Politics of protests and agitation | By Dr Muhammad Khan

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Politics of protests and agitation

WHEREAS the peaceful protest is the right of every citizen of Pakistan, creating disturbance in the routine functioning of the state and routine life of the masses is a serious crime to be dealt as per law of the land.

For over a week, the road blocks and dharnasat multiple places by the Protestants of a political outfits has created an uncomfortable situation for the people travelling to various cities especially the capital city, Islamabad.

This undesired protests and politics of agitation have forcefully closed the educational institutions, offices, hospitals and work places for everyone in twin cities.

The international law and law of the land prohibits obstruction of any route, road or any passage way meant for the masses.

As per the provisions of law, any person or a group commits the offence of obstructing a road and other public passage has to be dealt bitterly.

It is serious crime in the teaching of Islam, which constitute the ideology of Pakistan.Islam is all about spreading peace and love among humanity.

The crux of Islamic teachings is; the best among you (Muslims) is the one whose mere existence is beneficial for others (human beings).

Therefore, creating troubles for others humans is against the essence of Islam and its teachings.

Besides, obstructing roads or other public passages is a Class C misdemeanor which warrants immediate and strict action.

From the perspective of democratic process and promotion of democracy in the country, the politics of protests and agitation is very dangerous.

Such a process would give way to undemocratic thinking and a radical mindset which would like to achieve everything through use of force.

In a way, politics of confrontation and agitation on roads and cities is a great threat for the democracy of Pakistan.

In democracy, the decisions are taken democratically in the parliament after debates on various issues.

Parliament is the supreme institution of the country where all decisions should be made for the state and its inhabitants; the people.

These decisions have larger and broader coverage of the constitution of Pakistan.

Whereas, agitations, protests, road blocks and use of force are illegal acts and goes against the spirit of constitutional provisions.

The legislatures, legislations and elected representatives (Parliamentarians) must follow the constitution and debate all national, provincial and political issues in the parliament, as per the constitution of the state.

Opting to resolve the issues on roads and streets of the cities through politics of antagonism and pessimism is never a good option.

It is a declaration for the rejection of democracy and undermining the forum of parliament.

In the past, a similar method was adopted by the same political outfit for months which defamed the state while setting the wrong precedence forothers, especially the future generations of Pakistan.

This process is neither a national service nor democratic in nature. Indeed, such a process is called undemocratic act and western scholars are frequently referring it as the political Islam.

It is worth mentioning that, restoration of former Chief Justice of Pakistan (Justice IftikharCh) was materialised through such an undemocratic and uncivilized process.

The former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif used this practice, after he was deposed by Supreme Court.

Moulana Fazulur Rehman opted for the politics of agitation and protests in 2019. The party head of the JUI (F) tried his best to drag the institutions towards his political end.

This is highly immoral and below the dignity of a dignified person to put at stakes the state and its institutions for his own political gains.

If there was a wrong precedence set earlier for the political gains of any political outfit, it should not be followed by a political outfit enjoying the support of majority of the masses.

The failure on the part of Pakistani politicians is that, they have been involved in a negative politics for their personal gains, rather strengthening the state and empowering the people of Pakistan.

In Parliament there have been no debates about the future strategy of the state, its security issues, its foreign policy formulation, its falling economy and above all, how to educate and create jobs for 65% youth of Pakistan.

The unemployed youth of Pakistan is either used by these political and religio-political parties for their political aims as daily wagers or else they are used for militancy by militant organizations, sub-nationalists and others anti-state forces.

In the absence of farsightedness and a clear future course of action among the top leadership of Pakistan, the state of Pakistan is in dire straits. There is a political polarization, social fragmentation and economic desolation in Pakistan.

This all is happening for the personal gains of few individuals, few families and mostly for their petty gains rather pursuing the goals of the state (Pakistan) and its masses.

It is high-time that people at the helm of affairs should realize their responsibilities towards the state and its 220 million people.

Let’s be mature now and make such laws which protect the state, its interests and the basic and fundamental rights of the people of Pakistan.

Let’s stop playing politics of agitation, violence, aggression and pessimism.

Besides, let’s stop blocking the public places, roads and highways, which restrict the movement of masses, patients, students and the poor working class.

In the entire process the central theme is; the state (Pakistan) is more important than few individuals, few families and cynical political outfits

— The writer is Professor of Politics and IR at International Islamic University, Islamabad.

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