The meteoric rise of TikTok has seen teenagers dedicating hours daily, hoping to achieve virality through hashtags and trends. Among these influencers, a prominent Christian minority is making waves, using the platform to showcase their talents and amass significant followings. These Christian influencers, revered by their audience, have become modern-day icons. Their followers feel a deep connection, believing they have intimate knowledge of and regular interactions with them. The influence these figures wield is undeniable.
However, while we applaud these Christian social media mavens, it's essential to remember the significance of August 11th, 2009. This date marks the National Day of Minorities, a day set aside to honor the invaluable contributions of minorities to the foundation and development of Pakistan. It was in 2009 that the Government of Pakistan officially designated August 11th as National Minority Day.
Two pivotal Christian figures come to mind, reminding us of the historical contributions of Pakistani Christians: S P Singha and Shahbaz Bhatti.
Dewan Bahadur Satya Prakash Singha (1893–1948) was the Speaker of the united Punjab Assembly during colonial India and later Pakistan. An associate of Muhammad Ali Jinnah and a member of the All India Muslim League, Singha played a crucial role in ensuring Punjab's inclusion in Pakistan, casting the decisive vote.
Shahbaz Bhatti (1968-2011), the first Christian Federal Minister for Minorities Affairs, was a vocal advocate for the rights of religious minorities in Pakistan. Founder of the All Pakistan Minorities Alliance (APMA), Bhatti's outspoken stance against the nation's blasphemy laws led to his tragic assassination in 2011.
As we commemorate those whose sacrifices and contributions are often overlooked or omitted from our educational curricula, it's crucial to ensure their legacies are not forgotten. Christian TikTokers have a unique platform and responsibility to educate their followers about the significant contributions made by Pakistani Christians. Notable figures like Group Captain Cecil Chaudhry, a renowned fighter pilot and war hero, and the numerous high-quality hospitals, schools, and colleges established by the Christian community, are testaments to these contributions.
It's disheartening to think that some might believe that Christians have no place in Pakistan or that our forefathers contributed nothing to its foundation. Christian TikTok influencers should take pride in highlighting the significance of the white color on the Pakistani flag. This color, representing minorities, should not be marred by protests or calls for protection but should stand as a symbol of unity and the sacrifices made by our ancestors.
In conclusion, while living in despair and feeling inferior is a life of ignorance, we must remember and celebrate the contributions and sacrifices of our Christian ancestors. Christian TikTokers have a golden opportunity to use their platform to educate and inspire, ensuring that the legacy of minority contributions to Pakistan is never forgotten.