Professor Muhammad Saeed Al-Buti had great reverence for the poet of the east Allama Muhammad Iqbal, whose poetry gives out a message of standing up and rebelling against the tyrants, dictators and Kings of the time. Al-Buti was first introduced to Iqbal at the prestigious Al-Azhar University where the professors share a great affinity for the works of Iqbal (RA), his works translated into Arabic were very famous amongst the teachers.
Iqbal’s poetry was first translated into Arabic by Dr. Abdul Wahab Azaam.

Then the mantle was passed on to Maulana Abul-Hassan Nadvi, then a blind professor of the Al-Azhar University Al-Sawi Shalan translated ‘Shikwa’ and ‘Jawab e Shikwa’ so beautifully that popular Arabic singer Umm-e-Kulsoom sang it and made it spread through the entire Arabic world.

Al-Buti wrote a paper in 1973 titled ‘Staying up a night with Iqbal’, In the writing Al-Buti goes onto an imaginary voyage with Iqbal which takes them to Hijaz and Yemen and then leading them to the mosque of Qartoba where Iqbal enchanted by the morning’s glory says,

” I know the fire that burns throughout your frame,
The lands of world still fear its scorching flame.
Your cure in Geneva or London you can’t trace,
Wind-pipe of Franks is gripped by Jewish race.
I know that subject nations freedom gain,
If they would nourish self, display its main.”

To Al-Buti Allama Iqbal’s (RA) vision about ‘selfhood’ and Democracy was a slogan of revolution for the Muslims divided on sectarian lines. He kept on trying to find Iqbal Mard e Momin among the Arab youth and kept teaching them to rise and rebel against monarchy.
This lover of Iqbal was making a speech in a mosque to a congressional in Damascus when a suicide bomber silenced this lover of Iqbal forever but this voice had reached new ears and among the listeners was Jamal Khashoggi.

Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi too was like Al-Buti was an admirer and advocate of free speech and Democracy. He was against monarchy and when Saudi Arab tried to stop him from his right to free expression, he left his motherland.

He departed for America and started writing for the Washington Post. He was not a rebel

against the Saudi regime rather he was merely seeking the rights given to the people under the charter of the United Nations. Some powerful people in the Saudi regime were very cross at Khashoggi’s transgressions, they declared Jamal a traitor who was punishable by death and then they played a bloody and heinous game with Jamal which left Saudi Arab with a black face around the globe.

After killing a detractor of the King, the king is busy giving meek explanations to the murder, If anyone wants to take a lesson from this then they should learn that killing a journalist does not necessarily silence his sentiments and works. Killing a journalist harms the state.

Saudi Arab has organized an economic conference on 23rd October in Riyadh, When the Prime Minister of Pakistan, Imran Khan was addressing the conference at that very moment Reccip Teyyip Erdogan was burdening Saudi Arab with the blame of Khashoggi’s murder after which the Saudi government was pressed to accept that the journalist was indeed killed in the Saudi consulate of Istanbul.

Due to the murder world media built up so much pressure that many of the major participants of the economic conference backed out. Saudi’s by announcing investigations of the murder saved their friends from further trouble, the murder was most troublesome for Pakistan.

Turkey was on one side and Saudi Arabia on the other. Both, great friends of Pakistan, one one hand Saudi Arabia’s safety is very important to us and on the other hand Turkey’s love for Pakistan is a glaring reality but this truth can also not be negated that on one end the government is condemning the murder and on the other end global journalistic organisation’s term Turkey as the biggest jail for Journalists.

American President Donald Trump has also condemned the Khashoggi murder but he is also seen as the biggest enemy of free media in America. Saudi Arabia has monarchy, not Democracy and they treat voices of dissent like they treated Khashoggi.

But, America, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh , Iran are democratic countries why are voices of journalists supressed in these states? Why are journalists murdered in capitalist democracies?

Khashoggi’s murder has jolted the entire world, TV channels and journalists from all over the world are uniting for freedom of media. Trump and Erdogan should bear in mind that the backlash over a journalist’s death has made a powerful King bow his head, your arrogance and bravado to can blow up into smithereens in the future.

I request President Erdogan to release hundreds of journalists in Turkish jails. By imprisoning, murdering or depriving journalists of their livelihood does not strengthen the state, rather weakens it. An admirer said to me that ridiculing Saudi’s for Khashoggi’s murder is not in favor of Pakistan because they have promised us three years worth of oil on loan. I said to my admirer that, I as a Pakistani am indebted to Saudi Arabia’s kindness but I am also aware that my country is not getting this deal for free and the conditions for this kindness may prove to be a curse rather than a blessing, but our Prime Minister took this plunge because Saudi’s have never betrayed us as friends.

Differences with their governance and systems aside but we are the admirer of Iqbal (RA). Our leader too is a lover of Iqbal and considers him his spiritual guide so we should see those great heights in the relationship of the country, the likes of which Al-Buti saw in Iqbal’s ideology.

I congratulate the Prime Minister on a successful Saudi visit but he must bear in mind that we are not to become partisan in an infighting of two Muslim countries, rather act as mediators. We have to take Iran, Afghanistan, Yemen and Turkey with us like Saudi Arabia.

By: | Hamid Mir |