Bilawal’s principled stance against use of religion card for political gains starts a new debate

All Parties Conference (APC) initiated a new debate as Bilawal Bhutto Zardari took a principled stand in the APC against use of religion card.


  • All Parties Conference (APC) on Wednesday initiated a new debate on the use of religion card for political gains.
  • Pakistan People’s Party chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari took a principled stand in the APC, rejecting the years-old weapon.
  • Fazlur Rehman suggested mobilizing the masses against Prime Minister Imran Khan’s ‘blasphemous remarks’ about ‘Sahaba’.
  • Bilawal took a firm stand against it, saying that PPP doesn’t encourage the use of religion card or derailing democracy. 
  • Bilawal’s stance garnered a lot of appreciation from the public and even from PTI members. 

Use of religion card and personal attacks for political gains has been a repetitive sight in Pakistani politics. The nasty strategy, though always proving to be effective, has initiated a new wave of extremism and religious intolerance every time it has been used.

Pakistan Tehreek E Insaf (PTI) used a similar plan against Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz), which not only was a scoring point for them in the election campaign but also lead to dire consequences, like an attack on senior PML(N) member Ahsan Iqbal.

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The star-studded All Parties Conference (APC) on Wednesday initiated a new debate on the use of religion card for political gains, which lead to differences between the opposition members. As a result, the news of differences circulated while it left little to no impact on the incumbent government.

What did the opposition members disagree on?

The reports say that the opposition parties disagreed on a number of points, but two were specifically discussed. One being Bilawal’s disapproval of the use of religion card. Secondly, his stern view that no matter what happens, democracy must prevail.

APC chairman and convener Maulana Fazlur Rehman, chief of the Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) suggested mobilizing the masses against Prime Minister Imran Khan for his recent televised address to the nation. Premier has met a lot of criticism for by religious groups for allegedly making ‘blasphemous’ remarks against ‘Sahaba’ (Fellows) of Prophet Mohammad (PBUH).

Bilawal, despite his bitter differences with the government, disapproved of it. He said that no matter what happens, PPP will stand with its ideology and will not use religion card for political gains, setting a new brilliant example in Pakistani politics. Bilawal also was unhappy with PML (N) manipulating the situation and said that the party should not have dragged religion amid political differences, as its own senior member was shot and became a victim of religious intolerance (Ahsan Iqbal targeted in Narowal gun attack). 

High-profile leaders of the Opposition parties were about to approve this suggestion when Bilawal put his foot down firmly, making it clear that he or his party would never opt out for any political gain acquired by manipulating people’s religious sentiments.

Democracy must prevail:

Bilawal said Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, mother Benazir Bhutto and two maternal uncles, Murtaza and Shah Nawaz, lost their lives while opposing the forces of extremism and fanaticism. Supporting the religion card is equal to doing injustice to them.

Another suggestion, that of en masse resignation of MPs, was also put forward but was repudiated as well. Fazlur Rehman suggested resignation of opposition legislators from the assemblies but the main opposition parties rejected it. Bilawal again said that they will not derail democracy.

Both PMLN and PPP chose to opt for a joint strategy inside and outside the parliament against the incumbent government to uphold democracy. Bilawal’s stance in both cases has raised his political stature as a visionary leader.

Fawad Chaudhry appreciates Bilawal’s approach:

Federal Minister for Science and Technology Fawad Chaudhry lauded Bilawal’s stance in his tweet. He said fatwa (decree)-issuing clerics are the biggest threat to Pakistan in his statement.

Fawad said that people from all sects should wage Jihad against this attitude as 75 percent of “our problems develop due to such clerics”.


People are divided over it:


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