One may presume that Dec 16 massacre of 150 students and their teachers in Peshawar had woken the Pakistani nation to face what’s written on the wall. I believe that our future doesn’t tie with waging jihad against our own people and other nations, but in excelling in education, arts, science and technology to bring back the past glory. Regrettably such a realisation will prove to be short lived and soon the narrative of religious parties and their sectarian outfits will take over the nation to struggle for a utopian empire. We have been fighting religious and sectarian terrorism for decades, but have failed to put forward an alternate narrative to counter the terrorists’ ideology.

Religious parties and their respective seminaries are at full liberty to hammer the general public with ‘going back to basics’ mantra which would solve all their issues. The curriculum in Madrassas cover centuries old tribal practices as an ideal way of life. In absence of any alternate narrative, they are winning on child marriages, enslavement of captured women and children, massacre of captured men, population control, discarding of DNA to prove rapes and the list goes on.

Where are our intellectuals and scholars to counter what religious parties and Madrassas are preaching? Our failure to counter their ideology has already resulted in emergence of Al-Qaeda, Taliban, Al-Shabab, Boko Haram and Islamic State, they all firmly believe in ‘going back to basics’ and proving it well in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Nigeria and elsewhere. Time is running out, otherwise, these monsters will take over the region with the power of their utopian mantra.

MASOOD KHAN,

Saudi Arab, December 30.