Impure cricket

An editorial from the Daily Times in Pakistan:

Pakistani society’s deep rooted acceptance of despicable misogynistic behaviour once again came to light recently when a mixed gender group of students at Karachi University (KU) who were playing a casual game of cricket together within the bounds of the university were assaulted for doing so by the activists of the notoriously thuggish fundamentalist Islami Jamiat-e-Talba (IJT), the student wing of the Jamat-e-Islami. The IJT and its members are a menace across the universities of the country, and they have defaced and perverted these supposed places of learning and critical reflection into fearful places of demagoguery and reactionary backwardness.

Imagine if Mormons or Baptists were doing that on university campuses in the US – assaulting people for playing cricket (or baseball) without segregating by sex.

Interaction between grown adults of the opposite gender is a particular target of their crusading violence and they are emboldened to carry out their disgraceful actions due to the authorities and police in particular turning a blind eye to their actions. For decades this student organisation has carried out its hooliganism with impunity, terrorising students who are legal adults and not beholden to have their behaviour policed according to the precepts of some moralising band of roving fanatical vigilantes.

Imagine living in a place where you were always subject to being policed by some moralising band of roving fanatical violent vigilantes.

In the KU case, eyewitnesses report that the students were merely passing the time while waiting for their conveyances after classes were over, when the bunch of IJT goons took issue with men playing with women and demanded they stop, which resulted in an acrimonious exchange and the aforementioned attack. The attack resulted in injuries to five students, including the female students.

Police arrived and stopped the attack, but the IJT goons were promptly released.

In all likelihood, the police will not prosecute these thugs and as per its past record, deem such an issue a trivial annoyance and sweep it under the carpet. The IJT will continue to operate freely, while rival student organisations have long since been banned, ostensibly to prevent rival student groups’ violence. This state of affairs is shameful and cannot be condemned enough. The police and the university are making a statement by their inaction that they do not see this brand of violent evangelicalism to be problematic and do not consider the participation of women in public life, let alone their right to enjoy regular activities without trauma, a matter of any significance.

Because they’re just women. They don’t matter.

4 Responses to “Impure cricket”