Home Latest News Elements Targeting Minorities are ‘Divorced’ from Pakistani State, Society: P.M. Kakar

Elements Targeting Minorities are ‘Divorced’ from Pakistani State, Society: P.M. Kakar

Addressing first cabinet meeting, caretaker premier emphasizes ensuring punishment for May 9 rioters in accordance with relevant laws

by Staff Report

Caretaker Prime Minister Anwarul Haq Kakar

Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaarul Haq Kakar on Friday reiterated condemnations of the mob violence against churches and Christian homes in Faisalabad’s Jaranwala from earlier this week, stressing that those responsible might be from “us” but are “divorced” from the Pakistani state and society.

“Minorities will stay protected in this country,” he vowed while addressing the first meeting of his federal cabinet after they took oath of office a day earlier. “There may be an attempt to harm them from a section of marginalized and peripheral group of people, but that would be responded sternly and strictly,” he said, stressing the Pakistani state and society do not align with such elements.

“They may be from us but they are divorced from us, they are divorced from our identity process. We do not stand for the forces of darkness,” he said, adding that when a group comprises the majority, it must ensure that any minority is protected. “But not on the basis that they will convert to your world view … their sustenance should be ensured,” he explained.

“There is a rule of law and there is a rule of order. We will ensure that rule of order is not compromised in any way. Rule of order would ensure and lead us to rule of law,” he continued, stressing there was no room for chaos or anarchy in any governance system, secular system or religious theocratic system. “Pakistan is shared by all ethnicities, creed and religious backgrounds,” he emphasized, referring to Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah’s Aug. 11, 1947 speech as the projection of the idea that rights would not be prescribed on the basis of identity.

“There are many dreams around the globe but let’s start having the vision of a Pakistani dream. And let’s realize this Pakistani dream. The Pakistani dream is the dream of our soul. It is imbibed by the ideas of the enlightened Iqbal,” he said, maintaining his government would discourage rigidity in any form.

“We do not stand for the forces of darkness. Rigidity may come in the garb of religion or secularism or any other form. These extreme attitudes, they are not just unwelcome, they will be discouraged,” he said.

Limited time

Acknowledging that the interim government did not have a “perpetual mandate” to govern the nation, he said it was an utmost duty that it used its allocated time to try and ensure fiscal discipline. “We have a sense of sanctity of taxpayers’ money, on which we are having this meeting and consuming this water and tea,” he said, adding the public paid taxes so their government could deliver and provide a secure environment.

Stressing that he was “proud” to have “one of the best teams” in his federal cabinet, he hoped that Allah would enable it to lead and steer the nation during its time in power. The interim government, he claimed, would try to lay foundations in order to have continuation of national and international commitments made by previous governments. “And in continuation of that, we will try to support new initiatives, whatever the law and Constitution allow us to do,” he said, specifically referring to the Special Investment Facilitation Council (SIFC) as a “dream come true” that could help Pakistan economically prosper.

“Hailing from Balochistan, we would take a lot of pride in our natural and mineral resources. But we never knew what those mineral resources were. But the day has arrived, with the support of all institutions—in which the Pakistan military is in the lead—to support, facilitate, encourage and realize this old national dream,” he said.

May 9 riots

In his maiden address to the federal cabinet, the interim prime minister also weighed in on the May 9 riots, stressing that anyone involved in them should be dealt with in line with relevant laws without any favor. “These state symbols, when they are attacked, the state does not disappear or vanish in a day or two or a week. It’s a process and the initiation of that process, or an attempt at least to do so, was exhibited on May 9,” he said.

“We don’t just condemn it, now we are in the role to ensure that justice is being done and whosoever violated the laws on those days will be treated by those laws. There won’t be any favor, there won’t be any fear. We will try to implement with justice and neutrality,” he said, stressing he had been “disappointed” by the incidents.

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