Contribution Of British Pakistani Muslims


If you are an avid supporter of a Anti Islamic group like the EDL or believe hate proper-gander from far right political parties like the BNP.  You may be asking what have British Muslim Pakistanis done for Britain and the British people.  Some May even say that Islam has no place in British society as it conflicts with social fabric this country is built.

Well here is a brief and compressed History lesson, and I will start with a Pakistani Muslim whom influenced one of Britain’s greatest monarchs Elizabeth the First, Queen of England.

Akbar the great One of India’s Greatest Mughal Emperors and father of the immortalised Shah Jahan. OK you may say he was not Pakistani.  But he was from the land which today is now Pakistan and was a Muslim.  What has Akbar got to do with Britain, well he was an inspiration to  Queen Elizabeth and  the cultural implications of the British officials sent to his court had effects in Britain. Some scholars may even say influenced  social laws.  Akbar formed probably the first multi religious council that discussed religious issues and tolerance.

Akbar wrote, As most men are fettered by bonds of tradition, and by imitating ways followed by their fathers… everyone continues, without investigating their arguments and reasons, to follow the religion in which he was born and educated, thus excluding himself from the possibility of ascertaining the truth, which is the noblest aim of the human intellect. Therefore we associate at convenient seasons with learned men of all religions, thus deriving profit from their exquisite discourses and exalted aspirations.” 

Akbar wrote these words aimed at Philip II because of the Spanish catholic actions to Protestant Christians in Spanish controlled areas, The church of England being protestant and a young religion at that time needed support by world leaders.  Queen Elizabeth considered Islam to be closer religiously to the protestant faith than Catholicism.

A Few random Facts.

  •  The 8th century Anglo-Saxon King Offa had a Islamic Inscription on his coin, Offa was King of Essex and Mercia.
  •  Muslims community’s have been settled in the UK as early as 1627.
  •  The first purpose-built mosque was constructed in Woking in 1889.

British Indian Muslims have their history embedded in The British armed forces fighting in many conflicts across the world through out Imperial british history.  The  most notable conflicts being World War one and two.  During those periods there was a huge drop in both Hindu and Sikh persons joining the British Indian army and a rise in Muslim Indians volunteers. Punjabi Muslims made up a huge three percent of the British armed forces and during WW2 the British army had 2.5 million volunteers from the Indian sub continent.  (Punjabi Muslims being the majority in Pakistan today).  We have to remember these troops fighting in two wars were volunteers not conscripts like in Britain.  They fought for the freedom, democracy and rights of UK citizens when they was denied this by British rule in India.  According to the British commonwealth graves commission 87.000 Indian troops died in world war 2. Out of 122 deaths of Indian troops under the age of 18 in Italy, 90 was Muslim boys whom was only 15 years old.

There was a total of 383.800 British military deaths in World war 2 this includes Indian persons serving in the British Indian army.  So statistics show 87.000 of the 383.000 were Indian.

Congress in India declared WW2 was not their fight the Indian Muslim league responded declaring it was the their fight giving support for Britain fighting against fascism by 1945 British forces totaled 650,000 Muslim Indians.

Other  Muslim activity during world 2 includes the 350.000 north African Muslims in the French army fighting the Germans invasion of France, 2.000 Jewish refugees was hidden in the Paris central mosque and given fake  Muslim identities.

I could go on forever about Muslim Indian persons serving in two world wars with facts and figures gained from varies sources, scholars and historians, but I simply don’t have the time.

But I would not forgive myself if I didn’t mention Noor Inyat Khan daughter of the famous Sufi teacher and musician Hazrat Inayat Khan and the Great great-granddaughter of Tipu Sultan a 18th century ruler of Mysore.


Noor was executed by Nazis after 10 months of interrogation after being deployed in France as a wireless operator. Her last words are reputed to be, before being shot by the Gestapo at Dachau concentration camp were, “Libirte”.   Noor Inyat Khan Never revealed any information, she was awarded both the George cross and Croix de Guerre.

