Saturday, June 15, 2024

The Legendary Tarek Fatah: A Voice for Democracy And Human Rights Is No More

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The world today lost a great personality, Tarek Fatah. He was battling a long term illness and passed away today. Tarek Fatah was a Pakistan-born Canadian author, broadcaster, and liberal activist who has been a vocal critic of Islamic extremism religious fundamentalism. He had been a prominent figure in Pakistan’s struggle for democracy, human rights, and religious freedom.

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Fatah was born in Karachi, Pakistan, in 1949, and grew up in a Muslim family. He started his career as a journalist in Pakistan and worked for several newspapers, including the Karachi Sun and the Pakistan Times. However, his critical views on the military dictatorship and Islamic extremism led to his dismissal from these publications.

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Death Threats And Struggle In Pakistan

In the 1980s, Fatah became involved in the democratic movement in Pakistan and worked alongside other activists to demand an end to military rule and the establishment of a democratic government. He was also a vocal opponent of the Taliban and Al-Qaeda and warned of the dangers of Islamic extremism.

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Fatah’s activism and criticism of the establishment led to threats on his life. He was forced to flee Pakistan in the early 1990s. He moved to Saudi Arabia, where he worked as a journalist for a while but was eventually expelled from the country for his critical views on the Saudi monarchy.

Fatah later settled in Canada, where he continued his activism for democracy and human rights in Pakistan and other Muslim countries. He founded the Muslim Canadian Congress. It advocates for secularism, gender equality, and human rights within Muslim communities.

Advocated For Hinduism

Despite being based in Canada, Fatah remained involved in Pakistan’s struggle for democracy and religious freedom. He used his platform as a writer and commentator to highlight the plight of religious minorities in Pakistan. This included Christians, Hindus, and Ahmadis, who face discrimination and persecution.

Fatah had written and spoken extensively on the topic of Hinduism, its history, and its contributions to India’s culture and society.

Fatah had been critical of the persecution of Hindus in Pakistan and other Muslim-majority countries. He had highlighted instances of forced conversion and discrimination against Hindus and other religious minorities. Fateh called for their protection and recognition of their rights.

In his book “The Jew is Not My Enemy,” Fatah explored the roots of anti-Semitism and other forms of religious intolerance, including the mistreatment of Hindus.

He argued that such attitudes are rooted in a narrow interpretation of Islam. They were a rejection of diversity and pluralism.

Fatah had also praised the contributions of Hinduism to Indian society. He admired the traditions of tolerance, non-violence, and respect for human dignity. Fateh had also emphasised the need for understanding and respect between different faiths and cultures.

Relations With The Jaipur Dialogues

Tarek Fatah had been a regular participant in the Jaipur Dialogues. Fatah had been a frequent speaker at the platform. He shared his insights on topics with Sanjay Dixit. In fact Tarek Fatah was responsible for Sanjay Dixit’s interest in knowing more regarding Islam.

In 2016, Fatah delivered a keynote address at the Jaipur Dialogues, in which he spoke about the need for greater cultural exchange and understanding between India and Pakistan. He emphasised the shared history and cultural heritage of the two countries and called for an end to the hostilities and distrust that have characterised their relationship for many years.

In 2018, Fatah participated in a panel discussion at the Jaipur Dialogues on the topic of “Minorities, Majority, and Secularism in South Asia.” He shared his views on the challenges facing religious minorities in the region and the need for greater protection of their rights and freedoms. He also spoke about the importance of secularism in promoting diversity and pluralism.

Fatah’s participation in the Jaipur Dialogues has been instrumental in promoting greater understanding and dialogue between different communities and cultures. His insights and perspectives on various issues have been widely appreciated and have helped to generate greater awareness and interest in these topics. Let us take forward his work to make a better world!

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