take it back now :-/ So guys, don’t go on the poll results. I think the answer is a definite No.Recommend

  • A Muslim

    @Bushra Thumbs up to you and your comment Ms. Bushra… Totally agree with u on this node that Muslims are killing each others… how can some1 hope them to behave in a nice way with other minorities..!!! Crap…
    May God Bless This Country and All Those Who Live In This Country Regardless Of Majority and Minority…Recommend

  • Shujatullah

    Muslim majority countries by nature/culture are oppressive towards their minority Non-Believers. From Turkey to Iran to Pakistan to Indonesia, all the same. Yet, when minority Muslims in Non-Muslim/Secular countries are requested to remove their Hijjab, we are up in arms and rioting. Its shameful. When are we going to mature as an Ummah?Recommend

  • Indi

    Any country which does not provide its citizens with freedom to choose their religion and provide fundmental rights of security, freedom of religion & expression will be headed towards disaster. India is not perfect, but is moving in the right direction. Unfortunately, from what i know of how minority communites are being treated in pak, it seems to be in reverse gear.Recommend

  • Mariyah

    Cynthia this post is directed to you. I can say i understand what you feel because, i am a Pakistani Christian living abroad now. I was born and raised in Pakistan, i went to murree Convent and i was one of the seven girls in the entire school (hostel) who were Christians. Some of the things you have mentioned above is like a recap to me. It dint happen to me but i have witness it happen to the my fellow students who were Chritians. I am not defaming my school or its pupil. Till date iev hardly had any Christian friends (not that i dont want to but because, i grew up with Muslim girls). I had witnessed slight religious discrimination in school but it was’nt untill college that i learnt more about it and realized its every where.
    It was in december of 2007- ‘Christmas Season’ as i had known it. My college, St.Mary’s (also run by Christian missionries) arranged a Christmas play as they did every year. The idea of it got me excieted and i signed up to play the role of mother Mary. My teacher had me rehersaled and i was choosen. We performed in front of 300+ audience, half of them being positive, encourging Muslims. All went well untill day two. Regular classes started and it was not once or twice but several times i was stopped by my own class fellows, teachers and other pupils and asked just one question
    ‘are you a Christian’? Some asked with a look of excietment others with disappointment and few with awe. Why? because, i dont look like a common Christian girl others talked about would look like? or my name din’t sound straight out of Shakespear? or did you suddenly realiazse im as normal as any one you? I proudly answered everyone by saying
    ‘yes, i’m very much a Chritsian’. A few people i noticed had almost stopped talking to me after that play while i noticed others who appreciate me for my role till date. So, i would say its not everyone who looks down at minorities but i would say there are MANY who do so and should NOT.
    I’m Mariyah David Khan and i am a Pakistani. No matter what anyone anywhere thinks or says.Recommend

  • Akhtar Khan

    The situation in Pakistan is terrible for all those who come in the middle and lower middle class, irrespective of religion. This is all because of our leadership, and those who have become elite through smuggling, bhatta khoree (minor extortion), stealing and dacoity, major extortion through kidnapping and stealing cars, etc., and most importantly corruption. All these people have wealth, but no education.

    My father migrated from UP and started from scratch. He could not even afford a motor cycle. I went to one of the best schools all because my mother taught and gave tuition. She wanted us to get a good education. All of us walked to the bus stop, about a mile away. And the bus stop at the other end was also a mile from the school. We had about 30 of us in class. A third were from the industrialists, sons of diplomatic core, etc. A third was from the middle class like me, and a third were Christians, Parsis and Hindus. the elite stayed aloof a bit, but I mixed with them to a certain extent. Similarly, I was friendly with the minorities to a certain extent. I was quite friendly with some from my class. So tell me what has changed?

    My siblings and I struggled, and Alhumdo Lillah, we have no issues in society. We pick and choose who we associate with. We pick people according to their nature, not their wealth. The former is the real wealth which will not go away, while the latter is temporary. God gives it to try people, and takes it away when He Wills.Recommend

  • Akhtar Khan

    @C.Roberto: The reason is very simple, the standard of education was better. My mother taught Mathematics in a convent for 22 years. She gave her life teaching the kids, without discrimination. Liaquat Ali Khan’s sons were also her students in the early days. In the evening, she used to go to a Church to teach Urdu to the nuns.

