Campaign launched to end blame between sects over Covid-19 spread | Pakistan Today

Campaign launched to end blame between sects over Covid-19 spread

LAHORE: Human Rights Minister Ijaz Alam Augustine has expressed resolve to spread the message of everyone’s vulnerability to coronavirus, saying that the Human Rights Ministry will extend all its resources to spread the message of peace and harmony by backing YDF’s media campaign to counter negative propaganda.

A multi-stakeholder consultation was held at The Ministry of Human Rights, Minorities and Interfaith Harmony on Thursday for bringing communities together during the pandemic rather than blaming any sect for spreading the infection in this regard.

The consultation was organised jointly by the ministry and the Youth Development Foundation (YDF).
It was stressed no sect should be stigmatising while the nation must stand united and discourage such divisive actions.

“Holding any sect or faith responsible for spreading coronavirus is totally unacceptable,” he said.

YDF head Shahid Rehmat said the pandemic has not only immobilised the country’s economic activities but also created more divides between different groups based on misconceptions.

“Unfortunately, different sectarian groups and members have started blaming each other for the spread of the pandemic in the country whereas Shia pilgrims returning from Iran and members of the Tableeghi Jamaat are also being stigmatised and termed guilty of spreading the virus in Pakistan,” he said.

YDF has proposed to work with the Ministry of Human Rights to design a dedicated communication campaign containing messages of faith base leaders, community leaders, politicians and celebrities on peace, harmony and tolerance. These messages will be carried by different media outlets, cable TV, community radios, in the form of banners, streamers etc.

The content has been written by literary figure Ali Akbar Natiq. Those whose messages will be aired include Maulana Tariq Jameel, Allama Raghib Naeemi, Allama Tahir Ashrafi, Minister of Human Rights Ijaz Alam Augustine, Ali Akbar Natiq and others.