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

Smruti S. Pattanaik is Research Fellow at the Manohar Parrikar Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses, New Delhi. Click here for detailed profile
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  • July 2011

    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. This paper explores the relationship between the state and Islamists historically and examines how the state initiated Islamisation, in the process giving birth to new radicals that cashed in on the state's failure and posed an ideological challenge to the Pakistani state.

    Pakistan ka matlab kya? La illah ilallah

    (What is the meaning of Pakistan? There is no God other than Allah)