Much like politics, diplomacy can also be a statement made by means of novelty. In this aspect, US President Donald Trump’s engagements with the Pakistani and Indian prime ministers stand in stark comparison. Though it was all glitz and glamour throughout Howdy, Modi occasion in Houston at which Prime Minister Narendra Modi”introduced” US president to”a miniature India at Texas”, it was quiet and somber in New York at which Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan met Donald Trump and held a joint press conference.
Regardless of what was spoken in the media conference, mostly dominated by Donald Trump, what grabbed everyone’s attention was Imran Khan counting prayer beads known as Misbaha because his US counterpart spoke.
This was especially noticeable if questions were introduced to Donald Trump over India-Pakistan relations and the situation in Kashmir Valley.
Together with Imran Khan looks at him, Donald Trump said that he noticed PM Modi makes aggressive statements which were well received by a 50,000-plus powerful crowd in Houston. After a reporter posed a question concerning the allegations of human rights violation in Kashmir,” Donald Trump commented,”Where would you find terrorists like those” while studying Imran Khan.
Imran Khan was seeing counting prayer beads as Donald Trump gave a fairly lengthy response. These prayer beads weren’t viewed in Imran Khan’s hands during his interview with Donald Trump in July. This could possibly be linked with his frenzied attempt to show himself and Pakistan since the chief of the Islamic world in the wake of the Kashmir movement by the Narendra Modi government.
But first, a few words about the importance of those ivory beads in Islam. Prayer beads are a part of virtually all religions. A normal Misbaha, since they’re known, comprises 99 beads corresponding to the 99 names of Allah. A miniature Misbaha using 33 beads is utilized by lots to say prayers in Islam. Imran Khan was counting on the smaller one, which can be used by a devotee thrice for its comprehensive recitation of prayers.
Now, the Kashmir connection.
Pakistan bets a claim over Kashmir mentioning the Muslim majority people in Jammu and Kashmir. Pakistan has found its own stand on the problem as an expansion of the two-nation concept that resulted in the partition of India and Pakistan in 1947. From the name of faith, successive Pakistani governments have attempted to foment trouble in Jammu and Kashmir, particularly in the Valley.
But, successive elections in Jammu and Kashmir guaranteed improved integration of the country and individuals with the rest of India. This saw dire efforts from Pakistan to maintain the Kashmir Valley on the border through terrorism.
As soon as the Narendra Modi government battled the distinctive status of Jammu and Kashmir, which it stated was the reason Pakistan succeeded in assisting separatists and equipping terrorists at the nation, the Imran Khan government started a diplomatic offensive calling for a show of unity from the Islamic world.
Imran Khan has tried to project Pakistan as the chief of the Muslims across the world, exhorting them to set up a united fight against India. Before this month as he prepared to increase the Kashmir issue in the UN General Assembly – that is now underway at New York, Imran Khan stated,”Individuals will grow against India, and it isn’t only about Indian Muslims, you will find 1.25 billion Muslims across the world. They all are seeing this [nullifying Article 370 of the Indian Constitution that gave special status to Jammu and Kashmir].”
This story satisfies Imran Khan’s political constituency in Pakistan, which will be in the grip of fundamentalist leaders, who always extend patronage to terror outfits in the nation. Imran Khan has continued to utilize faith to create a spot for himself in Pakistan’s politics.
But, his penchant for faith is something which came later in life.
Throughout his cricketing days, when he captained Pakistan’s win at the 1992 ICC Cricket World Cup, he wasn’t famous for his spiritual beliefs. He, in reality, confessed to getting very little interest in faith and that also due to his mum, who died of cancer. The passing from his mum brought Imran Khan into people contact since he toured to increase funds for a cancer clinic at the memory of his mom.
He took a dip into politics in 1996 and across precisely the exact same time, he revealed his interest in Islam. Several decades afterwards in 2012, he composed a post – My Journey to Religion — from the Arab News, a Saudi Arabia-based book wherein he maintained that he switched to Islam as a response to the book, Satanic Verses from British Indian writer Salman Rushdie.
As he climbed to the political mainstream, he assembled his messaging about service to religious fundamentalist groups. The service went to the extent he was dubbed’Taliban Khan’. But the exact same political constituency brought him to power in 2018. Upon winning, he also gave a call for constructing a’Naya Pakistan’ which is going to have brand new Islamic identity.
Now, in a time after his Muslim bogey over Kashmir has failed to find fame in the Islamic world and dented his image as a powerful Muslim leader, Imran Khan is hoping to reestablish his qualifications to his supporters in Pakistan. His bead counting during the press conference with Donald Trump may well be part of the strategy to recover the lost ground straight home.