Recently, a video clip regarding my remarks on the issue of the Madina state went viral on social media, on which I am still receiving massive feedback, positive and negative both.
While a number of people appreciated my bold and realistic stance, some elements from the government circle also showed displeasure. An honourable minister even raised a question about my knowledge on the Madina state.
It is regrettable that my statement about the Madina state was taken out of context and widely used on social media for propaganda purpose.
Being a student of history, I firmly believe that world’s first role model welfare state was established 1400 years ago in Madina and it is still applicable in the modern era, subject to our commitment and dedication. Last year, in my article published on August 25, 2018 in The News International, I mentioned that: “The slogan of Naya Pakistan has effectively won the trust of the people. But it is time to move one step forward to transform Pakistan into a welfare state. For this purpose, it is necessary to analyse the salient features of Madina.”
The state of Madina is known for protecting the rights of vulnerable communities, and it is the state’s primary responsibility to provide civic rights on an equal basis. To ensure internal integrity and safeguard Madina from external threats, the Charter of Madina was signed between Muslim and non-Muslim citizens. According to this peace agreement, the territory of Madina was declared as a unit and it was every citizen’s responsibility to safeguard. It was mutually agreed that in case of any external aggression, all citizens, regardless of religious affiliations, would jointly defend the homeland.
The state of Madina also focused on character building of its citizens on strong moral grounds. Everyone was required to show tolerance and respect to others, and no foul language was allowed. Similarly, high qualities related to good citizenship, rule of law, justice, responsibility, fairness and trustworthiness were also promoted. When a woman belonging to an influential elite family committed a crime, the Holy Prophet (pbuh) declared that if his own daughter was proven guilty, she would face punishment.
The importance of education in the Madina state can be understood through the incident of the Battle of Badr. The non-Muslim prisoners of war, who were captured after the battle, were offered freedom in exchange for teaching people in Madina. Similarly, foreign policy revolved around establishing peaceful relations with other tribes and nations. On the occasion of the conquest of Mecca, amnesty was announced for everyone.
When a delegation of Christians from Yeman came to Madina to discuss bilateral issues, the doors of Masjid-e-Nabvi were opened for the delegate members to pray according to their own religious beliefs. This is a wonderful example of promoting interfaith harmony and ensuring respect to all religions.
As far as Pakistan is concerned, we must understand that the formation of a welfare state is not an easy task. The Imran Khan led PTI government has been facing a number of hurdles since day one. In order to tackle these challenges, we must transform our society on the Madina model.
We must ensure a business-friendly environment in our country to make every citizen an earning hand. In the state of Madina, every citizen was so prosperous that nobody was interested in charity money.
Thus, we must ensure we appoint the right person at the right place. Like in past, the Evacuee Trust Property Board is still in dire need of a well-qualified non-Muslim Pakistani chairman. Similarly, there must be some capable non-Muslim politician to represent the interfaith ministry; s/he not only must be well aware about the teachings of all religions but also be able to present the stance of Pakistan at the international level.
The entire non-Muslim community is committed to support the government for implementing the Madina model in Pakistan.