Unabated Specter of Colonialism in FATA

Waqas Mamtaz02The Annexation of Punjab made the way clear for the Britishers to execute the forward policy in Waziristan without a huge cost. It was the year 1848 that eventually the annexation reached to its completion; after the death of Ranjit Singh, and, in the result of that, Fata falls into the direct influence of British.  Moreover, Punjab’s productivity and the tussle between Russia and British on the region ignited the course of cold war. In the result of this, and the immediate influence of British polices on FATA made everything up-side-down; the consciousness, which every society achieve if not be disturbed, was disturbed, likewise, the culture discontinuity also made the things more than worse. In this manner, the forward policy had put an end to the consciousness and to the cultural continuity, and also left a lasting mark on the area in the shape of FCR.  However, Pakistan, after liberating itself from the yoke of British, labeled itself with Post-Colonial era. Thereupon, new form of governance become an aim to achieve, and hence achieved. But what about those parts of country that still, and yet a lot more, have to witness the British so-called old laws.

FATA seems to be like a litmus paper by which the Government of Pakistan wants to check the creditability of British polices. Would it be remained intact through the ages to come?

The lamentations of FATA’s people can easily be understood by understanding the Vico’s slight views about Culture: every culture moves with own pace and own way, and in such way reaches to its highest point ultimately; in the same order, every society unfold itself to consciousness. But neither of the mentioned characteristics were left to consummate the highest point.

Importantly, the distinction between Colonialism and Post-Colonialism discourse is important to shed light on. For this purpose ‘Ania Loomba’s’ work is quite approachable. According to her, it might seem that the age of colonialism is over, and by this regard, the whole world is postcolonial. And the second important point of view is if the inequities of colonial rule are still not erased, then it is perhaps ridicule to proclaim the demise of colonialism or the rise of postcolonial era. By this perspective, FATA is yet not entered into the orders of post colonialism. Because however you look on to the circumstances of FATA you will find out ample of instances that are replete with inequities.

However, the remnants of British policies once again renovated by Pakistan’s polices towards Fata. It is clear without any doubt that their culture and consciousness once again disturbed. Pakistan’s policies have reconstructed the remnants of British polices which shadowy the life of common people. Notwithstanding, the forward policy, which was aimed to curtail life of local people, caused havoc all around and thus many time resulted in unprecedented resistance. In the same perspective, if we look at the current circumstance of FATA, particularly Waziristan, we realize that history repeat itself and sometime in a more bitter way. The current Waziristan is not much far away than its own history which is brimmed with bloodshed. In other words, the current circumstances reflect the history of Waziristan very clearly.

Philosophically speaking, Kant, who is one of the renowned philosophers of time, stated that history moves towards rationality. Keeping in mind this outlook, one starts contradicting when compare the current scenario of Waziristan with that of the bygone’s scenario. Ironically, on the other side of the coin, it hits once intellect, because the world truly moves towards rationality. And therefore, living in the rational world the death rate and everything bitter is enhancing as the days moves on. This is the thing which makes the miserable people hopeless. Would the world be utterly plunged in soreness as it moves towards rationality?  Don’t the rational beings try to put an end to all irrational things? Such questions make people unanswerable even in this rational world.

Consequently, not only Fata, but all those areas where human life is in miserable conditions should be brought under the limelight of humanity. Besides, religion without humanity is very poor human stuff.

Writer: Muhammad Waqas Mumtaz

The writer is a student of history at Government College University Lahore (GCU). He can be reached at



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