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Villified by Urdu dailies, Prof. Nayyar defends himself.

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    Villified by Urdu dailies, Prof. Nayyar defends himself.

    From 'Friday times'. We have seen similar campaigns against Najam Sethi and Asma Jahangir.

    Professor Nayyar of QAU speaks out in his defence

    Following an incident at the Quaid-e-Azam University, which was misreported by a section of the press, Professor A H Nayyar, against whom some Urdu dailies have launched a vilification campaign, has issued his version of the events. Nayyar says he never made the statements that were attributed to him and therefore the stories and editorials published by some newspapers are based on falsehood. TFT is reproducing here Professor Nayyar's version on the principle that everyone has the right to a defence and no one should be condemned unheard.



    "This clarification relates to an event that happened on May 2. I was invited to the National Institute of Psychology at the Quaid-i-Azam University to give a talk to the students and faculty on 'The sense of insecurity and the weapons of mass destruction.' The centre-piece of my argument was that we, as a nation, have been afflicted with a sense of insecurity that has now degenerated into a state of acute paranoia. I invited the students of psychology to see if the symptoms point to the ailment. I also pointed out that as an answer to our perceived insecurity we have constructed our own realities which quite often are at variance with truth, and in turn reinforce our paranoia. I contended that this has become a pathological condition with us.



    "To elaborate the point I gave examples from our textbooks, about how history has been distorted and how things have worsened over the years. I recalled how my senior colleagues tell me that in the late fifties, full ten years after independence, some of their examination papers were set in India, their thesis teachers used to come from India, how Radio Pakistan could air Indian film songs until the early sixties, how Indian films were shown in Pakistani cinema houses, how we had the privilege of learning history in an impartial manner, with details on the reigns of early Hindu period of Ashoka and Chandargupt Moriya, etc. But then we closed the door on us and insulated ourselves in order to conform everything, including history, to our own mental constructions. I tried to show that much of what is taught to students nowadays is anything but truth.



    "The students are fed on falsity and are taught to hate, I said. Even the most recent history is blatantly distorted. For this I cited some textbooks lessons on the 1965 war, which state that India started the war and attacked Pakistan in the dark of the night. That Pakistan valiantly fought back, winning large enemy territories. India desperately sought international help in stopping the war and Pakistan graciously returned the captured territories. All this against the statements of former PAF chiefs, Nur Khan and Asghar Khan. Linking the state of collective paranoia with nuclear weapons, I quoted a serving Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee telling my friend Dr. Pervez Hoodbhoy some years ago that he would not mind if Indians in retaliation to a Pakistani use of nuclear weapon destroyed all the Pakistani cities and killed millions, as long as Pakistan could harm India in some manner.



    "What happened in response to this talk was interesting. A student stood up and berated me for negating the ideology of Pakistan and the concept of jehad (I had neither spoken of the ideology of Pakistan nor of jehad). He insisted that Pakistanis must destroy India even if it meant complete annihilation of Pakistan. What struck me most was the loud applause his statement drew from other students. The student then walked out in protest against my subversive talk. The rest of the students remained seated for another half-hour's session. The discussion was lively with arguments both for and against my contention. I realised later while talking to a student of mine that the younger people, particularly those who have passed through the mainstream educational system where the state indoctrination is so prevalent, are so heavily conditioned by the textbooks that truth comes to them as an unpleasant shock. This may explain the ovation the student got after my talk. It also expalins why jehad has such a wide approval in society.



    "More interesting things happened the next day. The event was reported in an Urdu newspaper on May 3. It attributed to me what I had not said, and in a very venomous way. For example it quoted me as saying: 'The two-nation theory was wrong'; 'It is Pakistan's armed forces which have erected the wall of hatred between the peoples of India and Pakistan'; 'Pakistan is a mischievous country, and always nags India' etc.



    "The next day, on May 4, the paper carried a column by its editor (in essence an editorial) with the provocative headline of "Indian Assault on Quaid-i-Azam University." The editor repeated all the statements falsely attributed to me the previous day, questioning my loyalty to the country and demanding that I be sacked from the university. I later learnt that in a seminar of journalists on May 3 some journalists, including the editor of another newspaper, spoke against me on the basis of the earlier news reports. This paper also wrote an editorial against me on May 4. The first Urdu daily which started the whole controversy published another news item on May 5, being more provocative this time by accusing me and my friends at the Institute of Psychology of indulging in propaganda against Pakistan and Islam, of being non-believers and denigrating Muslims.



