Our New Media Muftis

Jan 20th, 2011 | By | Category: The News

Nevermind that militants have begun using young girls as suicide bombers to kill innocent Muslims, or the fact that lawyers – the very people who are supposed to uphold the laws of the country – are making the most curious arguments to protect a man who admits to cold-blooded murder. No, the biggest problem with straying from true Islam is…corruption. At least, that’s according to Alam Rind in The News on Thursday.

It should be noted that Alam’s article was published on page 5 in the National section of the newspaper and not on page 6 or 7 with the other opinion columns. It should also be noted that the article was labeled ‘Comment’. But I think ‘comment’ sells short what we have here, which is clearly more than that – what we have here is a Fatwa from a Media Mufti.

Here is how Alam describes the problem:

A dispassionate scrutiny of the whole situation reveals that the menace isn’t confined to governmental departments alone, rather the whole society has been infected. In fact, it has become our way of life. Our political and bureaucratic offices are infested with abuses like nepotism, embezzlement, bribery, extortion, influence peddling, and fraud.

These foul practices are posing developmental challenge, undermining democracy and hampering accountability. Corruption in judicial system has eroded the rule of law, weakened the institutions and undermined social and cultural values. It has impeded economic development, enhanced inefficiency and cost of doing business. In the presence of all these vices, there is no wonder that we listen of corruption scandals every now and then. Certainly, it has eaten up the country like termite.

Also let’s not ignore the sector which our anti-corruption crusaders in the media seem to always forget to mention: journalism. Salman Siddiqui broke the silence on this very topic last week in a post for Express Tribune’s blog, and let me tell you I heard more than one voice expressing dissatisfaction with Salman’s letting the cat out of the bag.

And clearly it is corruption that is responsible for the crumbling economy and not the refusal of anyone to pay taxes or the fact that investors avoid any country where they may at any moment be blown to bits by a jihadi on his way to meet his houris. It must be corruption because that’s what he hear from the media each and every day.

It must also be corruption is why India, Asia’s fourth largest exporter of illicit capital to the tune of $104 billion between 2000 and 2008, has a failing economy.

But, wait a minute. For 2011, India expects GDP growth of 8.5 percent and declining inflation. How can that be if corruption is responsible for all of societies ills?

But this is to ignore Alam’s point.

Honesty, contentment and social justice have given way to corruption, cruelty and lust. We are no more practicing one of the most emphasized injunctions of Islam that is to call people to righteous deeds and stop them from evil doing. We need to revisit our socio-religious structure because there is a definite increase in the number of mosques and those who regularly visit these for prayers but Islamic teaching like honesty, truthfulness, trustworthiness, balance in life, contentedness etc. aren’t visible in our society.

Obviously, there is a need to revitalise our beliefs that can only be done through enlightening education. A balanced education that makes us understand the Islamic principles rather than enslaving us of western philosophies holds key to our mental and material development. But let me remind you that there is no quick fix for such a grave problem. It is going to be a long drawn war, which can only be won through collective efforts of the people and government.

Pakistan was ranked number 143 on the Transparency International Corruption Perception Index for 2010. As Alam says, this must be because we have strayed from the true path of Islam. Yes, India did rank better than Pakistan on the corruption index, but that must be because of a Hindu-Zionist conspiracy. I’ll have to check with Mullah Zaid Hamid for some hadiths on that issue. In the meantime, let’s set India aside and look at the top 10 countries with the least corruption:

  • Denmark
  • New Zealand
  • Singapore
  • Finland
  • Sweden
  • Canada
  • Netherlands
  • Australia
  • Switzerland
  • Norway

MashAllah. If there are is any nation more Islamic than these I cannot think of them. Clearly it is as Alam says:

A balanced education that makes us understand the Islamic principles rather than enslaving us of western philosophies holds key to our mental and material development.

Alam laments that “there is no quick fix for such a grave problem”. But I would say it is clear that the solution has already begun by the founding of Mawlana Syed Abul A’ala Maududi School of Journalism and its star pupils Alam Rind, Ansar Abbasi, Talat Hussain and Meher Bokhari.

These Media Muftis continue to remind us of those grave sins that are causing our country to decline such as fashion shows, foreign movie stars providing humanitarian relief, and political leaders requesting justice for minorities. Now, thanks to the Mawlana Syed Abul A’ala Maududi School of Journalism’s latest graduate Alam Rind, we also know how to get rid of corruption – rejecting the slavery of the West and embracing such pinnacles of morality and virtue like Baitullah Mehsud and Mumtaz Qadri.

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  1. i hear rumors that pakistani government, military and intelligence services pay certain journalists and columnists to write positive stories about them when they are patently untrue. how widespread is this practice?

    and how do we discern the honest journalists from the crooked ones?

  2. Unfortunately, paying journalists to write stories is a problem. I should say that if the government is paying journalists to write positive stories about them, though, they need to ask for a refund! How we discern the honest journalists from the crooked ones is by paying attention to whether they are writing about facts only or inserting their opinion also. Are they making predictions that never come true? Reporting rumours told by anonymous and mysterious ‘sources’ or do they have actual evidence for their stories.

  3. admin wrote: “I should say that if the government is paying journalists to write positive stories about them, though, they need to ask for a refund!”

    ha ha priceless. Love this site. Anyway to send you email?

  4. […] posted here: Our New Media Muftis | Pakistan Media Watch This entry was posted in Media and tagged always-forget, anti, express, express-tribune, […]

  5. I think needless criticism of Alam Rind’s article has been made here. I haven’t read the entire article but from what has been posted above Rind doesn’t seem to be making political statements but rather general observations about our society.

    I agree with him that corruption, dishonesty are among the major reasons holding us back as a nation.

    PMW seems to be worked up on any mention of corruption because they automatically assume it is a criticism of the incumbent government.

    Corruption is a major & a very genuine problem facing our society & it is holding us back. And it didn’t start with the PPP’s rule & neither will end with it. PPP & its ministers are just a reflection of our society. Every one of us – almost everyone – will flaunt the law if we can get away with it.

    I think PMW should be fair in its comments instead of being dismissive & sounding as if corruption is not a problem at all. That few people pay taxes & there is no law & order are also reflections of corruption & dishonesty in our society & the lack of accountability of our rulers.

  6. Dear AHK,

    Thank sincerely you for your comment. Our concern with Alam’s article was not really about corruption as the subject but his suggestion that corruption is due to a lack of religious purity in society. As you correctly note corruption is not caused by PPP or any other party and neither is the present government the root of the problem. Corruption can be found throughout the society from paying some small bribe to the police to paying extra for tuition and many other small situations that the people face. But there is no evidence that this is due to a lack of religious sentimentality or religious purity in the nation. My sincere apologies if it seemed that we were dismissing corruption as not a problem at all. Certainly it is. But we believe such issues should be reported with facts and evidence not with religious appeals by a reporter. We hope that you will continue to read the blog and we will continue working to improve. Thank you again for your very much appreciated comments and we will certainly take it as advice for future posts.

    Kindest regards,

  7. The real threat we have with people who have beard in their stomach like Kamran Shahid.

  8. Gift from “Ghazi Mumtaz Hussain Qadri” to Pakistani Muslims
    Sunni Tehreek demolishes Masjid & Commit Blasphemy

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