Politically Charged Flag Raising in Toronto a disappointment to many

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Today Pakistani Canadians attended Flag Raising Ceremony that seems like a jointly organized show by the State Govt of Pakistan represented by The Consul General of Toronto and members of Tehreek-e-Insaaf Canada (At least as felt by many others who were in presence for the love of mother land on this national occasion).

Interesting situation arose right after the national anthem when slogans was raised as ,”Pakistan Zindabad, Imran Khan Zindabad and Aiee Aiee Tabeeli Aiee.”

The Naya Pakistan culture was quite visible that certainly was not mentioned in The invitation that we all received via official Consulate Team.

If this was the intention, the other members from multiple political social back ground should not have been invited to keep it more jubilant and independent for one party only.

This politically charged event was well witnessed by all present there and led to disappointment for many other patriotic in attendance for obvious reasons.

Fact remains that Consulate buldings are to serve and respect all segments of society that was clearly violated today and many felt isolated if not harassed or embarrassed at least.

This out of control behavior was first of its kind in the history of Toronto and perhaps CG Toronto Imran Siddiqui himself and his staff were neither prepared to handle this nor did they show any efforts to contain it.

My two cents ; Lets keep National Day for all Pakistanis and don’t get carried away with the results of most controversial Military managed elections in the country’s history.

I remember in the olden days during PPP / PMLN or even Musharraf’s regime, consulate was always like a home for all Pakistanis that brought everyone close & together.

Ironically, this must be the Naya Pakistan and some new ground rules, but today I really missed my old one that had room for all without any prejudice.

On another note selective media favouritism & discrimination was quite obvious but that is not new this year so lets ignore that for now. I have yet to further research more on Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedom and see if there’s an exception for Pakistani Consulate Officials.

So far I found the following basic information and more work is in progress.

Section 2: which lists what the Charter calls “fundamental freedoms” namely freedom of conscience, freedom of religion, freedom of thought, freedom of belief, freedom of expression, freedom of the press and of other media of communication, freedom of peaceful assembly, and freedom of association.

But overall at the end of the day it was the Host who is accountable for this type of mismanagement.

Lets hope its not a recurring attitude in any State Organized future event.

Plane and simple I didn’t like it and I condemn it as it must be condemned.

The writer Anis Farooqui is a social and civil right activist and vocal on Human Right violations across the globe. He works as Host/Producer (Current Affairs) at a leading news channel of North America. He can be reached at anisfarooqui@gmail.com and tweets @anis_farooqui

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