Naya Pakistan and the Murree tragedy | By Tariq Aqil


Naya Pakistan and the Murree tragedy

IT IS now vividly clear that the ruling clique led by Imran Khan is fast losing its grip on all the important national issues ranging from price control, unemployment, inflation, terrorism and the basic function of providing security to the common man.

The Govt. in power appears to have lost touch with reality and the future looks extremely uncertain for the ruling party. The Govt. of PTI can be credited with a long list of failures in governance and rule of law and it now appears that the future of the country is also in danger if this slide into mismanagement and incompetence is not halted immediately.

The PTI govt. was elected in 2018 with great hopes and expectations and sky high optimism for the future but they have failed to deliver on all counts and now even the diehard loyalists of Imran Khan are backing away from their support and loyalty to the party of the tabdeeli Sarkar.

Imran Khan’s Utopian dream of Riasat-i-Madina or a new Pakistan was in ruins once again when thousands of innocent Pakistani citizens were caught in a snow storm in Murree.

This was another man made total failure that resulted in the death of 22 people. This was another classic example of bad governance, mismanagement and total incompetence of the Federal Govt. and the Punjab Govt. and this tragedy highlighted the total disconnect between the ruling party and the ground realities.

To add insult to injury the Federal Information Minister Fawad Chowdry had the nerve to say that the economic recovery achieved by the PTI Govt. had allowed more Pakistanis with the means to afford a holiday in the hill resort of Murree.

It goes without saying that the PTI Govt. of Imran Khan is guilty of gross incompetence, cruelty, mismanagement and lack of empathy in all areas of public service. This tragedy brings out the truth that the country today does not have a functional Govt. at all. The Govt. of Imran Khan should now wake up to the reality that they are supposed to perform their administrative duties and functions instead of blaming the innocent citizens who were the victims of this horrible tragedy.

Like always the huge army of sycophants in the form of Ministers, advisors and special assistants started to spin their tales of concocted versions about the tragedy that had claimed so many lives and tried to defend the callous attitude of the Govt.

In the past the remarks of the PM regarding rape cases in the country, the victory of the Taliban in Afghanistan, the brutal murder of a family by police officers in Sahiwal, and the motorway gang rape the latest Murree tragedy has once again exposed the ruling clique as a govt. without any sense of responsibility or empathy for the people who elected them to rule in their name.

The Murree catastrophe should not be used by the Govt. to reopen the tragic wounds of the dependents and survivors of this horror.

By refusing to accept responsibility of failure by the Govt. and shifting blame or making flimsy excusesis nothing but rubbing salt in the wounds of the survivors and the dependents of the dead victims of the tragedy.

In the aftermath of this gruesome tragedy the Govt. spokespersons and spin doctors were once again harping on their old tune that people lost their lives because the previous PML (N) govt.

failed to improve the infrastructure of the areas. People are now sick and tired of hearing this that all the ills in society are because of the PML (N) and the economy is inruins because of the Sharif Family.

The fact is that no such disaster took place in the time when Shenbaz Sharif was the CM of Punjab because he ensured that the Govt.

agencies and departments performed their assigned duties with diligence and responsibility. Snowfall this year was no more than three feet whereas there have been days of over seven feet of snow during the rule of the previous govt.

and yet there was never any loss of life or damage to property because the chief executive of the province personally ensured that there was enough machinery and man power available to deal with any problem that may crop up because of inclement weather. The Present CM of Punjab has just bothered to have an aerial view of the area after the tragic catastrophe, like some medieval potentate on a tour of his kingdom.

The only credit that can be given to the present Govt. is making tall claims and failing to deliver on all counts. It appears that this govt. has run out of steam and the Murree tragedy could be the proverbial last nail in the coffin of this hybrid regime of Imran Khan.

The writing on the wall is that the people of Pakistan are now looking forward to vote out this Govt. the tide is turning before the next general elections.

—The writer is Professor of History, based in Islamabad.

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