LAHORE: Rawadari Tehreek, has demanded the attention of Federal Government, Provincial Government and all other stakeholders to work to remove the challenges to rights and freedoms to Pakistani minorities.

The Chairman of Rawadri Tehreek, in association with National Minority Day, has expressed concern over the dangerous trends of religious discrimination, and violence because of their faith.

He claims, “Socially the Pakistani citizens who belong to minority communities are forced to menial jobs where they are highly discriminated such as sanitary workers, sever-men, domestic servants, brick-kiln workers but nothing concrete has been done to stop discrimination against them and for their uplift."

“The resolve of the issues of minorities are through political process, however this is very unfortunate that power corridors are even without the true and genuine representation of the religious minorities due to ineffective representation at all tier of democratic system of Pakistan including at local government, provincial assemblies and national assembly, because the minority voters are not being asked about their choice for their representation, but rather their representatives are picked up by the political parties” Mr. Samson Salamat added. 

Calling upon the attention of Federal and Provincial Governments, State Institutions, political parties, media and civil society, Rawadari Tehreek has issued the following Charter of Demand for the Protection and Promotion of Minority Rights:

A Preamble of the Constitution of Pakistan should be added including the speech of the Founder of Pakistan on 11th August 1947 to the Constituent Assembly, and should also be added to the curriculum.

Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah during his first address to the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan said “We are all citizens and equal citizens of one state….Now I think we should keep that in front of us as our ideal, and you will find that in course of time Hindus would cease to be Hindus and Muslims would cease to be Muslims, not in the religious sense, because that is the personal faith of each individual, but in the political sense as citizens of the State.”

In consultation with religious minorities and civil society, a Constitutional Reforms Package should be brought to end discrimination and biases against the minorities, and to ensure effective political participation and representation.

Through an Act of Parliament, an Independent Commission on Minorities should be constituted at Federal and Provincial Levels. This Commission should have the powers of a tribunal in the incidents of the violations of minority rights.

Mechanisms should be evolved for the effective Implementation of the Supreme Court Judgment 2014 on the Protection of Minorities.

Laws being used to instigate violence should be reviewed, and prevented from being misused, which has led the destruction of the lives and properties of religious minorities.

An independent Inquiry Commission should be made to assess the issue of forced conversion of the women and girls belonging to religious minorities. The findings of the Commission should be made public and those involved in forced conversion should be apprehended. Moreover a law should be made to ban forced conversion.

An effective De-radicalization plan should be made which should include the ban on hate speech, elimination of biased material from the curriculum, ban and action against all terrorist outfits, their financiers, facilitators and supporters and de-weaponization policy to stop Gun and Bomb Culture.