Brown Pundit tour of Pakistan

I have been to India almost 10 times and I have a deep love for my ancestral home.

However I suspect no commentator in Brown Pundits “trans-Wagah” have actually visited Pakistan. It would make for far more informed comments to actually visit the country.

My best friend’s good friend is a Marathi who did his PhD on Pakistan. He had never been to the country and my friend & I were often amused by his pronouncements (he had a ton of facts, most of them correct, about why Pakistan was so crap). When he went to Pakistan he absolutely fell in love with the country and his entire instagram feed was flooded with the beauty of Interior Sindh.

Visiting the country would do so much to get a feel for what Pakistan is since it is the object of so much speculation & fascination (Pakistan is the very flawed idealisation of the Mughal state)..

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13 thoughts on “Brown Pundit tour of Pakistan”

  1. Pakistan (West) got the prime real estate of the British India in the partition. The geographical region historically, culturally, and religiously is the essence of India. I would say seat of the heart of Hinduism at one time. When it says in the OT (old testament) that certain empire extended up to India, the writer probably meant present day Pakistan. I recently read somewhere that Alexander invaded Pakistan. I did a double take but realized that it is understandable. Thanks for a meaningful post.

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    1. Sort of like how the West Bank is the core of Israel..

      It would be good to have a EU arrangement for South Asia..

      Independence should have been a Millennial gift; kept the Raj going ..

      I don’t see why it should have been unitary socialistic states in the first place..

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      1. Most Israelis would be horrified at the West Bank (excluding Jerusalem) and a very small number of settlements (about 4% of the West Bank by area) being part of the core of Israel. Please don’t give them nightmares. 🙂

        It is the right of return, water rights, returning confiscated property domiciled in Israel proper, and financial compensation that are the hold ups for a peace agreement.

        “It would be good to have a EU arrangement for South Asia..”
        Agree completely. So far only two Indian PM’s have agreed with us on this; Vajpayee and Modi. It is time for Pakistan to demand this and for India to economically help Pakistan on a massive scale. China, America, Japan, South Korea, Europe, Canada, Australia, Russia, UAE, KSA, Indonesia, Israel . . . looking at you too.

        I hope the world offers Pakistan $500 billion in economic grants over 30 years plus free trade, free investment, free business development, free collaboration on product development, business travel, tourist travel, family travel, work visas. In return, Pakistan reforms. Pakistan solves the Jihadi problem once and for all.

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        1. “Most Israelis would be horrified at the West Bank (excluding Jerusalem and a very small number of settlements–about 4% of the West Bank by area) being part of the core of Israel. Please don’t give them nightmares. 🙂

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  2. Zach,

    You are totally right. Indian Hindutva commentators who have never set foot in Pakistan feel perfectly OK with opining about a country 0f 200 million people. Mostly just to make themselves feel smug about how great India is in comparison. What they don’t realize is that India has many of the same problems. And if BJP gets its way and India becomes a “Hindu Rashtra”, it will simply be the Hindu mirror image of Pakistan.

    People do need to do some research before spouting off about Pakistan or about Islam.

    As for EU style arrangements, I favor those as well. But only after both countries can treat each other as normal neighbors for a while. Indians must stop condescending to Pakistanis. We are an equal sovereign nation state in South Asia. “Akhand Bharat” is long over.

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    1. “People do need to do some research before spouting off about Pakistan or about Islam.”

      Or at least watch movies like bajrangi bhaijan. 🙂

      Indians are not that lacking in the knowledge of Pakistan. The other way may be true. India has a Muslim population of same ethnicity and same number as Pakistan. To translate, there is a Pakistan inside India demographically speaking. Go to any market place in any large town including New Delhi to have a close look at the composite culture.

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    2. “People do need to do some research before spouting off about Pakistan or about Islam.”

      Or at least watch movies like bajrangi bhaijan. 🙂

      Indians are not that lacking in the knowledge of Pakistan. The other way may be true. India has a Muslim population of same ethnicity and same number as Pakistan. To translate, there is a Pakistan inside India demographically speaking. Go to any market place in any large town including New Delhi to have a close look at the composite culture.

