Fethullah Terrorist Organization (FETO), blamed for the July 2016 coup attempt in Turkey, and characterised as an unseen terror movement that was slowly injecting poisonous teachings into the innocent brains, apparently in the attire of educational and religious activities all over the world but in Pakistan under the title of Pak-Turk Schools and Colleges. 

Indeed it emerged as a horrible scenario that left the Turkish nation in shock during coup d’état on July 15th, 2016 while reportedly done immense, mental and psychological damage to students in Pakistan, and would be a hidden threat for the entire nation, if persist.

Declaring Gulen movement a terror outfit by apex court in Pakistan was not a simple story, it has a history, a long trail, and as a result – strings attached to a failed coup d’état, that snatched the life of more than 300 Turkish innocent citizens, left 21000 injured, with many thousands traumatized. Turkish government repeatedly accuses Fethullah Gulen, a Turkish businessman and cleric, being behind the coup – a claim that Gulen denies – and accused the United States of harbouring him while experts believe that if Gulen has nothing to do with terror outfit? why he prefers to live in Pennsylvania, United States? and why the US is reluctant to hand him over to Turkey? And so on.

Gulen movement not only made troubles for Turkey, both internally and externally but jolted Pakistan as well through it suspicious presence over well-knitted education network. Since, coup episode in Turkey, many Pakistani students, who either educated in Pak-Turk schools or attending, were mingling in the middle till Pakistan’s superior court made the final call. The legal tug of war and two long years of uncertainty ended, matters of Pak-Turk schools amicably resolved, students, their parents and teachers got the sigh of relief.

Moreover, Turkiye MAARIF Foundation (TMF) announced several benefits for teachers and incentives for students including training, free-education/scholarships, for the talented, orphan and underprivileged, the reduction is school fee by 20 per cent and so on.

Earlier on December 13th, 2018 – Supreme Court of Pakistan, in its land mark verdict at the constitutional petition under article 184(3) of the constitution of Islamic Republic of Pakistan – filed by a prominent lawyer Sohail Sajid, ordered handing over 28 educational entities, their financial, managerial and administrative control along with all moveable and immoveable assets, under the possession of Pak-Turk International Cag Education Foundation (PTICEF), to TMF. Court also ordered the interior ministry to declare PTICEF as proscribed organization under the first schedule to section 11-B of the Anti-Terrorism Act, 1997.

According to judgement, all accounts get blocked/frozen, no transition/transfer of funds from accounts, state bank asked to give custody of accounts and funds held therein to duly authorize representatives of TMF while directed the Security and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) to declare PTICEF, as defunct on account of its illegal and unauthorized initial registration and its affiliation with a terrorist organization and remove its name from SECP register.

The FETO was already declared and accepted; a terror outfit among all Organisation of Islamic Countries (OIC) and members of Asian Parliamentary Assembly (APA), Pakistan as a part of such international organizations, was the signatory to such documents but it was astonishing why any of Pakistani government has not declared FETO as terror outfit? While Supreme Court has taken lead in realizing such move through its historic verdict.

After the decision of Pakistan’s higher judiciary, a new debate regarding private sector schools also triggered. Lots of queries surfaced that – Whether the education sector is sternly scrutinized ever, if not, why not? Should it be under close watch? What curriculum is under propagation? How these schools are working? Who is funding and why? What are the motives for making lots of schools and in some cases in one go? Why they are implementing a special kind of syllabus to young brains? Whether Pakistan’s real history, culture and traditions are the part of that syllabi? What they are teaching? Is it knowledge dissemination or something wary in the name of knowledge? Whether schools are working for profit or to spread knowledge, wisdom and intellect? And, so on……

The PITICEF was established in the 1990s, then under a memorandum of understanding (MoU), signed between the government of Pakistan through the Economic Affairs Division (EAD) during 1999, entered in operations, apparently to disseminate quality education. This was the time when Turkey provided confidence and state support to PTICEF while Pakistan was given full cooperation because of Turkey, along with land, buildings and contributed funds as well to establish schools.

In 2016, Cag Educational Corporation (CEC) was established and after the failed coup attempt, arrests of several hundred Gulen influenced educated individuals and further investigations revealed that CEC was directly involved in triggering the failed coup attempt while CEC has strong links with PTICEF.