The information Noor gathered,  her contribution to  was crucial to intelligence operations in Nazi occupied  France during world war two and her deeds must not be forgotten.

We must never forget both Indian and Pakistanis of all religions have contributed both culturally and laid down there lives as volunteers for the freedom of all in the UK and Europe.   So please be mindful to the fact before you feel the need to say that Islam has no place in our nation.

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Mutant X, The mixed race gene theory.

I have been seeing a lot of focus at the moment on persons who  are of mixed race.  Since Mixed race persons have been included in statistics and we have now been given a little box to tick on our equal opportunity form.   We have now become a Britain newest fastly growing minority.

I feel a little mixed up about the way I feel on this subject.   The word minority describes me as being different to the majority, mixed race persons only making up three percent of the population of the UK.

The truth is that their has always been a high number of persons who are of duel heritage As far back to when the british empire was trading with India and involved in the african slave trade.   but it seems to me we have been dismissed by society and denied a national identity because we have not been recognised by British society as being British.     It is a simple factor that through government statistics on equal opportunity the numbers of mixed race persons has only recently started being recognised.

when I was at school and we had a visit by the career’s advisor, this being the first time I had to consider what box I had to tick, left me and both the career advisor baffled as to what racial group I should join,  White British, Irish, Black, Asian, Chinese or other.  I didn’t and will never consider myself white, not because i do not accept my British Anglo saxon heritage but simply because as a whole white british society does not identify me as being white.  In regards to me identifying myself as Pakistani, I identify with my Pakistani heritage but i don’t identify myself as being Pakistani because culturally I am English.

During the last ten years my choice of ethnic origin has widened, from other to mixed race and now the additional boxes mixed afro Caribbean/white and mixed asian/white.   I was originally happy to the addition of mixed race, as it saved me some time having to tick the box other and then completing the section below describing my racial make up.  Then with the addition of  Asian/White left me feeling marginalised again.

You may wonder why I feel this way about equal opportunity forms, so I will explain.

Firstly, when you apply for a job filling out a form to state my ethnic background, if I am married, Gay or have a disability on a piece of paper does not really protect me from discrimination, but only gives a person something to review than discriminate against you.  before you completed the form they did not know your parents originated from Iraq , you are Jewish, lesbian or have a learning disability.  If I felt I was being discriminated against at work because I was Muslim, black or Asian I wouldn’t need a form I signed to prove the fact I am, so why am I filling it out?

Secondly, I would like to give some  definitions of the word ETHNIC;

  • Being a member of a particular ethnic group, especially belonging to a national group by heritage or culture but residing outside its national        boundaries                                         
  • Relating to a people not Christian or Jewish.

This is just  two definitions, but for me the word defines a person who is not white, the others, the ethnic minority.

Lastly, if you are constantly asked all your life by people where are you from, was you born here, are you able to work in the uk, do you have a British passport.  You start to feel a bit hostile to having to reevaluate your social identity every time you complete a form.

It really does make you feel a member of our cultural group who resides outside its national  boundaries.

Mixed race children over the past 65 years have been greatly discriminated against by  society.  Seen as a product of a taboo relationship, something shameful, the word half -caste is a true reflection on how persons whom have a duel heritage  was perceived by society, and still are by some persons. The term or word caste in english comes from the latin word meaning pure, half-caste being half pure.    Even the term mixed  race for me seems not to be a good marriage of words.    I do not feel i am mixed, how can a human be mixed, mixed with what?  Even the word race has prejudice undertones when you look at the definition of the word.   If a person has a irish/russian father and a Scottish/French mother technically they are mixed race but society does not see them as being so because both of their parents are white and they are not an ethnic minority.  If a person has a west indian father and a white english mother they are then are perceived  to be mixed race because one of their parents are of a minority and there for that person becomes ethnic, mixed race.

British plantation owners in the colonies and Britain considered their mixed race children saves and servants, even after slavery was abolished in the 1800’s their mixed race offspring was never considered members of the family.