    "I have written to the paper's editor in Urdu and have sent this version to various publications in order to bring the facts on record and clarify my position."



    #2
    What's the contribution of this article to improve the lives of Pakistanis?

    ------------------
    Sarfraz Khan

    Comment


      #3
      Well, the point of Prof. Nayyar was

      "The centre-piece of my argument was that we, as a nation, have been afflicted with a sense of insecurity that has now degenerated into a state of acute paranoia. I invited the students of psychology to see if the symptoms point to the ailment. I also pointed out that as an answer to our perceived insecurity we have constructed our own realities which quite often are at variance with truth, and in turn reinforce our paranoia. I contended that this has become a pathological condition with us."

      Comment


        #4
        What Nayyar can talk to a drought hit nation? Are the drought hit people gonna understand him? Do they have any understanding power when no oxygen reaches their brains?

        ------------------
        Sarfraz Khan

        Comment


          #5
          Very interesting article, it explains the behavior of some people on this forum.

          People who sowed the seeds of hatred will also be finished along with their loved ones, when Pakistan decides to annihilate itself.

          Comment


            #6
            DAWN:
            Rewriting history

            Everyone knows that Shahbuddin Ghauri was an invader of India. He killed millions of people( Both Hindus and Muslims), plundered India, destroyed temples and mosques. Yet when India named it surface to earth missile 'Prithvi' (Prithvi means 'Earth' in Hindi) , Pakistani politicians tried to name their missile 'Ghauri' in honor of the Muslim invader who defeated the Hindu king Prithviraj Chauhan. We have lost sight of the fact that not all of the 'great Muslim heroes' were actually so. Tomorrow we would see barbarous Chengez Khan turned into a Muslim super hero. Most of the Muslim rulers we consider "heroes" behaved abominably by ordering the slaughter of an embassy numbering some three hundred - most of them Muslims and also Hindus.

            Those rulers who defeated the Hindus are portrayed as heroes and their achievements are glorified and admired such as Muhammad bin Qasim, Mahmud of Ghazni, and Shahabuddin Ghauri. Among the Mughal emperors, Aurangzeb is preferred to secular Akbar. This is not only outright ignorance, but an ignorance born out of fifty three years of misconstrued history. Successive governments and bureaucrats with vested interests unaware of the fact that history has no religion, but that all religions have a history have attempted to convert the history of the Indian subcontinent to Islam. Consequently, for most Muslims in Pakistan (and perhaps even in India) any personage with an Arabic or Persian name is a supposed Islamic hero. For most ignorant folks it does not matter how disreputable that person may have been -- only the name suffices. The History taught in Pakistan is so distorted. The view among the decision makers is that Pakistan's history should begin from the Arab invasion of Sindh (A.D. 711) in order to give it an Islamic character. Ancient history when most Muslims in India were Hindus, prior to the Arab invasion, should be set aside, as it is not part of the Islamic history.

            The process of Islamization and related ideologies have changed the approach to history as well as archaeology. All Indians and Hindus are treated as villians and Muslims heroes. Pakistan tries to create role Models of any Muslim warrior. What has this produced, an entire generation of ignorant Pakistanis who are unaware of real history, but have one thing in common ie. "Indians and Hindus are our enemies".

            Comment


              #7
              Professor Nayyar is Definitely a Very Learned man and for me,
              a "Teacher", commands utmost Respect...

              However, when I see articles such as the one by Prof Nayyar,
              I tend to view them, with a skeptical eye...

              I belong to the bunch of Liberals, who Worship Freedom in all it's forms
              and so,
              I can well identify with the Prof.'s Frustration with the incidents, which led him to speak out.

              But I have to say, that Recognizing and Accepting the Flaws/Drawbacks/Past & Present Errors in a Nation's Fabric,
              in order to come up with Solutions and/or Methods to Regain/Re-ingnite Passion, Pride, Betterment, etc.,

              DOES NOT necessarily entail, either a comparison with and/or a discussion, of a country which we all know, whether rightfully or wrongfully, we are perennially locking horns with....

              I guess, this attitude reminds me of some figures, both Muslim and Hindu, belonging to the Undivided India.....their subtle Patronizing of the British Sahebs...

