Khurrum Zaki, You got your job done




How were you sure that your first video address, aired on the 4th of May, will be the last? It is so comprehensive; you tell us what you fight for, you identify who you fight against, you declare who you stand with, and why all this is needed. While watching the video, I find another evidence of The Divine Power who plans everything perfectly. It gives you an opportunity to tell us who you are before leaving, and you have done it very well. The sermons of Imam Hussain at Karbala are an effective way to know why he took all the pain. Your video address serves the same purpose.

I enjoy the beauty of your communication in that video address. You summarize the accusations by Maulvi Abdul Aziz against Shia Muslims in Pakistan and the ISI, put forth the facts against the accusations, present your agenda, describe the struggle of the civil society, and state your stand against the sectarian division in the country. In the speech you built the blocks and give a concrete shape to your agenda. Your life also offers the same building on blocks. You moved from the field of computer science to journalism, from production to the hosting of current-affairs program, and from a handful of protestors at the CM House on your call one year back to the attendance of thousands at your funeral procession in the same place. Isn’t it a life-journey an opinionated would wish for?

How did you know that your funeral procession would do what your protest at the CM House one year back did not? Now the FIR is filed against Abdul Aziz & Aurangzeb Farooqi, and the police have some grounds to take action against them. Did you really need to die for this? Was our system so timid and meek against those villains that it needed your dead-body? It appears that these wrongdoers are free to say anything. Just see how frankly they claimed of a sectarian divide in ISI. Is there truth in their claims? Do the officers in our

intelligence agencies first serve their beliefs? Or is our system impotent against these baddies? People say that somehow these criminal-minds get away with whatever they say and do, as there are soft corners in some hearts. My mind refuses to listen to those unrealistic claims; or am I unrealistic?

You were identifying Abdul Aziz, Aurangzeb Farooqi and Shamsuddin Amjad constantly for their wrong acts. Why was your voice heard after your death? May be it was the number of people at your funeral that made the state listen to you. So we share the responsibility with the state for your unnatural death. We did not stand shoulder to shoulder with you in your life. We waited for a dead body to give stimulus to our emotions and to pull us out of our houses. We claim to have an opinion against terrorism but prefer to sit in the living room and argue with family and friends about it. We come out only when we are confident that the danger is reaching to us. We are cowards, Khurram Zaki, but you were not. You came out whenever you thought your presence made a difference. You kept raising your voice against the sectarian danger Pakistan faces constantly.

Weren’t you wise to see the woven net of terrorists in the country? In your first and last address, you condemn military outfits like Jundullah, at the same time you mention Maulvi Abdul Aziz who represents their ideology. I think it would be wise to agree with your identification of the network. After every such incidence we condemn the attacker and the planner, but neglect the person who nurtured their extreme hatred for the innocent. The attacker and the planner get caught at times, but the person guiding their wrong approach towards humans and humanity remains free. He remains free to breed another planner, another attacker. We need to recognize that each link of this chain of cruelty has to be acknowledged and treated in order to free the country of the chains. How can the hatred towards other sects and religions and the

killing of innocent people be justified in the name of religion? I see how cleverly you try to bring people out of their sectarian identity in your video. You tell that sectarian killing is not limited to Shia Pakistani. You tell that being against Maulvi Abdul Aziz is your act as a Pakistani, not as a Shia. I cannot say for others, but I claim the same.

After you have left, I am reading articles connecting you and Sabeen Mahmud – a Sunni activist, connecting Daish with the ill-minded preachers. I am watching talk shows condemning sectarianism and the soft handling of Maulvi Abdul Aziz by the state. I see activists on the road to protest your assassination. Your first video address is enough to tell us the cause of your assassination. It is enough reference to tell what you wanted to see. My heart aches writing WANTED instead of WANT for you, but this is life. You have left us but for a cause. You have got your job done.

Isbah Ali Farzan

The author is a Fulbright doctoral student at the University of Memphis. She can be reached via mail at and via twitter on @isbahisbah

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