During British rule of India, mixed race children of British soldiers was not considered British subjects and was categorised and treated as natives of India.

During world war one and two Mixed race persons was not able to be commissioned as an officer in the british army.

In 1944 when American soldiers was stations in britain mixed race children started to emerge as a result of African-American GI’s relationships with British women.  As a result thousands of mixed race children was given up by their mothers and shipped off to the US.

In Australia up and to the 1970’s children who was mixed race, both Anglo and aboriginal was removed from their aboriginal family and placed into boarding schools provided with inadequate food health and social care.

Mixed race person in some church organisations in the uk was not permitted to hold the positions as their white counter parts.  As with the LDS church up and untill 1978 Black men was not allowed to hold the priesthood , enter their temples or take part in certain religious ceremony’s.

This is a very tiny insight to how Britain and the west has looked towards Mixed race persons, you only have to think back to TV from the 60’s to the early nineties to realize how mixed race persons was perceived and treated  by society and portrayed y on television, almost treated as a underclass.

Now the attention is on mixed race persons being genetically advantaged, as there is many athletes and sports persons whom are of duel heritage.   Notions have arisen such as mixed race persons are more beautiful.    Scientists are now referring to terms in relation to mixed race persons such as hybrid vigour and F1 generation.

Were it is important to realize that fascist beliefs (Hitler and the Nazi’s) in a pure and superior race is wrong and children who are conceived as a result of a relationship with a person outside their racial group, will be genetically better off , this being due to natural selection.  This is a simple factor that like animals, if you have a small gene pool it is more likely that you will inherit faulty genes.  so yes a mixed race person is likely to be more physically fitter healthier and more likely to be more immune to some illnesses diseases etc.

It is not rocket science it is a factor that biologist have realized for a long time you only have to look at plants and animals.   I feel dogs are a good example, when you look at different breeds that have adapted either for tasks or environment.  The Alaskan malumute for example is very prone to heart defects and some die young, by breeding  Siberian husky into the breed it will improve the gene pool, producing healthier off spring.

I was a big fan of Stan Lee’s X men comic growing up and for me it truly reflected on me how I felt being of duel heritage, in some way mixed race persons was the generation X.  But I want to emphasize that despite the attention on mixed race persons, we are not X-men, mutants or super humans, neither are we superior to other racial groups it is simply that some of us have had a better chance of inheriting a more varied gene pool with attributes from both racial groups.

Mixed race persons have had to fight discrimination and acceptance on all sides, most of us do not consider ourself one thing or the other, and it is due to this most of us tend to have work twice as hard to succeed in comparison to persons who are racially considered the norm.


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The BNP candidate for Mayor of London

For once in my life I felt wordless after seeing on TV, that the BNP candidate for Mayor of London was Carlos Cartigila.  I first realized by his name he was not indigenous to the UK.     He then started to speak and I realized he was most probably an immigrant to the UK.   That’s  all right with me I am happy who ever decides to run for Mayor, only if I feel they equally represent all the people’s of London.   A mixed race  BNP candidate, I was boggled and felt slightly confused.

Mr Cartigila is a well-educated man after coming to the UK in 1989 he worked for the BBC world service and the foreign and commonwealth office.   He is of both Spanish and Italian ancestry born in Uruguay.  The British Nationalist offered his services to fight against British forces during the Falklands war and now can add joining the BNP  to his list of achievements.

Carlos Cartigila has his own blog sit I may be visiting it soon to ask him a few questions, the first will be what was going through your mind when you decided to join the BNP?   Next I would like to ask him what exactly is your issue with immigrants?

Carlos wrote on his blog:

Look at the partition of Yugoslavia. What has been the argument about who owns Kosovo? This is bound to happen in Britain, especially because they [immigrants] have been building ghettos that usually have their own language, their own customs and their own values. One day, we might find ourselves having to decide who own Birmingham, Leicester, Manchester, Liverpool and parts of London like Towers Hamlets and Barking and Dagenham or even London as a whole.

