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‘For what sin have you been snatched away from the educational centres you loved like your own home?’

Parents of PakTurk Schools had reacted to the decision of Turkish teachers to be sent from Pakistan. (Photo: AFP)

Theologian-author Abdullah Aymaz voiced his concerns against the demand for expelling the PakTurk teachers from Pakistan five years ago due to the pressure from the Turkish government. Aymaz, who published December 26, 2016 in his zamanamerika.com column a letter he had received, referred to Surah al-Takvir stating that oppressors would not even be worth addressing on the Day of Judgment.

Part One:

Teachers of the PakTurk Schools in brotherly country Pakistan were suspended from providing education and training due to the pressures of a clique which acts only to harm the hubs of education built with countless efforts and financial sacrifice.

The behind-the-scenes of this matter will be chronicled in the annals of history. Allah Almighty will hold those accountable in his Supreme Court, where no ransom or bribery can be paid on the Day of Judgment. He will ask not to them, but first to the oppressed: “Due to what sin, were you severed from the hubs of education and science you loved no different than your own homes?” The same as when a judgment would be made in that ‘Grand Convention’ it will be asked to the girl children who were buried alive in their infancy and early childhood during the Era of Ignorance, “For what sin were you killed?” (Surah al-Takvir, 81/8) … There will be no questions asked of oppressors or usurpers. They will not even be addressed! They used to bury their young daughters. This ignorant notion of the modern age desires to bury everyone in the desert of ignorance. We cannot know by now whose sin will weight heavier in the Scales on the Day of Judgment… May Allah immediately wake the consciences of these oppressors and instil in them awareness for reverting from their mistakes, mending the harm they incurred and asking for forgiveness from the oppressed…  

The following is a letter I received from one of the oppressed in Pakistan due to the abovementioned matter. I will try to convey it exactly:

“First of all, the people of Pakistan have a lot of love for Turkey… PakTurk Schools have been in their service for nearly the last 25 years. Initially, the schools started as small and eventually reached 27 branches. More than 10,000 students in the PakTurk educational institutions chant the national anthems of Pakistan and Turkey every Monday at the morning assemblies and every Friday before the weekend breaks, as a sign of brotherhood and friendship between the two countries. With the field trips, summer schools and Turkish Olympiads organized by our schools, our students have a better understanding of Turkey. PakTurk Schools have achieved numerous successes in Pakistan and worldwide. As a result of these successes, our schools have always been viewed as outstanding educational institutions in Pakistan, where competition prevails among private schools. The number of our students has increased every year. What’s more, for the first time in Pakistan, PakTurk Schools organized the Inter-School Mathematics Olympiad. Last year, 11,000 students across Pakistan participated in this Olympiad.

What distinguishes the PakTurk Schools from others and what our parents like about our institutions are the parent visits held for after-school supervision of the students and the extracurricular activities. Each class has two teachers, one for academics and one for counselling, to prepare the students for life with social and cultural activities to raise young people with character and fidelity to national and spiritual values. These activities, which are not available in other schools, have been received with great admiration and increased interest in the PakTurk educational institutions.

Unfortunately, the atmosphere following the July 15 coup attempt affected the PakTurk Schools across Pakistan. The news in the media alleging the imminent closure of the PakTurk Schools upset our parents, who said they would not allow such a thing to happen and that they would constantly support the Turkish teachers, adding that they saw nothing amiss with the schools for all these years and that’s why the PakTurk Schools would continue to contribute to the Pakistan-Turkey friendship…

For years, parents, friends and neighbours always had a fondness for and admiration for the Hizmet Movement, as the books translated into Urdu were read in regular conversations. For example, only the books I gifted to the grandfather of one student conquered his heart. Saying, “Isn’t there more?” this elderly gentleman wished to read new ones.

While such an exquisite atmosphere prevailed, the country was shaken with the news about the cancellation of our visas! You should have seen the response and reaction of the parents, our students, and even people who had nothing to do with our schools! We did not expect such a display of affection, sorrow and sincere apology! This is how we realized how much we have been loved!”

What else could be expected after so many years of self-sacrifice and perseverance?

To be continued…

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