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  • Author: Maryam Azam
  • Publication Date: 07-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: South Asian Studies
  • Institution: Department of Political Science, University of the Punjab
  • Abstract: The rise of sectarian groups in Pakistan has sprouted many internal challenges for the state as well as for the society. The issue of sectarianism is directly linked with the security and harmony of Pakistani society as it has culminated into a grave internal security challenge causing violence and loss of human life. The institutionalization of these groups and their role in the political landscape of Pakistan reflects their complicated nature, objectives and the overall discourse on which these groups are built. Despite the fact that government in various time periods have banned these sectarian militant groups but they were able to operate in shadows or under the banner of different names and roles. This piece of research aims to explicate their multidimensional roles and their capacity to operate and affect the security paradox as well as society as a whole
  • Topic: Security, Islam, Religion, Sectarianism, Sectarian violence, Violent Extremism
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, South Asia, Punjab
  • Author: Shamaila Hamid
  • Publication Date: 07-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: South Asian Studies
  • Institution: Department of Political Science, University of the Punjab
  • Abstract: This article focuses on the gap that exists among the genders as a result of political socialization in the Christian religious minority within Punjab, Pakistan. A study in this regard was carried out in four major districts of Punjab namely Lahore, Faisalabad, Gujranwala and Rawalpindi. A sample of 400 was surveyed during Dec 2017-Jan 2018. The data were collected using multi stage sampling. The results of the study indicated that gender plays an important role in voting behavior. There is a huge difference in political awareness of men and women. Men are more politically aware and their level of knowledge surpasses that of women from their community. Where men are more independent in their decision making regarding whom to vote or not to vote, women are largely dependent on males of family in forming their political decisions.
  • Topic: Gender Issues, Politics, Religion, Minorities, Elections, Christianity
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, South Asia, Punjab
  • Author: Usman Bashir, Iram Khalid
  • Publication Date: 01-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: South Asian Studies
  • Institution: Department of Political Science, University of the Punjab
  • Abstract: This study is focused on the impact of religion on the electoral pattern of the people of Punjab. Religion as a determinant of voting behavior is best expressed in the votes secured by the religious parties. Thus, religious parties vote in Pakistan and Punjab is studied to build an argument. Religion has a strong impact on human life. It influences each act and attitude of the individual especially in developing countries. In Pakistan; religion has a solid affect in shaping the political attitudes and beliefs of the individuals. It is one of the key elements of politics.2018 general elections saw a sudden rise in the vote bank of religious political parties. It witnessed a 2.17 % increase in the religious vote country wide and 1.32% increase in Punjab. Tahreek Labbaik Pakistan appeared on the scene as a radical Sunni Islamic party, it mobilized the barelvi vote bank to great effect. And it emerged as the third largest party of Punjab, in terms of votes polled. 2018 general elections also witnessed the rise of Milli Muslim League which was a political wing of Jamaat-ud-Dawa, who were previously rejecting the parliamentary form of government and were critical of voting in elections. The increase in the influence of the various spiritual gaddi nasheen in the electoral politics of Punjab was also a prominent factor during the 11th general election.
  • Topic: Islam, Politics, Religion, Elections
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, South Asia, Punjab
  • Author: Ammara Tabassum, Umbreen Javaid
  • Publication Date: 01-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: South Asian Studies
  • Institution: Department of Political Science, University of the Punjab
  • Abstract: St. Thomas, one of the twelve disciples of Jesus Christ, came to India by ship following the sea routes. While some historians also believe that St. Thomas came to India by crossing Asia Minor West Taxila, north Thatta, and afterwards, he settled in India. There is a consensus among historians that St. Thomas first reached Taxila which was then ruled by a Buddhist king, Gonophores. All of the historians relate the meeting of St. Thomas met with Gonophores. According to the current historical publications, it was in the 3rd century when Christians reached India and settled in the North West and they were called Thomai or Christians of St. Thomas while they are named as Thomai in the present day. In 72 A.D Hindu Brahmins martyred St. Thomas in Mylapore and now the Shrine of St. Thomas is situated in Chennai, India. Thousands of people come to Chennai and visit his shrine. The shrine of St. Thomas is the evidence of Christian presence in India in the 1st century. A king, Kanishka, attacked Taxila; he plundered, devastated and robbed the people, causing ruin. This forced the early Christian settlers to disperse and migrate towards Northern Punjab and Central India. Though Mughal Empire governed the Subcontinent for 200 years yet in this long period they were unable to affect the Hinduism and Christianity. Islam is considered as minority during the period of Mughal Empire. During the period of Mughal Empire some Muslim Emperor forced the Punjabi Christians to enter the fold of Islam and many Christians accepted Islam and those who did not, were targeted and scattered
  • Topic: Religion, History, Christianity, Catholic Church
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, South Asia, India, Punjab
  • Author: Khalid Manzoor Butt, Naeema Siddiqui
  • Publication Date: 07-2018
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: South Asian Studies
  • Institution: Department of Political Science, University of the Punjab
  • Abstract: The word 'Islamic Republic' is debatable among scholars as what meaning and role the word 'Islam' adds to the republic is still not agreed upon. Therefore, there is a need for resolving this ambiguity by explicitly defining and explaining the meaning and role of Islam in an Islamic Republic. Pakistan, too, is an Islamic Republic, which got the name 'Islamic Republic of Pakistan' for the first time in the constitution of 1956. This study intends to comprehend the mentioned issue by highlighting the similarities and differences between democracy and Islamic system of governance. In this qualitative study, iterative analysis of semi-structured interviews of ten doctorate scholars is carried out. The study comes across primary contradictions between the two systems and gives a way out for a system having characteristics of both Islam and democracy.
