The leader of Pakistan’s Jamat-e-Islami political party, Senator Siraj ul Haq, has said that non-Muslims should not be referred to as minorities or put into an inferiority complex. Senator ul Haq, who has led the Islamist party since March 2014, made his comments at an event to mark the completion of the Diocese of Peshawar’s peace and harmony project. “We are all Pakistanis, irrespective of creed, colour or ethnicity,” he said. “I strongly feel and urge that we should not call non-Muslim Pakistanis as minority. We are one Pakistani Nation. Therefore [we] should not put any non-Muslim Pakistani into inferiority complex”.
The Diocese of Peshawar’s two year project to promote peace and harmony through interfaith networking in the Bannu, Dera Ismail Khan, Mardan, Swat and Peshawar districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province was sponsored and supported by World Relief Germany. During the programme, the diocese appointed peace-building officers who worked with security forces, political and religious leaders, local volunteers and civic administration to promote interaction between various faith communities to strengthen friendship ties and the acceptability for peaceful co-existence.
“These efforts produced and promoted a culture based on mutual respect, dignity, tolerance and interfaith harmony,” the Diocese said in its Frontier News magazine.
The Project’s closing ceremony was held at the Pearl Continental Hotel in Peshawar, attended by 120 guests, including religious leaders of various faiths, and Senator Siraj ul Haq, who was the chief guest.
Senator ul Haq said that he “highly appreciated” the peace building efforts of the diocese and its partners.
The Bishop of Peshawar, Church of Pakistan Moderator Humphrey Peters, congratulated those involved in the project “for a job well done.”