After bloodiest but failed coup attempt on July 15th, 2016 – it was claimed by Turkish authorities that CEC has played a major role in youth brainwashing, who later became followers of Fethullah Gulen movement (Gulen hareketi) – a violent army. A general perception suggest that FETO in its power hunger coup attempt was planned decades ago with educational, financial, religious and other means, particularly designed to topple existing Turkish system, destabilize and destroy the country and fulfil their nefarious designs in the region, at a time, when majority surrounding countries were destroyed by vested powers.

It was another fact that after nine-eleven, Gulen movement was spreading faster than ever, though Pakistan was the active part of the counter-terrorism campaign question is why such an organization never has taken under close watch? And, the answer is very simple because it was hidden under the Turkish cover and Pakistan strongly believes in.

This question becomes more vital, imperative and strong that how a child can be easily de-tracked, brainwashed and diverted towards nefarious designs for vested interests? Why in Pakistan, formal, non-formal and religious education sector never taken under close watch and scrutiny, why governments had not fulfilled their core responsibilities, why such organizations are working freely and for what, what’s the syllabus, teaching, methodology and so on. As declared by the court of law, the FETO episode couldn’t stay alive in a country of 220 million people because it’s like nourishing the baby rattles in the backyard, nothing but for destruction.

History suggests that breaking of Pakistan was brokered, planned, established and executed, not in a day or two but long before that actually happened in 1971. Including other factors, Indian influenced Hindu and brainwashed Bengali teachers were especially tasked/deployed to disseminate well-carved thoughts and spread hatred against the state of Pakistan through specially designed curricula, psychologically impacted youth, penetrated state institutions, grabbed politicians in its garb, sow rebellion against the state, and laid the foundation, at which dismantling Pakistan became a job done. Analysts believe that when Urdu-Bengali conflict was started, the education sector has played a major role in exploiting the situation and supported Mukti Bahini through designing literature, providing human resource, sermons in religious gatherings and teachings in educational institutions.

Mukti Bahini, declared as a terrorist organisation field, fueled, established, funded, armed and supported by India as admitted by Indian Premier Narender Modi, in his speech in Dhaka on June 8th, 2015, said, “the establishment of Bangladesh was a desire of every Indian and that’s why India’s forces fought along with the Mukti Bahini, thus creating a new country.

Mukti Bahini was composed of several young Bangalis, whose ages were varying between 15 to 25 years or more and if calculated – the time span between 1947 to 1971, is 24 years, means born in 1947 or little earlier, get grey-education and with thoughts fully established, a young man of 24 years ready to execute policies of masters at strings, which in that case was Indian state.

Pakistan’s own creation was the part of a long struggle. After the sunset of Mughal rule, Muslims were suppressed not only by British invasion of sub-continent but also at the hands of Hindus. This was the prime reason that Muslims fought a war for Independence in 1957 but failed to achieve the desired result. The turning point of history exactly starts here – Sir Syed Ahmed Khan’s real-time effort to educate masses, particularly to learn English, excel in science and move forward. He, from 1859 to 1875, established Gulshan School at Muradabad, Victoria School at Ghazipur, Muslim scientific society, founded Muhammadan Anglo-Oriental College, the first Muslim university in South Asia. These educational efforts were played an effective role in the realisation of Pakistan, after nearly 90 years of long struggle, in 1947.

This all really means that making a right choice, transparent decisions, with real intentions, through right way, for genuine cause and rights, a struggle from within could be right and history itself suggests it in many cases including the creation of Pakistan. But breaking, destabilizing, attacking or ruining, a state, on vested foreign agendas and exploiting sacred areas like religion or education as a prime source to disseminate or even inject such plans into the innocent brains, making them one’s intellectual slave, keep them under permanent influence, then gradually enter them in roots of the state system, secretly armed and prepare them for rebellion, making state within a state and at proper time, ask puppets to execute what string direction suggests something else. Somewhat, the same happened in East Pakistan in 1971 and in Turkey in 2016, both were the acts against states.

It’s no doubt that Pakistan’s higher judiciary has, through its decision, made it clear that this South Asian country will never become the part of those, who intend to destroy any other state or the part of conspiracy anywhere, our soil will never be used against any other nation, and how could it be possible that a nation, whose people, individually, materially, ethically, diplomatically and politically supported Turkish war for independence, Ghazi Mustafa Kemal Ataturk and Turkish nation, today support, a terror outfit like FETO?

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy and position of Regional Rapport.