From most Welcome to Go Afghani Go and Kick out Afghans Campaigns
In year 1992, when civil war begun in Afghanistan, our family was one of those millions of Afghans who migrated to the neighbouring country Pakistan most people had their way to Iran and Pakistan to save their lives. Leaving our landlords and properties behind, we were warmly welcomed by the muslim brothers of Pakistan.
Initially, we took shelter in a refugee camp in Hangu district of Pakistan. After some weeks, our family shifted to the North-Western city of Pakistan, Peshawar. We were totally unfamiliar with the new custom, language, traditions, behaviors, and culture.
For the first few years, we had to face difficulties in social interaction with Pakistanis due to unfamiliar with the culture and language. But as the time passed, we started a new life in Pakistan with the intention to return back to our homeland once peace is restored back but political future of Afghanistan was going to be more worse. In 1994, Taliban occupied Afghanistan and begun to implement their views with a total ban on women education.
During Taliban regime, the life in Afghanistan was more dangerous than it was before. Thousands of more people begun to migrate for their lives. At this harsh time for Afghan nation, Pakistan was the only option to go and save their lives, mostly settled in the Pashtun belt as there was a natural sympathy for them for historical and cultural reasons among Pakhtuns.
Due to great hospitality in Pakistan, Afghans refugees begun to consider Pakistan as their second home. Afghan refugees set-upped their businesses to support Pakistani economy, enrolled their children in schools and colleges and bought properties. Young generation of Afghan refugees were more patriotic towards Pakistan as compare to their homeland Afghanistan.
For 3 decades, more than 4.2 million Afghan refugees enjoyed proposer and brotherhood-like bilateral relations with Pakistanis. Despite of this, when I was yet an infant, sometimes we were teased by our colleagues to go back. I didn’t understand this but I got to understand it when i grew and realised that I am a migrant;Refugee here and Pakistanis don’t want to accept us and this country Pakistan is never ours.
The relations between Afghanistan and Pakistan are now suffering from it’s decline due to border dispute. Recently, Afghan forces and Pakistan force’s aggression on Torkham border killed many lives from both sides that sparked hatred against Afghan refugees in Pakistan. Life for Afghan refugees is now harder and insulting. Students are not given admissions in universities, Police arrest and enchain them. Properties owned by Afghan refugees are being captured by the government of Pakistan. SIM cards used by them are blocked. Social media and electronic media are used as a catalyst in flaming hatred against Afghan refugees.
Pakistan and Afghanistan government always had quarrels but it didn’t reach its peak. The words “Go Afghani Go” which I would heard at childhood are now uttered on everyone’s lips. Besides that Afghans played a vital role in stabilising Pakistan’s economy but recent clashes ruined the bilateral relations and the slogan “Go Afghani Go” and “Kick out Afghans“once again got viral as a result of which Afghan refugees started facing oppression on public and government levels. Afghan refugees who were loyal towards Pakistan had to take a step back and review their patriotism after operation against Afghan refugees.
My friends with whom I spend whole my life as dearest friends turned against me. This led to the envy and hatred among us. People yelling “Go Afghani Go” and “Kick out Afghans” hashtag on social media. People who are calling us to go back should never forget our patriotism, service and loyalty for them. Can they pay-back it?
Our homeland is Afghanistan and ultimately we have to return back but don’t ruin your decades hospitality so that we can tell our coming generations stories of your hospitality and love.
So for Allah’s sake, we are all Muslims and we are taught by our religion to spread love and brotherhood not racism, envy and hatred. May this region prevail with a long lasting peace!
Article by Khanzada Nisar Khan
The writer Khanzada Nisar Khan an Afghan Social Activist and Covering AF-PAK news.
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