Institution-bashing continues

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DESPITE repeated assertions by the leadership of Pakistan Army that the institution is apolitical and no effort should be made to drag it into murky politics, some vested interests continue with Army-bashing taking refuge behind ‘fake’ news.

The Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) on Wednesday rejected claims made by a journalist insinuating that PTI Senator Shaukat Tarin was asked to switch sides and abandon the PTI-led government at the centre.

In a statement, it said peddling malicious allegations and blatant lies against the institution and its leadership to promote vested interests is condemnable and the institution reserves the right to take legal action against those involved.

It is a foregone conclusion that those spreading fake and fabricated news and maligning the national institutions are doing disservice to the country and, therefore, must be proceeded against under the relevant laws.

One fails to understand how a concocted story was circulated on the social media when the man quoted in the said story (former Finance Minister Shaukat Tarin) himself categorically rejected it.

The journalist pinpointed in the story is not alone to be blamed as, on an almost daily basis, some otherwise credible names are found involved in kite flying and issuing direct appeals to the institutions to intervene in the political affairs of the country on this or that pretext.

Similarly, some politicians are also in the habit of launching scathing attacks against institutions in furtherance of their political objectives.

We have repeatedly been emphasizing in these columns that the strength of a country is directly reflected in the strength of its institutions and, therefore, no effort should be made that could cause misunderstanding between the institutions and the general public.

There is a strong perception in the country that institutions like Parliament, Judiciary, National Accountability Bureau (NAB) and Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) have already been discredited purposefully by vested interests and that they are not as powerful as envisaged in the constitutional scheme of things.

Internal polarization is assuming dangerous dimensions with serious consequences for security, stability and economy of the country and, therefore, institutions should restrict their role to what is envisaged in the Constitution and there should be zero-tolerance for those targeting and maligning institutions for the sake of petty political interests.

 

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