Disgusting! Is a mild expression | By Zaheer Bhatti

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Disgusting! Is a mild expression

LOOKING at the goings on in this often censured piece of land liberated in the name of a separate homeland for the Muslims of the Subcontinent, one wonders where this nation is heading, with each one of its basic pillars styled as the principal national institutions without exception, not missing taking it out on each other and dirtying their linen in public in the process.

‘Disgusting’ is a very mild expression for the abominable behaviour of leading parliamentarians for their conduct in the Holy precincts of Roza-e-Rasool (SAWW) in shouting filth at the ‘now in power’ delegation on way to its homage to Masjid-e-Nabawi where the remains of the last of the Holy Prophets rests in eternal peace, and regrettable that Imran Khan did not come out with an instant apology for this conduct unbecoming of his followers, worst still that the PML(N) rulers decided to proceed against the former Prime Minister and Sheikh Rasheed alleging their abetting to such indiscretion and threatening to arrest them.

All sides of the ugly divide stand thoroughly exposed, groping for arguments and logic and blaming each other for using religion as a tool in politics, whereas I strongly believe that we as a Muslim nation must draw inspiration and seek guidance from our religious citadel on a 24/7 basis and never lose sight of the basic Articles of our Faith, and not use religion to run each other down.

If it comes to mirroring their past conduct and indiscretion, one may not know where to begin.

Starting some three decades back with Asif Ali Zardari sidelined from politics by Benazir after he earned for himself the Mr Ten Per cent title severely denting his illustrious wife’s reputation, who schemed back into politics after the tragic assassination of Benazir, on the basis of a fishy will never made public which was allegedly left by her nominating her totally uninitiated son Bilawal as the Party Chairman as if the political party thrown up by ZAB was a family affair, but declared to let him initially remain an understudy; struggling for a personal identity and eventually turning hybrid adding both Bhutto and Zardari to his name while Zardari conveniently entered the Presidency himself with the objective of stalling cases against himself of stashing money in off-shore Swiss Accounts, amassing wealth, buying up vintage properties like Surrey Palace and eventually earning the reputation of being a king-maker through horse-trading.

While astonishingly, the entire lot of Party stalwarts happily succumbed to the fait accompli and took the back seat, the great man’s national party has been reduced to a regional outfit taken hostage most of the time by an opportunist ethnic group.

Nawaz Sharif, notwithstanding the tons of money he and his family made by availing the various SROs during his self-serving rule, he posed to break the begging bowl extended to imperial donors with his ‘Qarz utaaro Mulk sanwaaro’ slogan evincing great public response, at a critical financial crunch time freezing Foreign Currency Accounts of his fellow — countrymen but not before taking out of the country his own, some say 90 million US dollars, in one of his earlier stints as Prime Minister ordering an SDO to be arrested for being unable to complete a construction assignment in time and the police officers around him jumping to be the first to handcuff the poor official, dreaming to become the ‘Ameer-ul-momineen’ with a two thirds majority bought out judges to extract favourable judgments; having promoted Gen Musharraf out of turn, habitually locked horns with his Army Chief and made a crude attempt to remove the man in khakis after having promoted him as JCOS after the Kargil fiasco and then on as before, remained sheepish on Kashmir avoiding to even name adversary India in the core issue.

Imran Khan’s PTI which with a clean reputation looked like making a dent in the two-party system in Pakistan, fell foul of its presumptuous homework and lack of an organized team to deliver after being inducted in office, ending up without succeeding in across-the-board accountability to bring back the much trumpeted siphoned off national wealth or instead of coming up with a prudent financial policy, succumbing to the IMF terms.

It merely relied on cosmetics and failed to alleviate poverty and above all refused to negotiate and strike consensus with the opposition on matters of national importance to carry out essential reformatory legislation and failing to recognise that an opposition of his liking would not descend from the mars.

It all seems to be going back to square one after dirty display of lawlessness in the Punjab Assembly, and the 11-Party conglomerate expected to bring immediate relief to the public after getting rid of Imran Khan’s Government, failing to do so and found vainly character assassinating Imran Khan, instead being forced into following suit hoping to match Imran Khan’s power shows clearly indicating that they find no choice but to also get into the election mode.

With Maulana Maudoodi’s Jamaat-e-Islami somehow losing its organizational strength, and Mufti Mahmood’s JUI exploiting the Madaris and trading its religious slogans for positions and privileges and the nationalist parties in the KP and Balochistan like ANP, JWP, BNA, BAP and what have you, choosing to merely lip-service rights of smaller provinces which the principal parties have continued to exploit and the country’s foreign policy taken for a six due to internal squabbles, it is living in a fool’s paradise to expect the country to survive on rhetoric alone, be it for fashioning a Riasat-e-Madina or securing women’s rights, with abhorring erosion of our moral values by the day.

I absolutely loath such headline comments on the so-called Social Diary pages dealing with the Pakistani Showbiz generation such as ‘ Mathira faces severe backlash for her harsh statement on Dua Zehra, a 15-year old teenager putting to dust her parent’ love and affection, attracted to eloping with a social page hideous-looking boy-friend and some half-wit Maulvi tying their knot in Nikah, and the girl apparently joining the ‘mera jism meri marzi crowd, refusing to return home and declaring that she was not abducted and married at her own sweet will.

News outlets must weigh their words thoroughly before passing such verdicts which reflect poorly on their authors rather than the up and coming anchor Mathira’s expressed feeling which only articulated her sense of social responsibility guiding the directionless youth.

Keep it up Mathira! As notwithstanding what your detractors have to say on this, it is a matter of shame and disgust to see our social order being ruthlessly destroyed.

—The writer is a media professional, member of Pioneering team of PTV and a veteran ex Director Programmes.

 

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