Read more:

I have put together a letter for Mr Cartigila:

Dear Carlos

I admire your somewhat stupid decision to join the BNP, you must be tired of living in the UK ,  if they are elected to government they surely will repatriate you back to Uruguay free of charge.

Thank you for making a mockery of us the British citizens that are descended from migrants to the UK.  Congratulation on becoming the poster boy for a far right nationalist party.

Please could you answer my questions:

I do hope you are aware that the BNP are a break off from the NF they have had links with the founding  of groups such as combat 18 who was responsible for the fire bombing of the freedom press in 1993 and the  Brixton hill nail bombing attack.

Did you know that far right groups in the UK have targeted persons who migrated from Italy and South America.

How is it you joined the BNP in 2001 but it was not until 2010 when the BNP changed its policy on non indigenous caucasian and non white persons joining your party after loosing a legal battle.

Do you consider Muslim Bosnians immigrants to the former nation of Yugoslavia.

The word Ghetto is of an Italian origin, and derives from the name of an island were Jewish people was made to live in the 16th century,

  •  A usually poor section of a city inhabited primarily by people of the same race, religion, or social background, often because of discrimination.
  • An often walled quarter in a European city to which Jews were restricted beginning in the Middle Ages.
  • Something that resembles the restriction or isolation of a city ghetto: “trapped in ethnic or pink-collar managerial job ghetto’s
Do you realize ghettos are created by far right nationalists wishing to keep poor immigrants or ethnic minorities segregated from the indigenous white caucasian population not because their language, culture or customs drives them to do so.

Kind regards……

I would never consider joining a party or group, buy a tabloid paper such as the Sun or News of the World, be part of or put money into something that has a questionable history.

Because of my feelings I will never buy a Mercedes-Benz because of their use of Jewish slave labour in world war 2.

I will not bank with Lloyd’s because of their connection with the slave trade.

I try to be considerate when buying products, considering fair trade options ( as much as my income enables me to do so).  I wouldn’t buy goods or items that knowingly  promoted forced or slave labour.

This is because I have the choice today to choose and do the right thing, maybe its just me who can not comprehend why Carlos joined the BNP or allowed him self to be used by them in this way to the gain support of a wider audience.

The only reasoning I can give to this is that it is due to his own greed and personal ambitions, does Mr Cartigila have a conscience or any morals, I think not.

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The British Asian Brotherhood

Before 9/11 I felt a fellowship between the diverse ethnic mix that makes up the UK.   Being  the first generation born in England a son of a migrant to the UK, for this reason I identified with others whom families came to the UK as immigrants and some would not  call native to Britain.

I am proud of my fathers nation but not in a nationalist way, I am proud of the people of Pakistan and the history I share with them,  In that same way I am proud of the nations of India and Bangladesh.   In the 1990’s being British born and Asian was something many young British Asian people felt they had in common, I really felt their was a fellowship  between all British Asian people no matter of religion or the border that identified their place of origin.

In the late 80’s and early 90’s the music scene had changed, young people from all backgrounds were coming together in the fight against prejudice and bigotry.   We started seeing bands and artist like Apache Indian, The Asian dub foundation and Corner shop.  Television was changing  and we started seeing British Asian people on terrestrial TV, Liza Aziz started presenting  news bulletins on TV AM in 1989 becoming britain’s  first Asian news presenter, and  when in 1998 Goodness gracious me was first televised, I finally felt that British Asians had a place and identity in british society.

In my Teens I was very lucky to have a brief friendship with another British Asian youth.   His father a very strict and devout Punjabi Sikh, he  would not allow his sons friends to visit the house.  But because of my name and the fact my father’s family came from the Punjab I was made welcome in his home.  It did not matter to them that I had a Muslim name or that I was not a Sikh.   I have a fond memory from my childhood of a real nice guy and his wife who had a newsagent, he was very kind to me and my family and he used to sing a song from a old Hindi film in a comical way to my sister because of her name.   He was a  Hindu it did not matter to him we had Muslim names or the conflict that had taken place between Indian and Pakistan.