  • Topic: Human Rights, Islam, Religion, History, Governance, Democracy, State
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, South Asia, Punjab
  • Author: Abdul Majid
  • Publication Date: 01-2017
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: South Asian Studies
  • Institution: Department of Political Science, University of the Punjab
  • Abstract: India adopted a democratic parliamentary constitution in January 1950. This constitution enumerates all fundamental civil and political rights irrespective of religion, caste, language or region. However, in practice these rights are denied to religious minorities and low caste and out caste Hindus called Dalits. The Muslims being the largest religious minority have faced more discrimination than any other minority. Their religious cultural identity has been under pressure and they are underrepresented in the parliament or state assembly. The rise of Hindu revivalist movements under the BJP has made the Muslims more vulnerable to Hindu extremism and intolerance. Pakistan has raised the issue of India’s atrocities in Kashmiri at the international level. It supports the Kashmiri struggle for political and civil rights and their right to decide on their own about their political future. The UN and the international community must restrain India from resorting to “state terrorism in Kashmir”.
  • Topic: Human Rights, Religion, United Nations, Territorial Disputes, Self Determination
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, South Asia, India, Punjab, Jammu and Kashmir
  • Author: Ahmed Usman
  • Publication Date: 01-2017
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: South Asian Studies
  • Institution: Department of Political Science, University of the Punjab
  • Abstract: Caste system is an essential feature of both Hindu and Muslim societies in the sub-continent. This paper compares the dynamics of traditional caste system practiced across Hindus and Muslims of India and Pakistan respectively. Birth-ascribed statuses, definite occupations, hierarchical positioning of caste groups and endogamous form of marriage are found to be the common characteristics of caste system practiced across Indian Hindus and Pakistani Muslims. In the Hindu caste system, membership in a Jati determines the rules and regulations regarding food and touch ability for the members through socio-religious rituals of purity and impurity. In contrast the notions and rituals of pure and impure are virtually absent in Muslim Pakistan. Caste system in both India and Pakistan is decaying with time because of the increasingly urbanization. However, geographical isolation and long established social structures in rural India and Pakistan are the favorable conditions that uphold the caste practices.
  • Topic: Religion, Culture, Urbanization, Inequality
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, South Asia, India, Punjab
  • Author: Shagufta Bano, Muhammad Sohail, Syed Shahbaz Hussain
  • Publication Date: 01-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: South Asian Studies
  • Institution: Department of Political Science, University of the Punjab
  • Abstract: Sufis are the spiritual guides who aspire for closer union with God. Islam is an exterior edifice in which an entity subsists, whilst the inner exploration for enlightenment belongs to an ambit of Sufi realization. The Sufi approach endeavors to mend a human demeanor and to open up human vistas to the sublime amity that comes from propinquity to God. Sufism is a devotional and spiritual current in the Islamic history. Sufism enlightens society to abstain from spitefulness, barbarianism, bigotry, sadism and discrepancy. Now it has been subject matter to the strain of modernization experienced across the Muslim world and people are faced with terrorism on its peak. The present-day approach of sadism and belligerence calls for a good propel for the message of Sufi Diaspora for the alteration of traumatized mental approach of the populace. The conflict ridden people really have a pursuit for peace. Sufi ideas generously contribute to the harmony and relief. Islam is a great and splendid religion now has become maligned due to atrocities of ‘Jehadis’ in the label of religion. Fundamentalism has amended the motif and spirit of Islam. Pakistan as a soil of Sufis, longs for serenity and harmony. Sufis are the people who believe in tolerance, love and well being of all humanity. It is necessary to follow the doctrine of Sufism in the world of turmoil and tribulations and to address the most serious issues like lack of interfaith harmony, terrorism, exploitation in Pakistan. The intention of this study is to explore the role of major Sufi saints in Sub-continent for preaching religion on the instructions of their sacred mentors and people have faith on Sufi Saints.
  • Topic: Islam, Religion, Taliban, Violent Extremism, Sufism
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, South Asia, Punjab