By Ahsaan ul Haq
Preaching and practicing love, openly, was the first and the biggest fault of Charanjeet Singh. His love was not only limited to his own community but for entire humanity. Charanjeet chose to spread love. He might be unaware of the fact that in our society only hatred can be preached openly but not love, love here is bound to remain a secret. If he would have preached hatred, if he would have preached violence he would have received attention of millions. If he would have blocked roads, if he would have conducted terrorist activities, the government would have given him proper security with other living facilities. But Alas…! He had opted love instead of hatred, he had chosen peace instead of violence that was his biggest fault and that is the reason he went unnoticed and lost his life in a daylight and his killer went unnoticed too.
Instead of spending aimless life, he came out of his comfort zone and devoted his life to spread harmony among different communities.
Charanjeet became an advocate for religious pluralism. He set an example for others by carrying out activities such as arranging Iftar for Muslim communities of Peshawar throughout Ramazan, attending various sessions with other communities particularly youth and educating them about dialogues and peace and promoting civil ethics among the Sikh community.
In doing all these, he perhaps forgot Amjad Sabri, the renowned artist of Pakistan from Karachi who was brutally killed in the same month of Ramazan two years back for being involved in similar activities. Charanjeet perhaps forgot that being a member of minority, he was not supposed to perform such activities, he was not supposed to preach accommodation, dialogue and coexistence. He perhaps forgot that he was living in Pakistan “the land of pure’’, where only Muslims are considered as pure. He perhaps ignored the fact that, unfortunately, he was not among the pure and his idea of inclusion of different religious communities would be a threat to the “purity of the pure community”.
His third biggest fault was his unconditional love for Pakistan. Though, more than five million of his community members have migrated to India since Independence, he preferred to stay in Pakistan. He preached patriotism in his community and encouraged them to play their role for the well being of this nation.
If he would have migrated to some other country he would be alive today, he would be spending a respectable life, but he stayed here for which he had to lose his life. Charanjeet might not have read the history of this State; this is the State that has never owned its minorities and has always been unkind towards them.
We are sorry Charanjeet Gee…! We are Sorry….!
(The writer is student of International Relations at Quaid-e-Azam University Islamabad).