              Almost a need for acceptance by the "other"...
              Also, the good intentions to harmonize with the other, which "may" be a factor on Prof. Nayyar's mind and which definitely is a Positive step,

              but coupled with a sense of belief, that such can only be achieved by somehow placing the "other", one notch higher than we....
              making them feel good...
              Blaming ourselves...may be Rightfully, but in the same line Praising the "other" a bit....

              By the way, I have used thoughts and phrases loosely and they are game for open interpretation, but the bottom line for me is,

              that I don't need to Cater and/or Flatter another Nation, no matter how subtle and indirect my approach, when exercising my Personal Patriotic Endeavours...

              HOWEVER, I don't need to Demean/Degrade the other either!!!

              The Prof. says,

              "The centre-piece of my argument was that we, as a nation, have been afflicted with a sense of insecurity that has now degenerated into a state of acute paranoia."

              I am Far too Uneducated to comment on this, but I will brave and say I couldn't agree more!

              But, to go on with the statment,

              "But then we closed the door on us and insulated ourselves in order to conform everything, including history, to our own mental constructions. I tried to show that much of what is taught to students nowadays is anything but truth."

              Come on Prof.! what were you thinking??!!

              We both know that such sentiments will only add more fuel to the Already Volatile mind set of the majority!
              And to say so, while speaking to Students, who in any case are the Young/Hot headed ones....?

              I am PRETTY SURE you could have come up with a Better way of presenting your point of view...*smile*

              My apologies for trying to analyse your, Pakistan once again trying to thwart Freedom of Speech Plea.....*smile*

              Comment


                #8
                perhaps prof. nayyar was thinking of giving a shock therapy. sometimes u take an extreme side if u feel that audience is one sided to provoke them into thinking. back home i have talked extensively against problems in hindu religion. but on this forum, i take entirely different viewpoint and support hinduism because audience is too partisan and i do not want to cultivate their xenophobic opinions more.

                he was not talking to an Indian audience. so no question of flattering them or whatever.

                But what I have been hearing about India, Hinduism, history of India on this forum, I find it extremely uninformed. If they do not like Indian books, they should read western books on these topics. That will definitely help to get away from this extreme viewpoint.

                The others do not have different viewpoint than mundayya and likes have. They just are more polite. Otherwise the same, except a few.

                Perhaps, Prof. Nayyar was objecting the developement of this monolithic viewpoint and a need for critical thinking. There is definitely a problem on that count in Islamic societies.

                [This message has been edited by ZZ (edited May 20, 2000).]

                Comment


                  #9
                  Dehtan,

                  I think you missed the point, Indians and Pakistanis are genetically same people and share the histroy and culture. You cannot and should not change histroy to suit to creat boundaries and imaginary difference.

                  To reconstruct history in order to teach hate and disrespect of other people's believe system and institutions creates animosity and hatred towards your neighbors which in the end will cause lot more harm to Pakistanis then to Indians.

                  I agree with Prof. Nayyar History should be told as it is falsying history to pollute young minds and dehumanzing the enemy (India) is worst thing anybody can do to young minds. This has largely contributed increased military spending and economic decline of Pakistan. The intolerance taught in schools can be witnessed on the streets of Pakistan in form of clashes between Sunni and Shias etc.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    ZZ

                    Hmmm...
                    I hear your opinion...I respect your's, while I stick to mine, Laugh!

                    By the way, about some members on this forum being, as you say,

                    "extremely uninformed." about Hinduism and/or Indian history.

                    Sadly, the "some" are as, ignorant and intolerant, about Islam and affairs of Pakistan too....

                    This is a new breed, called
                    Yahoo Pundits....*smile*

                    Comment


                      #11
                      maybe u r right, but at his university in pakistan he is not dealing with those 'yahoo pandits'.

                      he has certain set of people with certain opinions before him. he thought he would analyze those. the existence or absence of complementary set across the border is not relevant.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        I used the term "Yahoo Pundits" for some of the members on this forum.....NOT for who Prof. Nayyar was dealing with....

                        Members, who you mentioned in your post, were "extremely uninformed" about Hinduism or whatever....

                        As for as Prof Nayyar's article, I said,

                        "I hear your opinion...I respect your's, while I stick to mine,.."

                        Comment

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