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  • The State of Islamic Radicalism in Pakistan

    The soil of Pakistan, because of its culture, customs, traditions, values, the temperament of the people and even state policies, provides the ideal ground for Islamic radicalism, extremism, sectarianism and terrorism.

    March 2013

    Mahendra Pande asked: How India views the coming of Muslim Brotherhood into power? Would it give rise to Islamic extremism?

    P.K. Pradhan replies: Ever since the popular protests against the regime of Hosni Mubarak started in Egypt, India has expressed its support for the will of the people of Egypt. Now India is ready to deal with the Muslim Brotherhood in power in Cairo and has shown no hesitation in doing so. After the elections, India welcomed the verdict of the people of Egypt and congratulated its leader Mohamed Morsi. India’s External Affairs Minister S. M. Krishna visited Cairo in March 2012 and chaired the sixth India-Egypt joint commission meeting. He met the top leadership of the country including the Muslim Brotherhood leader Mohamed Morsi. During Krishna’s visit, India and Egypt signed four documents on cooperation in the field of environment protection, cultural exchange, agriculture and standardisation. Both the countries have also identified areas, such as, trade & economic cooperation, science & technology, culture and information technology, to further strengthen their cooperation.

    It would be too early to predict the rise in Islamic extremism with the coming of Muslim Brotherhood to power. It is expected that Muslim Brotherhood will practice moderation and rather conduct itself as a responsible political party than an underground Islamist organisation. The party has promised to build a modern democratic state and is under pressure to satisfy both the conservative elements and the secular-minded sections of the Egyptian society. A lot depends upon the direction in which the party and the leadership would like to take the revolution.

    Evaluating the Political and Economic Role of the IRGC

    The Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) is Iran's most powerful security and military organisation, responsible for the protection and survival of the regime. Over time, the IRGC has attained a position of dominance vis-à-vis the regular army (Artesh). In due course, the Guards have also been transformed into a leading political and economic actor. The major political role of the IRGC started with the election of the reformist presidency. However, the Guards' involvement in the Iranian economy began during Rafsanjani's presidency.

    July 2012

    Political Islam: A Critical Reader by Frederic Volpi

    At the dawn of the 21st century, political Islam has become an influential religious and social force in many post-colonial states, from North Africa to South East Asia. In the context of war in Afghanistan and Iraq, and the ‘War on Terror’, much has been written. Little has been written, however, to enable a holistic understanding of political Islam. Though some work has been done by Western scholars like Olivier Roy, the post-9/11 world has a different dynamic in which political Islam is used by terrorists to set the global discourse on the West's treatment of Muslims.

    March 2012

    ‘Old’ Islamists and ‘New’ Radicals: Understanding the Politics of Religious Radicalisation in Pakistan and its Implications

    The new radicals in Pakistan have challenged the old Islamists as represented by the religious political parties on the nature of state and the means to capture state power. These new radicals reject the ‘bottom up’ approach followed by the traditional Islamic political parties and prefer a ‘top down’ approach. Their ideological inspiration and reference point is Afghanistan under Taliban.

    July 2011

    OIC Astana Session: Emphasising Change and Action

    Though the Astana meeting reflected a change in the OIC’s approach and understanding of the issues and problems of the Islamic world, lack of concrete action would lead to a further loss of credibility for the organisation.

    July 14, 2011