Sat. May 8th, 2021

Protest Power


Mujahid Sulaiman

It is an undeniable fact that protest power plays an indispensable role in any society. It is a tool or an agency that works as a crucial antidote to tyranny and barbarism and is employed to shatter the fabric of strong-arm tactics that usurp the rights of people in structural or institutional shape. Policies of those in power go futile when are criticized and protested by a majority unanimously. Moreover, having a cursory look at the epoch making historical events that have changed the entire face of history it reveals that nary a nation could sustain or transformed its socio-political and economic dynamics that lacks the capacity and dynamism of power to protest and wherein revolts break not out. Battling against the god fathers has been a long tradition stretches back generations from “The Peasants’ Revolt” 1381 to ‘The French Revolution 1778-1799 and ‘The Suffragettes’ 1913 are a few to mentioned that have laid the foundation of struggle against social injustice and inequalities. Furthermore, History has witnessed how over the course of time the unanimous raised hue and cry against feudalism, political authoritarianism, and for the removal of monarchism and other structural prejudices have weaken shackles of slavery and  have extended the sphere of  freedom, social justice mere accepting the stance of humanity rather racism and favoritism.

Today in most of societies wherein people are divided into racial, political, and religious grounds have rare social stability and are killing at hands of social injustice and multidimensional corruption. At the current arena, the religio- political division of masses in India, is wreaking havoc on minorities and demonstrates the worst picture of governance on the earth whereby, state is directly or indirectly sponsoring the atrocities of Muslim minority in one or another shape. Most of all they could do nothing for the transparency, social stability, and elimination of evils from their society. Consequently, the whole Indian society badly fallen in perpetual crisis. However, despite this abominable racial fall out, had they been united for the collective betterment of all and sundry they would not have been facing the chaotic conditions now. Similar rifts we see in Pakistan where multiple interest groups protest for their own interests but never stand for the justice of others. In December 2019 JUIF, PPP, PMLN and many other political stake holders demonstrated a series of protests when their sphere was being limited by National Accountability Bureau mere to maintain their monopoly and political hegemony but they never staged protests when a family was killed at hands of Punjab police in District Kasur. Also, nothing happened when Salahudin Ayubi, a man who died in the custody of police, was tortured before he died a day after his arrest. Thousands of others have been killed at the hands of injustice by police and other god fathers. But unfortunately, our societal behavior being anomalous and appalling neither people take to streets nor raise voices when innocent people are killed brutally, harassed, and tortured.

On the other hand, the western societies have transformed much better than they had ever before them seems the concept of accountability and social justice. They have moral courage to stand against the unjust regardless of any religo-racial biasness. The spontaneous protests that erupted and engulfed more than 85 cities across the US, after the brutal killing of George Floyed, an African American man in police custody in Minneapolis. People are defying curfews, blockades, and warnings to express their rage against continued police violence, institutional racism and discrimination against the people other community. In fact, they are fulfilling their responsibilities being responsible citizens.

As a matter of fact, racism and other discrimination shatter the societal power and hamper the forces that oppose hegemons in power robbing and usurping others rights, as a result, the protest forces become weak and masses are overpowered by organized tyrannical forces. Mostly, conditions in non-western countries are horrible sectarian rifts, racial prejudice, cultural bias and low rate of literacy additionally, the poor level of awareness are the main shackles that limit the protest power consequently, the provision of social justice becomes formidable.

The writer is ex-faculty member at karakrom international university. He can be reached at mujahidsalaman88@gmail.com           

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