Nincompoop leaders & live masses
It has angered the politicians –depicting it as a call for imposition of Martial Law.. This is a selective picking of his words. The statement has two parts. He seems to be saying that given A, B can follow, The A being existence of Wadera rule labeled Democracy, prevalence of massive looting of wealth and stinking corruption by these waderas-politicians, break down of law and order, subservience of the country to US, defective foreign policy etc. He seems to be saying that if this situation persists then B is should follow i.e .taking steps to treat the malaise Continuation of this situation can lead to a national upheaval and suggests some remedy. There is consensus that A is reality but what is opposed is that Hartial Law be imposed as a remedy is only on B. The scene has become gloomier during the floods when the regime and political leaders were viewed by the flood devastated people as having failed to rise to the occasion, in fact added to their misery by making breaches in the course of the flood to save their land.
It is ignored that mere holding elections is not the end all and be all of democracy. This is just the start of a journey. The real hall mark of democracy is good governance, ameliorating the living conditions of the masses etc. Labeling a regime democracy does not make it democratic. In the Communist rule of dictatorship of proletariat, they used to label it as “People’s Democratic Republic” emphasizing its democractic claim three times emphasizing like if you do not believe one may be you could believe any other adjective. There is no question that democracy is far more desirable than any other system. .It is forgotten that the much maligned ‘Objective Resolution’ states that : “Chosen representative of the people (shall) exercise power “.
“The principles of Democracy, freedom, equality, tolerance and social justice as enunciated by Islam shall be fully observed” Democracy was put as fundamental principle of State by Liaquat first PM of Pakistan. As any historian knows when a system broks down, two things happened , either a military take over or a bloody revolution. Every body knows that there can be sick democracies. Even the father of philosophy of democracy Aristotle has said that democracies can become sick .Ours is a sick democracy and its sickness is that in it the interest of the wealthy and big landlords dominate and each election held under any system has brought the same faces and interests have come up as the “representatives” of the people which is a misnomer. Corruption has continued to grow at an alarming rate under the present regime, breaking all records. In the past it existed in low officialdom, then it ascended and now it is rampant in the “people’s representatives” and “the pillars of the regime”. It is obvious that elections cannot remove the hold of Waderas and prevalence of corruption in the pillars of regime. Then how can one go on hoping that future elections will remove the corrupt system. What is required is a law abolishing the land lords and making the tillers of the land its owner.
Systems have changed either from inside or through upheavals. We have seen that the elections have only consolidated Khans, Maliks, Choudhries, Waderas . .There seems no hope that the “election” democracy will eliminate the hold of Waderas. They killed Liaquat fearing that he was to declare end of big land holdings .Will any body tell how many poor or middle class won elections ? It is not the ability or service to the people but money that wins elections. There is absence of ordinary educated people among the Elected. The leaders have stacked their money abroad, own property abroad, their homes abroad, their children studying abroad, and on top of it quite a few have dual nationality
Pakistanis have come a long way in political consciousness and they are no longer willing to accept the Waderas as people’s rule how so ever it may be glamorized by one name of the other, or offered slogans for substance. The manner in which the public and civil society has moved to help the flood victims shows it is a very alive nation while the so-called people’s representative have failed to shoulder their responsibility. The manner in which the common man, civil society and the media took up the lead in the flood relief activities , paling the regime into insignificance, the common Pakistani of today is not in a mood to tolerate the present order. It is likely that when the floods are over and these million have-nots return to their devastated homes they may become a match stick for a demand for a change. They will not like nincompoop leaders to rule them. The possibility of a French Revolution- like upheaval cannot be ruled out. .
Can the regime take any action itself to ward off the backlash? Yes, it can try. The only democratic antidote in such situations is a mid term elections. This is not possible in Pakistan under water. Alternatively, the regime should take a merciless self criticism and acknowledge that it has lost people’s confidence I recall that when I went in ZAB’s Delegation on his African tour to explain the Bangla Desh secession , in 1972, Sekou Toure the Great African leftist leader recounted in extraordinary details the mistakes Pakistan had made in handling East Pakistan. He said “ Mr President, recently I lost an election which surprised me. I said what went wrong with me. I searched deep the causes on my defeat in that constituency and then in next election I did not lose that Constituency. You should have done the same,” In the same spirit the regime must go for drastic changes in in-house leadership, change of faces in leadership, dropping dead wood from the cabinet, a catharsis of policies, drastic merciless surgery drastic reduction in the cabinet, removal of the “Advisers” , strict economy in government expenditure, and such measures Any thing less than this would not make any difference in the regime’s image, Let the Rulers see that a storm is waiting to engulf the country soon Bringing a law to abolish land lords should be given the highest priority..
I might end this article by expressing surprise that such a nationalist as Nawaz Sharif’ has added three wars with India to the evil deeds of Martial law “ ” This is factually incorrect. It was Quid i Azam who had asked General Gracey to march troops into Kashmir to stop Indians after the Indians had air dropped its troops in Kashmir. Gracey refused to act. . Later, it was Liaquat Ali Khan who ordered the Army to intervene in Kashmirwhen the C-in-C of Army was a Pakistani, when Indian forces were seen moving to Pakistan’s borders. Pakistan told the UN of this compulsion to act. The three wars Pakistan fought with India were on Kashmir. They were counted as national wars. Entire nation stood like one man in 1965 India-Pak War, in 1971 what led to muddling the East Pakistan crisis was Indian involvement in East Pakistan, “Mukti Bahini” infiltrations, etc cannot be forgotten and cannot be ignored. Criticizing these wars means acknowledging Indian claims that Pakistan was aggressor in all wars with it.. Kargil may be excluded from the legitimate wars with India but we went to war with India each time for legitimate reasons . Insinuating them as wars of aggression implies Pakistan was aggressor in all three wars. As any body knows Kashmir is the jugular vein of Pakistan because the rivers of Pakistan flow out from Kashmir.