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Copenhagen lecture on Religious Extremism in Pakistan
April 23, 2013 - 12:30-14:00
Dr. Siddiqa is a PhD in War Studies from King’s College, University of London. She is the author of two books: Pakistan’s Arms Procurement and Military Buildup, 1979-99 In Search of a Policy (Palgrave Press, UK – 2001) and (b) Military Inc, Inside Pakistan’s Military Economy’ (Pluto Press, UK April 2007). Dr Siddiqa has taught at the School of Advanced International Studies, Johns Hopkins University and University of Pennsylvania in USA.
Abstract: According to a recently published survey by the British Council a large part of the youth, especially in Punjab, Pakistan, want implementation of Sharia law. The judges from the lower judiciary appointed as officers to scrutinize documents of candidates contesting the coming national elections forced the latter to recite holy verses and ascertaining their knowledge of religion. This has forced some to question whether the founding father Mohammad Ali Jinnah, who was otherwise a man of non-religious habits, survived such scrutiny. Indeed, is it really Jinnah’s Pakistan. The paper will examine the ideological contestation in Pakistan and its impact on the country today. It will look at the process of politicization of religion in historical context and also as an extension of regional trends in South Asia.