Now Swat has become the flash point, and nation is forgetting the recent deaths in Karachi. As Karachi blasts faded the deal and NRO issue of Benazir, and as NRO diminished the Presidential election, and as Presidential elections blanketed the return of Nawaz Sharif to Jeddah and so on.
Now the actor in Swat is one Maulana Fazlullah. He has created a state within the state, and has implemented Shariah in the Malakund division. He has been active in the area for the last five years, and has even his own FM radio to convey his message. He has literally created a vast constituency with massive following. He started his messages from women, and now huge numbers of men and women are following him in that area and in the suburbs.
He returned from Afghanistan in 2001, and then arrested and remained for 18 months in jail. After his release, he started to establish his own following in the Swat Area. What he is doing, is exactly what he was doing for the last five years. He hasn’t really started an armed struggle; rather he is liked by the people of that area. Though his stance of creating a state within the state cannot be justified, and also his refusal to let police or army in his area is also not acceptable, but then they are wary of the operation of Lal Masjid and Jamia Hafsa.
It is very strange as how things reached to this point, where all of a sudden the whole country becomes aware that there is someone who is confronting the might of army, and even threatening, and then the operation, and then the boom. It’s still also a quandary as how Maulana Abdul Aziz and his brother erected a considerable defense against Pakistan Army, and now this stunt in Swat. Maulana Siraj-ud-din, the spokesperson of Maulana Fazlullah is saying that Swat is not Islamabad, and we will not let anyone in “our” area. Reports are that the “Mujahids” of Maulana Fazlullah have displayed the beheaded bodies of security officials in the markets of Mengora, the main city of Swat.
How things suddenly become so grave? Why they let it cooking for so long? Where in the hell the so-called writ is? Why everybody suddenly recalls the writ of the government? FATA or no FATA, people who live there are Pakistanis, and they are entitled to enjoy the full rights. Common people have started to migrate from Swat area, as situation is getting worse. Though talks for reconciliations are underway, but who knows.
Some political pundits are also predicting that this could be the excuse to delay the up-coming general elections, which are likely to be held in the start of January the next year. All this happens, and the common Pakistani just wants and watches in terror and confusion.