In my late teens I worked for a British Pakistani company, a large wholesalers and would see and meet many Asian business owners from different backgrounds.  I used to have a little giggle to myself  when watching the older Asian men meet and greet each other, just because young lads think it’s a little funny and amusing when grown men hug and hold hands.  Again religion did not matter, the fact they all had come to the UK from the subcontinent was the only significance.

I once experienced open and verbal racism and prejudice from a person who was of  British African decent when I was twelve and living in a children’s home,  and again when I was 17.   I remember this incident well just because I had left a nightclub and was standing outside a kebab house eating this very tasty but very greasy donor kebab.  I had met a girl and after the conversation of names had arisen I found out her family was Greek.  A young guy who again was of British African decent started using a word that persons of Pakistani decent would find offensive when being used a certain context,  knowing of my families origin or because she felt a common union in the fight against prejudice, she felt she should defend me and the honor of the nation of Pakistan and its fine People.

I found it hurtful to experience prejudice from another youth or people who have shared the burden discrimination, prejudice or bigotry based on ethnicity, religion or skin tone.

But nothing prepared me for the aftermath of  9/11.   Division grew between the British Asian community and British Asians started distancing their self from Pakistani Muslims, fundamentalism grew and extremists started voicing their opinions on street corners.

I truly believe some British Asian people were afraid to be identified as Pakistanis because of the Pakistanis community’s links with terror training camps, hate preachers and Osama Bin Ladin hiding in Northern Pakistan.

I started to notice a rise in Prejudice between British Asian Communities and an uneasy tension between them.  British Sikh, Hindu and Muslim youths stopped mixing and all of a sudden the media was focused  on areas of Luton and Bradford, they stopped being  British Asian communities and had become Muslim communities with in the UK, populated by only Pakistanis.

Some time after 9/11 I was watching late night TV and on came a party political broadcast by the BNP, I felt some what dismayed that Carlton television had broadcast The  BNP propaganda but not because of the party’s agenda or its connection with its supporters links to violent  racist and fascist organisations.   The reason I was upset was because the man talking was of a Sikh background and the topic of his views was that Pakistani Muslims had destroyed his country India and carried out the murder of  thousands of Sikh and Hindus during the partition of India. His opinion was that they would do the same to the UK.

I felt I had to complain to the TV channel and I did, simply because it was a broadcast with only one message, that Pakistani Muslims were all hateful genocidal murderers determined to gain  world domination.  Not only this but I felt as if I had been betrayed, Betrayed by an old friend, I felt hurt and upset because a fellow British Asian had proclaimed his hatred for me. The person I complained to really could not grasp to understand my disapproval and felt my complaint was insignificant.

I visited a newsagent after the terrible earthquake that effected India, Kashmir and Pakistan in 2005, When I placed the newspaper on the counter the female Hindu shop owner felt she should tell me that Pakistan was being punished by God because what the had done during the partition.

The full facts had not been presented about the partition of India and the violent turmoil that took place during this period of change for both India and Pakistan.

My family being from Lahore I have heard accounts of the partition and the violence, Lahore was effected like no other city on the subcontinent during this period due to it was a richly diverse city.  My family watched as their once great and diverse city was set on fire,  I was told of people who once were neighbours killing each other, people throwing there self down wells,  fathers and sons killing their own daughters and sisters so they would not be raped by a Muslim.  It was a period in history that persons who lived through it, could not talk about with ease or pride.

It was during this period that trains arrived in Lahore full of dead bodies arms and legs pulled off children and babies.  There are accounts of the slaughter of muslims in their thousands all over India during the partition, you will rarely find the true accounts of the suffering of Muslims in  history books.

