Month: May 2017

Our attitude as Pakistani and Indian expatriates in Australia

Pak-India flags

When I migrated to Australia permanently in 2010 I decided to make this beautiful country my home. I taught my daughters that Australia is our home and we should feel proud on being residents of such a beautiful and developed country. However later I realised that unfortunately many Australian citizens who were born in India still show their hatred towards Pakistani born Australians. Few good people fighting against this negative attitude are Ejaz Khan, Zahid Minhas(serving the community through Radio Dosti program for last 20 years), Balbir Singh, Maqsood Nagi, Shagufta Zia, Rekha Maharaj Vikas Paul and Lucky Singh. I also try to promote friendship between Pakistani and Indian born Australians wherever possible.

Recently Sydney saw a sad incident that affected these efforts badly. Indian film awards show IFFAA was being organised here in which renowned Pakistani artists were also invited by the organisers. Tickets were selling very fast and Subcontinent community was eagerly waiting for the date of event. All of a sudden the event got cancelled. Initially the organisers informed that due to tensions between India and Pakistan, the Pakistani artists would not be participating in the event, and later they cancelled the whole event. Vikas Paul was one of the main organisers. He told later that he and other organisers received threats from RSS (Indian extremist religious group) members in Australia that they would not let it happen and would attack Indian celebrities in their own country who were participating in the event. On their pressure management decided to drop Pakistani artists initially and later cancelled the whole event.

It’s not something new. India has got more extremists than Pakistan has. In Pakistan religious vote makes 2.5% of the total votes cast, whereas in India RSS supported BJP got 60% of the total cast votes in their last polls.

I would like to request my Australian friends from India and Pakistan to take each other as Australians, not Indian or Pakistani. We much promote love and respect for each other so that we could create a better environment here. Anyone who promotes hatred must be left alone.

Advance Australia Fair

Pakistan Zindabad – Jay Hind

Malaysia – A peaceful and model Islamic state

After spending almost one week in Kuala Lumpur I can say without any doubt that Malaysia presents a wonderful image of Islam to its visitors from world over. I visited my Pakistani friend Khurram in a town Tronoh where you get amazed to see a newly established beautiful university UTP (University of Technology Petronas). Khurram and his loving wife both are doing there PhDs from the same university and have been living in Malaysia for more than five years.

Khurram told me that there are three main races living in Malaysia; Malay who are Muslims make 55% of the total population, Chinese (mostly Budhists) and Tamil Indians (Hindus). He added that Malaysian Muslims feel proud of their religion and their girls always wear Hijab to show their identity. Malaysian government is liberal and provides religious freedom to everyone living here. There is no street mosque in the Malaysia like Pakistan and other subcontinent countries, but you will find only large Mosques located on different parts of cities. Call for the Islamic prayer, i.e. Azaan is not read loud using the loudspeakers from these mosques, but only the prominent mosques are allowed to use the loudspeakers for this purpose.

Khurram also told me that also liquor is sold at the bars and hotels openly but Malaysian Muslims are not allowed to drink and Police take strict action if a local Muslim is found drinking or doing any major religiously prohibited act. Both Muslims and non-Muslims staff are found at the airports, railway stations, hotels and shopping centres. Kuala Lumpur is a beautiful and very developed city. It has modern transport system. Trains, monorail, busses, taxis and Uber are cheaper and easily accessible. There is a state owned free bus service GoKL that runs four routs which take you to important attractions of the city. People are very friendly and polite and most of them understand English. I loved visiting Malaysia and found it cheaper and better than Dubai and Abu Dhabi. I recommend all my Pakistani and Australian friends to visit Malaysia if they want to enjoy an affordable holiday excursion.