    If there is discrimination, it is because of the jihalat (ignorance) of the person discriminating. Islam does not allow us to discriminate. We can eat your food, marry your women. We must not say anything about your religion. But, we can do dawa’ which according to our sincere beliefs is for your good.Recommend

  • Michael

    I’m English and a Christian.
    I would like to say that I’m extremely concerned with the animosity shown between members of different religions and I have a theory that these differences are being promoted by those who have no true religious beliefs at all. What truly religious person could for one moment could believe that it’s OK to disrespect or chastise those of a different religion. Is that written in the Koran or in the Bible, of course not.

    You can see it here in the UK, the rise of the right wing, and an increase in “Islamophobia” and it’s being magnified by the current recession causing people to try and find someone to blame. The first target as always is the immigrant or those with a different ethnic background, I’m sure it’s the same in Pakistan.

    When it comes to Islam, be aware that there are also people promoting inter-sect hostility between Shia & Sunni , divide and conquer is the name of their game
    .
    Stay cool and learn to love each other, we are all brothers & Sisters, there’s only one God Recommend

  • Hassan R. Qizilbash

    Dear Sister,
    Let me take this opportunity to apologize for all the atrocities that are committed in the name of Islam on the followers of other religions.
    You are correct in your statement that the Prophet of Islam never made any discrimination between the people on basis of religion. He helped everyone who was in need. The problem of the Muslims of today is that while they are educated, they do not take time out to study the Quran and learn about their religion themselves. They would rather delegate this work to an un-educated Mulla who has learned to recite the Quran, and follow everything he says, without bothering to check whether it is true or not. If I can be of any help, please do not hesitate to contact me and I shall try to be like a true Muslim and help you as much as I can.Recommend

  • Junaid

    Dear disappointed

    As a Pakistani I am ashamed and apologize to you for what you had to go through. True Islam or true Muslim is different from some of the so called elites or fanatics who mistreated you. In my experience majority of Muslims and Pakistani are tolerant people but some minority members are more vocal and active, which causes problems for many. I hope you will forgive us and not hate Islam or Pakistan because of minority.Recommend

  • Akhtar Khan

    @Michael: Thank you for a very nice post. I couldn’t agree with you more. All religions teach humanity, and love for each other, except one that I will not name. Their entire beliefs are based on hatred, creating false history and blaming everybody for what they perceive as having gone wrong.

    Yes, we are all from the same parents, Adam and Eve, and were created by the same God to be His vicegerents on this earth. Recommend

  • Akhtar Khan

    @A Shia: Why are you taught to curse everybody? In college my three best friends were shia. I used to have long discussions with them, but never knew the real beliefs of the staunch shia until about 10 years ago.

    Recommend

  • S M Hasan

    @Stewie Griffin:
    I am an old man. Have lived in a society where I had Hindus, Christians, Sikhs and Parsis as friends with whom we shared their festivities and grief. It pains me deeply to see the society with growing hatred. It is not MUSLIMS who express their dislike or hate………it is a small “segment” amongst Muslims who consider everyone and everything WRONG and worthy of elimination which does not conform to their interpretation of religion. Most unfortunately this mentality is creeping in amongst many educated and highly placed persons. I am really at a loss to see what is the solution of this cancer. I can only pray and sympathise.Recommend

  • ProFreedom

    These comments that say “I disagree” don’t make any sense. How can you disagree with someone who is telling their story? You haven’t walked in their shoes ! This is what is wrong with the country. I am a Canadian born to two Pakistani Christian parents and yes, both of my parents grew up with Muslim friends (side note: some -not all- of you decided to capitalize “Muslim” but not “Christian” which emphasize the bias in your statements) and my parents didn’t face prejudice. I know that It wasn’t that way for all of the Christians in Pakistan though. Some of my best friends are Muslims. Real Muslims, not fanatics or extremists who are not judgemental and some of my best friends are Hindu as well. There is a way we can all live together in this world. When something is wrong you shouldn’t just roll over and take it.
    @ Sick Of This Nonsense I’m glad you don’t care about what one’s religion is and it seems you view people all the same which is amazing…now if you could just take that open-mindedness one step further and trace back to your statement “Intolerance is everywhere you just have to suck it up like we muslims are doing when we are pointed out in airports and looked with fear in airplanes.” HOW DO YOU THINK THE REST OF WORLD LOOKS AT US?!?!?! Canadians and Americans automatically assume I am Middle-Eastern and therefore, Muslim, and therefore a “terrorist” . They don’t know Pakistanis can be Christian. So the way you feel like a minority in the airport we feel it all the time, even in our own country! The last few times I went back to Pakistan we were even afraid to go to Sunday mass at church! No one should ever feel that way for just practicing their faith. Recommend

  • Praveen

    @abdul moeez: What abt me dear. I am not people of book but from a religion which has given Yoga, meditation, Ayurveda, Zero of mathematics. Would u eat with me or I am not human enough?Recommend

  • GibranA

    If I knew her I would not only have a lunch with her but also eat from the same plate. Eating with non Muslim is NOT haram. Pakistan is packed with uneducated people. These misinformed people are doing everything quite the opposite of what Islam teaches.

