Pakistan: Discrimination Against Ahmadis Extends to Hospitals

One of the banners displayed in front of the Allied Hospital in Faisalabad. From Twitter.

The Pakistan Medical Association displayed anti-Ahmadi banners in front of the Allied Hospital in Faisalabad and called for discrimination of the Ahmadi patients.

On April 4, I led a delegation of scholars attending a religious liberty conference to visit the Batul Hameed Mosque of the Ahmadiyya community in Chino, California. Apart from learning about the rich history of the Ahmadis in California, we wanted to brought to the community, which includes many who came to the United States from Pakistan, our solidarity about the persecution they suffer in that country.

Just as we were visiting the Chino Ahmadi mosque, where the Ahmadis enjoy full freedom of practicing their religion, we received news of a new form of anti-Ahmadiyya persecution in Pakistan. This one is particularly obnoxious since it targets the most vulnerable victims, patients in hospitals.

“Bitter Winter” associate editors Willy Fautré and Rosita Šorytė were part of the delegation that visited the Chino Ahmadi mosque on April 4.

Banners were displayed in front of the Allied Hospital in Faisalabad—not by private hatemongers but by the Pakistan Medical Association (PMA). Written on one banner was: “Qadianism [a derogatory word used to designate the Ahmadiyya community] is a cancer. Muslims will not permit it to spread.” Another read: “The decision of Chief Justice is the encouragement of Qadianism and is akin to playing with the emotions of Muslims.” A third banner read: “Chief Justice’s verdict in favour of the Qadianis goes against Pakistan’s Constitution.”

The second and third banner referred to the February 8 decision of the Chief Justice of Pakistan’s Supreme Court that ordered the release of a man who had distributed an Ahmadi commentary to the Holy Quran. Although the real scope of this decision has been differently interpreted, the most fundamentalist Sunni Muslims in Pakistan regard as offensive any decision that would not just emphatically reaffirm the legitimacy of the the repression against the Ahmadis in all its forms.

According to the Ahmadiyya community, members of the Pakistan Medical Association (PMA) “announced a boycott of Ahmadi patients at hospitals. The PMA’s campaign against Ahmadi Muslims is at variance with medical ethics, common decency, and is a threat to the health and life of the most vulnerable members of society.”

The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community further commented, “This kind of behaviour is not worthy of the esteemed medical profession. We demand that these hateful banners be removed from the site, and moreover, we expect that the authorities at the PMA would hold the culprits accountable and would take action against them in line with their rules.”

The original post can be read HERE.

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