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    3. Kabir, any non Pakistani who has carefully studied Pakistan is free to critique Pakistan. Just as anyone is free to critique India, Islam or Hinduism or any other religion.

      Pakistan is an extremely large and diverse country. Some Pakistanis only know their part of Pakistan and are as uninformed or more uninformed compared to “foreigners” about other parts of Pakistan.

      “But only after both countries can treat each other as normal neighbors for a while.” This makes no sense. Pakistan desperately needs India’s and the world’s help. There is no time to waste. The Jihadi Takfiri are not waiting. Neither is the smaller yet insidious post modernist “breaking Pakistan” threat. We need to collaborate to resist our shared enemies. We have common values, common interests, and a common heart.

      “Indians must stop condescending to Pakistanis” How condescending, racist, bigoted or jealous someone else is; is “their business”. What does that have to do with me? By being condescending, racist or jealous of me they are harming themselves far worse than they are harming me. Rather shouldn’t I feel compassion for them or the divine in them? Shouldn’t I respect the freedom of speech, thought, intuition and feeling of others . . . especially if it is negative towards me and mine? Shouldn’t I do what is in my long term interest and more importantly do what is right despite other people’s condescension, racism and jealousy towards me? Including allying and collaborating with said condescending, racist or jealous people if that is the right thing to do at this moment of time. The best way to help said condescending, racist or jealous people is by the power of our example, good company, and melting their hearts.

      There are two causes of condescension, racism or jealousy: heart and wisdom. Hearts are melted by love. Wisdom or intelligence is harder to teach others. Wisdom or intelligence is also a deeply taboo subject for people brainwashed with post modernism.

      You are right that every country, India included, has her problems. My hope is that this teaches us humility and the value of dialogue with others who disagree with us or offend us.

      “And if BJP gets its way and India becomes a “Hindu Rashtra”, it will simply be the Hindu mirror image of Pakistan.” Please reach out to the BJP and engage in dialogue with them. You can even post respectful conversations with them on this blog. What you find out will surprise you. One aspect that will surprise you is how eager many of them are to dialogue with, learn from, and understand you. Your dialogue will change them and change you. Don’t you want to affect their opinions?

      “People do need to do some research before spouting off about Pakistan or about Islam.” Then help them research Pakistan and Islam. Help them learn. Without engaging in detailed dialogue with them, how will you know what they think and why; or even how much they actually know about Pakistan and Islam. For example they might have read many books on Pakistan, have many Pakistani friends. Regarding Islam they might have read a translation of the Koran, Hadiths and Sira. How can you ascertain this without detailed nuanced dialogue.

      ““Akhand Bharat” is long over.” The arm of history is long. This is Pakistan’s ancient civilization. Many things have happened over the past 8 thousand years in “Akhand Bharat.” They might happen still. We are shorter than a wink of an eye in father time. The greatness of Bharat is Pakistan’s greatness and your greatness. It compliments Islam. Sufism in many ways is the meshing of Akhand Bharat with Bharatiya Islam. Why not celebrate your greatness? The great Pakistanis who walked the earth long ago.

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      1. Critique away but do your research first.

        I have zero interest in any dialogue with BJP or Hindu nationalists generally. I don’t have time to educate them out of their flawed version of history.
        Pakistan is here to stay. Akhand Bharat is over. 200 million people now have a separate Muslim majority country. This doesn’t mean we can’t appreciate the past but it is the past.

        As for great Pakistanis walking the earth long ago, no one was a Pakistani until august 14, 1947.

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  3. “It would be good to have a EU arrangement for South Asia”

    Unlikely given the case of Turkey and the EU …

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  4. Kabir: “We are an equal sovereign nation state in South Asia. “Akhand Bharat” is long over.”

    Is it possible many Pakistani generals, politicians, and sundry militant groups dream of attacking India and reestablishing Moghul empire? Then that leads to Akhand Bharat. The dream is alive on both sides of the border. 🙂

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    1. Flying the Pakistani flag from the lal qila is just as ridiculous as akhand bharat. There is no lack of stupidity either side of wagah.

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