Hunger Strike- a day of protest against Hate Speech, Extremism and Terrorism

Rwadari Tehreek organized a Token Hunger Strike Camp cum sit-in opposite the Punjab Assembly on 11th February 2016 in front of the Punjab Assembly and demanded that the Government should take measures to stop hate speech, extremism and terrorism in the country according to the National Action Plan. The participants of the hunger strike began their strike at 10:00am and ended at 4:00pm.

The one day Token Hunger Strike Camp in addition to Lahore was also held in various other cities including Multan, Gujranwala, Sargodah, Faisalabad, Sukkur to show unity for the demand. People from different faiths and backgrounds of life joined the protest and demanded for a tolerant society with religious harmony.

 

In Lahore, the Hunger Strike was participated by prominent political, social and religious figures including Mr. Samson Salamat (Chairman Rwadari Tehreek), Mr. Abdullah Malik (President Rwadari Tehreek), Ms. SaeedaDiep (Chairperson Institute for Peace and Secular Studies), Ms. Ghulam Fatima (General Secretary BLLF), Mr. Fazal-e-Wahid (All Pakistan Trade Unions Association), Ms. AmnaUlfat (PML-Q), Ms. ushra Malik (PPP), Ms. AnilaRiaz (PTI), Mr. ShaukatChaudhary (All Pakistan Workers Confederation), PanditBhagatLalKokhar, Mr. AmarnathRandhawa of Hindu Community, Ms. NaheedAdeel (All Pakistan Muslim League).

Prominent members of Rwadari were present including Mr. Naveed Raphael (Joint Secretary), Adoo Ram (Finance Secretary), Ms. AsmatSabira (President Punjab Rwadari Tehreek), Ms. Amna Malik (Member Executive Body),  Ms. AroomaShahzad (General Secretary, Rwadari Tehreek Lahore), Ms. KomalPatras (Secretariat Incharge), Mr . Imran Yousuf, Mr. HabibullahBhatti, Ms. RukhsanaLiaqat, Mr. FazalBhatti.

The participants of the hunger strike belonged to different faiths and walks of life expressed their commitment to resist the extremist, intolerant and violent mindset and to promote the culture where there is respect of all citizens without the religious or any other type of discrimination.

 

Chairman of Rwadari Tehreek Mr. Samson Salamat while addressing the participants of Hunger Strike said that “the fresh wave of terrorism in the beginning of 2016 is a clear indicator that the National Action Plan which was announced in December 2014 has not been implemented seriously which is very unfortunate and a clear failure of Federal, and Provincial Governments and all those who were responsible for the implementation”.  

“Since there have been lapses in the implementation of National Action Plan, therefore the banned terrorist outfits are still operating, and the hate speech and material continue to spoil and fuel the minds of the people with extremist and intolerant thoughts which is unacceptable  and a serious threat to the diverse society of Pakistan” Mr. Samson Salamat added.   

Mr. Samson Salamat demanded that the government must immediately call upon a stake-holders meeting to review the flaws in the implementation of National Action Plan.  Enough is Enough and we want action against all the terrorist outfit without the recognition of good or bad, and also against their financiers and facilitators”.

Central President of Rwadari Tehreek Mr. Abdullah Malik criticized the policies of the Government as it remained failed to apprehend the banned outfits and therefore the lives of the people continue to be in danger at schools, colleges, and universities which is a question mark on the performance of the current government.

Mr. Abdullah Malik said that “as an immediate step the Government should take action against the banned outfits wherever they exist because the Government is duty bound to implement the National Action as it was made through consensus and its matter of the safety and security of the people”.

 

“The government constituted NECTA for the elimination of terrorism and made a strategic policy but unfortunately the Prime Minister never held any meeting to review the policies and even no resources were allocated and given for its smooth functioning. Moreover there have been no reforms in the judicial system to counter terrorism even after one year to the National Action Plan Mr. Malik added.

Mr. Abdullah Malik further said that “as a long term policy government must revise syllabus and eradicate the hate material and announce a comprehensive policy to deweaponize the society and all sorts of weapons must be banned and government must fulfill its constitutional responsibility to provide safety and security to all the citizens”. 

Abdullah Malik also appealed to the citizens to stand united against the terrorists and exercise tolerance and respect towards all faiths and reject all those elements who are spreading hatred.

Following demands were unanimously made by Rwadari Tehreek at the Hunger Strike:

  • Immediate and strict action must be taken against all those who are spreading hatred, intolerance and extremism in the society. 
  • Action should be taken immediately against the banned outfits, their financiers and facilitators 
  • IS (Daesh) presence in the country must be vigilantly watched, especially in Punjab 
  • A comprehensive policy must be formulated to de-weaponize the society and all sort of weapons must be banned immediately to discourage the gun-culture.

MEDIA REPORTS
http://nation.com.pk/featured/12-Feb-2016/enough-is-enough-implement-nap-demands-civil-society (Daily The Nation)
http://www.pakistanchristianpost.com/detail.php?hnewsid=5796  (Pakistan Christian Post)
http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/punjab/12-Feb-2016/token-hunger-strike-camp-civil-society-protests-against-non-implementation-of-nap (Daily Times)
http://www.asianews.it/news-en/Lahore:-activists-from-all-religions-on-hunger-strike-against-terrorism-36680.html (The Asia News)
https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10153494910508576&set=a.448447098575.246399.568518575&type=3&theater  (UK based Paper)
http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/editorial/14-Feb-2016/civil-society-protestDaily Times
https://www.facebook.com/samson.salamat.14 (Press TV)