Yes there was cruel acts of violence, rape,  murder, and acts that bordered genocide on both sides during the partition but it is commonly ignored that Muslim Indians suffered greatly during this time also.

The persecution of poor Muslim Indians seems to be swept under the carpet and widley ignored in India.

So this is why I felt that the political broadcast was an unfair portrayal and the shop owners comments unfounded.

I’m not trying to paint a bad picture of Hindu, Sikh persons or India and this is something I really don’t want to do.  The prejudice is on all sides by a very small minority and the point im trying to make is that prejudice escalated after 9/11 between Muslims, Hindu’s and Sikhs.  The fuel for the hatred seems to be based on the events that took place during the partition.

British Punjabis, Pakistanis Indians, and Bengali  if they are, Hindu, Muslim, Sikh, Christian or Buddhist share a unique and common history, food, tradition and culture.   But what I am seeing all over the internet is mud-slinging, name calling and a real hatred growing between the once brotherly Asian community of the UK.

Why do you feel you have drag up the pain and suffering of innocent men, woman, and children who died because they was of the wrong religion in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Your hatred is as wrong as persons who still hate all German people because of World war 2.

The persons who carried out the atrocities are no longer alive, both sides suffered and you was not born when these sad events took place, you live in the UK you was not born in India or Pakistan.

You probably did loose a family member, but so did the other person.

So why are you angry?

So why can’t you be part of our British Asian Brotherhood/Sisterhood?

In the words of the late and great Mahatma Gandhi:

You must be the change you want to see in the world.

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Being of Both British and Pakistani decent.


I was born in the UK, my mother is English and can trace her ancestry back to 1066 when the Normans invaded Britain.   My Dad came to the UK in the 1960’s, a Muslim Pakistani, so I am of both British and Pakistani heritage.

The question is how do I identify myself, as English or Pakistani.  Well first I would describe myself as British a broad term used to describe all in th UK in a non discriminative way. Without a doubt I am as much English as most, I maybe on my father’s side Pakistani, but I am as much English as a person with a Irish, Scottish or Welsh surname. So in this case I do identify myself as English.  The real question is how society identifies us people of what they call mixed race, a term that is not too nice.

My mother and fathers marriage did not…

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Peter the painter

It’s not a fake, it’s a Peter Blake
It’s navy blue, it’s crimson lake
It takes the cake and no mistake,
For goodness’ sake take a look at those Blakes

Who’s paintings brighten any day, who draws each breath from loving life?
Who’s golden beard and black beret, who’s sharper than a palette knife?

Who treasures every mortal scrap at the Royal Borough of Extremely Thorough?
Peter Blake is the actual chap at the Royal Enclosure of Cool Composure
And such nice beauties do impart from the Royal Exchange of Rare and Strange
The wonders of his noble art at the Royal Tournament of Glad You’re Born-ament

It’s not a cheat, it’s one of Pete’s
It’s Daisy darling, Libby sweet
To ease your mind and soothe your aches,
For goodness’ sake take a look at those Blakes

It’s Peter the painter.

These are lyrics from Ian Dury’s song titled Peter the painter.  My post is all I know of a man called Peter the Painter, a person who is etched in my memory a fairy tale like fellow who I  never will forget but a person I never knew.

Ian Dury’s song Peter the painter is said to be about the artist Peter Blake and I have no doubt that it is.

But When I hear it I always think of a man we called Peter The Painter, you probably think I am talking about the Latvian revolutionary and anarchist known by this name who became a folk law hero in London’s East end  in 1910 after escaping  a police siege on Sidney street.

Well you are wrong the man I am going to talk about was a folk law legend who lived not far from the London’s east end in a town called Romford, if you lived in Romford between the 1950’s and 1980’s you would have known who Peter the Painter was.

Ian Dury lived in Upminster during his childhood and spent his time watching Teddyboy films in a down cinema on the market place.  I have no doubt he probably sore Peter Blundells paintings on display by the bus stops outside the library.