    There is more Islam in western counties than Pakistan.

    I hope this girl finds peace in her life. Recommend

  • Sarah Saadiq
  • Durray

    I can very well understand. I am not even a non-Muslim and I have been called kafir, because I am from a minority sect.Recommend

  • isaak

    Thats tragic, things like these do happen. I can feel your pain. I am really sorry that happens to anyone in Pakistan. You just need to be brave to come out of it. Just a concern, few of your statements won’t make sense. I apologize on the behalf of all the Pakistani Muslims. Stay here this is going to be a good place to live in future. I bet my children won’t hurt nobody’s feeling due to difference in faith. Recommend

  • Sad but True

    we as a nation are going through a crisis and a catharsis right now.i completely sympathise with you but it’s also a fact that in injustice and myopic vision is the name of the game in the land of pure right now and anybody with a shred of decency left in them is feeling the heat,you probably feel it more than the others because unfortunately being different is frowned upon.

    i have had a very privileged upbringing and you could say that i am an insider to the workings of the elite class of this country but to be honest but after all these years i have realized that it’s not a privilege any more but a great burden instead and i have certainly understood that it’s not the place for my kids to grow up.

    we as a nation are a story of have nots.i would always love Pakistan for it has also produced gems like your father and so many other unsung hero’s but there comes a time when enough is enough. our only hope besides God is now imran khan.( i pray for his security for they(?) will certainly try to bring him down)

    may God have mercy on our innocent people

    Education is what we need for the common man.Recommend

  • Bilal

    Perhaps you should not pity yourselves, pity this nation.Recommend

  • Zawar

    Well, i may not agree with your points. I remember one of my university classmates in Pakistan was a christian girl and she also studied in Convent school. We are still very friends and she is passing her married life in UK now. While four years in university, i have never seen any discrimination to her due to her religion, even we friends had never thought of her as some thing different from usRecommend

  • Ayesha Mallick

    Hi Cynthia,
    I have also studied from a convent school, St. Josephs to be exact, during the 125 years of school celebration we went into the church as part of a procession and lit candles, we sat together and ate, although I did not have any christian friends but many girls did and are still friends with them. I think this is an isolated event. It has nothing to do with your religion it is part of a social set up in many places where minorities ethnic or religious are scared of the majorities, and they are afraid to mingle. One thing is that because most of the household help or street cleaners in Karachi are hindus or christians from Punjab maybe some people from the ‘elite’ class think that all are same and treat all christians that way. Another thing is that it is odd that this incident happened in a ‘convent’ school, where a christian is more likely to be heard , why didn’t you complain to a teacher?Recommend

  • Karl

    Hi,
    I aree to what you have said to an extent. I grew up studying in St. Patricks High School which being a top convent school for boys has more muslims than christian students. I never faced these situation which you have mentioned by any of my educated friends. I think the problem of religious discrimination is due to the lack of education in our society. In Karachi it is not very difficult but I have experienced these things while visiting other parts of the country. In Lahore once me and my cousins were refused service at a restaurant due to being Christians and although there were many onlookers who looked upon us with sympathy, none intervened. Once someone made a remark at me that you should be thankful to God that you were born in a educated and well off family otherwise you like other Christians would be working as janitors or in the municipality. I was amused at this remark and answered that I would not be ashamed working as a janitor, sweeper or anything as I would be earning my living but you should be thankful to your God as is you had been born in a poor family, would be on the streets begging. I know that it was not wise of me to say that but it is a fact that christians do not resort to begging no matter how hard things maybe. The friend who had made that comment was extremely ashamed and apologised for his comment after hearing what I had said. He later said that in a way I was correct. My family is settled in London from the last twelve years but I migrated here last year after much convincing and emotional blackmail from my family. I never wanted to leave Pakistan as I have considered it my mother nation and will continue to do so wherever I live.
    Further still I still hope that changing the mindset of these extremest few is only possible if we educate them. We should look into the fact that this kind of extremist behaviour is leading us nowhere and due to this behaviour by a few, Islam is getting the blame around the world. I don’t think any muslims had problems due to their religion on any international airport or country before 9/11. This extremist behaviour is intolerable and if not stopped will lead the nation to doom.Recommend