01 Feb 18/Thursday: Today, the penetration of internet and reach of social media stands at more than 35 million users in Pakistan. With more than 20% internet growth registered per year, it is about time that we, the citizens of Pakistan, join our voices and silent contributions to counter extremism on the internet and social media platforms. “Surfsafe” a new website launched yesterday is yet another step in this direction and as citizens of Pakistan, we must contribute in curbing this evil which has left many of us scarred.
Are Cyber Counter measures like Surfsafe an eyewash ?
However, when our government speaks of such measures my mind is actually confused. On one hand, we are speaking of reporting cyber terror and on the other, our own government agencies are enticing, propagating hate among us. Many of us probably may not be aware of various bans existing under our cyber law. But it is heartening to see our own agencies civil and defense ruthlessly flouting these laws and fooling us by initiating numerous such eyewash measures like “Surfsafe”.
What does the law say ? Ban on Hate speech (Sectarian/ Racial)- Preparation and Dissemination (Section 11, Prevention of Electronic Crimes Act, 2016), Ban on programs and advertisement whose content contains or encourages terrorism (Section 20-C PEMRA Ordinance 2002) and so on..
Truth is that on everyday basis our own clerics and leaders spew venom and preach nonsensical stuff to the young minds. Please watch the following videos
http://hdvidzpro.pro/video/hafeez-saeed-hate-speech-against-india going viral in our country. It is hard to believe that such online hate speeches of Jmaat-ud Dawa chief, Hafiz Saeed and likes, which largely contribute to religious violence on an ethno-national issue (Kashmir) are going unnoticed by our cyber agencies.
Our state has virtually ruled out barring Hafiz Saeed (accused of plotting of the Mumbai terror attack of 2008), from giving inflammatory speeches targeting India. In the year, 2010 our Foreign minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi had this to say “In a democracy, there is freedom of expression in Pakistan as in India. There are all sorts of people making all kinds of speeches. There are people with extremist views in both India and Pakistan and there is nothing you can do about it. There are views being expressed in Pakistan that I can do nothing about.”
You will be put to shame seeing the above video where a Muslim cleric glorifies rape, murder and killing. Don’t you think this is the reason why we have dozens of cases of Zainab and Aasma Rani occurring in almost all cities of Pakistan. Don’t you think that what Saba Qamar said in her interview recently, that we Pakistani’s are looked at with suspicion worldwide and is humiliating is actually the doing of our own brothers?
Why Surfsafe when we are ourselves promoting terror online or silencing those who expose the state actors?
If the above is true, then I have the following to ask from all of you.
Why did Dawn (the largest English daily in Pakistan) report that, in the first seven months of 2016, there were 510 reports of the forced disappearance of journalists in Pakistan. According to Amnesty International, the number of such cases is much higher almost 3,000.
Why did Taha Siddiqui, a well known Pakistani journalist ranking among the foremost critics of the country’s powerful military establishment hold a emergency press conference in Islamabad blaming security forces of ordering his abduction which he miraculously escaped?
I had earlier gone through the thread (appears to be generated by own members) of @defence.pk, it appeared to me that the agency was on a mission to ostracize Taha Siddique for speaking his mind. But is he not entitled to do so? After all, he is a journalist, not a criminal.
What is wrong with this tweet? Its a known fact that Pakistan Army is glorifying JuD chief openly for spreading hate against India and he is bribed to keep the Kashmiri pot simmering at the cost of young Pakistani and Kashmiri boys.
If we recollect in December last year, in a youth conference in Quetta, our Pakistan Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa had said, “that madrasas are increasingly being used as a recruiting ground for terrorist groups in Pakistan”. He had said that madrasas had lost their function as a school for teaching religious principles, adding that We need to look (at) and revisit the concept of madrasas, and give them a worldly education.I am not against madrasas, but we have lost the essence of madrassas, the Nation newspaper quoted the general stressing the need to revisit the religious schools concept.
Paid media is a known fact, he has voiced his opinion and exposed the nexus, is that what is hurting few ?
What about ,five social media activists Salman Haider, Waqas Goraya, Aasim Saeed, and Ahmad Raza Naseer went missing from different parts of Pakistan early last year. Also target killings of Hamid Mir (GeO TV),Raza Rumi, Abrar Tanoli etc in the recent past indicate how we are being fooled.
Not surprising though, but it is not difficult to answer why Twitter suspended the verified account of “Pakistan Defence” [@defence.pk]
It is indeed a shame that our Army is covertly operating in this manner. This is not how professional armies fight their adversaries, I am sure you all are with me on the same page.
Twitter revealed that other than running malicious campaigns against several Pakistani journalists/activists, defencepk was also morphing photos to further its propaganda. Twitter handle @defence.pk used a photo shopped image of Kawalpreet Kaur holding a placard reading “I am an Indian but I hate India because India is a colonial entity that has occupied nations such as Nagas, Kashmir, Manipurs, Hyderabad, Junagadh, Sikkim, Mizoram, Goa and tweeted it on November 17 with the caption: “Indians are finally realising the truth; their country is actually a colonialist entity.”
This was also reported and when twitter scanned through the handle it found various objectionable material and therefore suspended the account.
If you remember in the past too, Pakistan Defence Forum has been accused of running malicious campaigns against Pakistani journalists, commentators and activists who have been critical of the powerful military and intelligence agencies.
It is ascertained that the various threads in Pakistan Defence Forum are devoted to discussing issues such as Pakistan’s politics, operations against terrorists, and also problems faced by Muslims around the world. The threads are also replete with the conspiracy theories that often find space in mainstream Pakistani media and discussions about India’s domestic politics.
Look at these fake statistics being circulated by our Army. It shows a decline in fatalities when we as citizens are aware that 1000’s of us are being crucified because of the inability of our lawmakers and caretakers to restore peace and stability in our country. What is happening in Baluchistan under Op Rassad will put such statistics to shame. This fooling around is certainly not acceptable as every native of Pakistan is aware as to whats happening in our country.
All of us need to unmask such tout agencies trying to fool us and providing us with a false sense of security. Do report about all such extremist stuff against our own journalists, politicians or even anti-India, Afghanistan, Iran sentiment which is being propagated for a vested interest harming no other than the Pakistani awam.