Peter Blundell served in the merchant navy it was said after his death he had been a captain but lost his ticket after an incident and was even said that he was a  millionaire.

It’s hard to ever know the truth but I do know he used to write letters to his family whom believed he was still a mechant Marriner.

It was true he did come from wealth but the gentleman we all knew painted pictures on pieces of scrap wood and cardboard taken from the market, he would paint pictures of ships, draw in chalk and charcoal.  His pictures were always on display outside the library pined to the railings and on the curb.  He rarely took money for his pictures and often gave them away.

Peter Blundell, 'Peter the Painter'

 Peter Blunder, Peter the painter

by S. J. Hotching

Peter slept ruff under a flyover on the A127 and walked everyday to Romford market.  He was a happy chap and never asked for charity.  I remember my mother once see him looking through the bin.   Assuming he was hungry she tried to give him 10 pounds, a lot of money in the 1980’s.  Peter told her calmly he did not need the money and she should keep it.

His belief is that he only needed enough to eat a humble meal.

In the 1970’s he was made an honorary member of  Romfords chamber  of commerce and presented with a certificate at Romford’s town hall.

The library workers were very found of him and used to club together to buy him a christmas box, S J Hotching painted a picture of him that is on display in Havering’s museum, his pictures was displayed in the a gallery in the Romford central library and London weekend television once done a biography on him.

I don’t know how many paintings he sold or painted but i can say it was many.

He was a man of the road who called Romford his home.

A jolly and noble fellow who liven up the market with his presence.

He was a true hobo a man of the road who classed Romford his home.

Peter Blundell died in the late 80’s at Old church hospital of phenomena, I just hope his legend will live on in the story we tell our children.

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Being of Both British and Pakistani decent.

I was born in the UK, my mother is English and can trace her ancestry back to 1066 when the Normans invaded Britain.   My Dad came to the UK in the 1960’s, a Muslim Pakistani, so I am of both British and Pakistani heritage.

The question is how do I identify myself, as English or Pakistani.  Well first I would describe myself as British a broad term used to describe all in th UK in a non discriminative way. Without a doubt I am as much English as most, I maybe on my father’s side Pakistani, but I am as much English as a person with a Irish, Scottish or Welsh surname. So in this case I do identify myself as English.  The real question is how society identifies us people of what they call mixed race, a term that is not too nice.

My mother and fathers marriage did not last long and they was soon divorced.  My father was denied custody on the grounds he may of left the country with us, and custody was given to my mother whom had mental health problems and soon myself and my siblings was placed into care.  We was quickly simulated into normal British culture, myself and my siblings was the only children in the home that was made to attend sunday school, we was served pork during meal times even thow we had muslim names no attention or thought was given to that factor.  I only had white English  foster parents whom one  refered to me saying I was not British but Indian, they would not even allow a Asian person through their front door and fed  me Bombay pasties because they thought I must like the taste of curry powder.  I grew up in an area with but only a few persons of other ethnic origin and knew nothing of my Pakistani heritage.  When say nothing I mean nothing, I knew no words in Urdu and knew nothing of  Muslims or Islam, I couldn’t even find India on a map. I experienced much prejudice and racism growing up both from adults and children and more than often it was violent motivated because of my name and the tone of my skin. I put up with retold jokes by Bernard Manning aimed towards me by parents at the school gates, received racist comments from teachers whom would encourage a comment made in the class room. Growing up during this period was not as simple for myself as it was for other young people, going out the door you took the chance of being taunted and called a Paki, chased by teens who decided to do a bit of Paki bashing, spat at or even punched in the back of the head by a stranger as you walk through the market.  My first memory moving to a new area was me and my older sister being chased and caught by a group of teens around the age of  fourteen shouting get the Paki’s and my sister was made to watch while they beat me up because they didn’t hit girls, I had only had just turned eight years old.

Into my teens it didn’t get any better other than the intolerance had toughened me up and some had become cautious of starting a fight with.  As any normal male teen I became interested in the opposite sex, but most girls wouldnt of taken me home to meet the parents due to their hangups on race and colour. Getting a job when leaving school was hard most employers were interested untill I told them my name or were the name originated.  I was often asked was you born here, and after I said yes they would reply oh that’s ok then.  Ticking boxes on ethnic origin, asked were I am from really hasn’t made me feel to British and excepted by English society.

During my late teens I found a job working for a British Pakistani company were I was embraced by the Pakistani friends I made there whom gave me an interest in both Muslim and Pakistani heritage, history and culture.  I know prejudice goes both ways and I have found it among Pakistani’s because I am of mixed heritage, but generally  I have found all Asian people are more tolerant and excepting of differences.

I know this sounds a bit of a rant, but before I go on I just wanted explain what it  is like experiencing and  knowing real racism and intolerance first hand, when you identify yourself as British but society sees something different. If you havent experienced prejudice in some form or the other you can’t truly know how it feels and the thin line between racist organisations and nazi storm troopers

Intolerance is at large again and now being aimed at British Asian Muslim minority and community’s, since the sad and distressing events that took place on 9/11, Islam has been demonized and fundamentalism has risen, British Asians have removed them self from association with Pakistani Muslims and division has grown between them. intolerant political party’s and organisations like  the BNP and EDL have taken advantage of this to stir racial tension  acting on the insecurity and  fears of the working classes.  This is not a new thing in Britain Enoch Powell done the same thing in the 1960’s to escalate his own political career, some my say he was demonized, but if you read one of his speeches you will see he probably done this to himself.

The EDL stated that no Pakistani Muslims had fought in any world war.  This is not true, The British commonwealths army was once made up with a huge three percent made up of Punjabi Indian Muslims.  You will find the names of Indian Muslims among the names of the war dead in France from both world war one and world war two, they died in a foreign land far from home to ensure the freedoms and rights of the British people.  The British Indian army halted the Japanese from advancing into India under British rule.  The acts of terrorism as we see today is a product of political issues in areas like the middle east and  not because of Islam.  Religion has always been used as a tool politically to seed a cause to rally people to war. Jihad is a term that is misunderstood and incorrectly quoted, during the middle ages both sides used the term holy war.   A fundamental if you like of Islam is something that is fundamental to the religion and fundamental to Islam is the ten commandments, one of which is thalt shalt not kill. The value of the gift of life is something that all Muslims hold dear.  Would we call the IRA Catholic extremists, or say that you can’t be Jewish and British,  no because most are kind good people who follow the teachings in the holy bible as do Muslims. In this case you can be both British and Muslim, I feel religion and nationality are two entire different entity’s and in no way conflict.  Islam teaches us that we should show inner and outer purity,in our actions as well as in our mind, we should be good kind and just towards all, show no malice, hate and not act out of anger towards others.  Show compassion, charity, tolerance and love.  It is a sin to take any life including your own and in the eyes of god  all are equal no matter of ethnicity, race or social status.  Moderate Muslims are the minority but because they are not standing on street corners shouting hateful propaganda they become the silent minority.  extremist whom are the minority shout loudly on the streets becoming the herd majority and people believe they are they views of all.  Young people in areas like Bradford, Luton have been conversed into having extreme views by an ideology that does not reflect  Islam probably due to their own insecurities with not finding acceptance in our society.  Prejudice and discrimination only gives fuel to the rise to people looking for some form to vent their own anger and prejudices.  So please to all let use all look towards what we have in common and stop finding differences to divide us.  To the EDL I as a British Muslim offer my compassion love charity and forgiveness because you are my countrymen and woman brothers and sisters and we should not be divided by differences but should find common ground for union to heal the scars of conflict that threaten to destroy the social fabric of our democratic free nation.

Rudyard Kipling wrote…….

Yet there is no East and there is no West, border nor breed nor birth, when two strong men stand face to face though they come from the ends of the earth.”

I feel this is a good place to finish, thanks for reading.

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