Naveed Aman Khan
YET to reach 40, Mir Mohammad Sadiq Sanjrani is the youngest ever Chairman of the Senate of Pakistan who hails from the province of Baluchistan. On 12 March 2018 preceded by honorable Raza Rabbani Member of the Senate of Pakistan, Sanjrani set a new chapter in the history of Pakistan. Sanjrani was elected Member to the Senate of Pakistan as an independent candidate on general seat from Balochistan in Senate Election 2018. He received 57 votes out of total 103 votes cast and defeated veteran politician Raja Zafar-ul-Haq, candidate of the PML-N who could obtain 46 votes only. Sanjrani was voted into Chairman position by the PPP, MQM, PTI and independent Senators from Balochistan and the Federally Administered Tribal Areas.
Chief Minister of Balochistan Mir Abdul Quddus Bizenjo, after long tiring efforts succeeded in mustering favour of the PPP, PTI and some other parties for Balochistan’s candidate for the Chairmanship of the Senate. After the recent Senate election, the Bizenjo-led group of independent Senators elect from Balochistan raised the demand that the top office of Chairmanship of Senate be given to their province. The group nominated Sanjrani as its candidate for the post of Senate Chairman and finally PPP Chairman Bilawal Zardari announced that Mr Sanjrani was his party’s candidate for the top slot of the Upper House of Parliament too. Sanjrani’s name was circulating in the federal capital as candidate for the office of Chairman since the independent Senators-elect from Balochistan reached Islamabad and Chief Minister Bizenjo launched a campaign for him.
Thanks to Mir Mohammad Sadiq Sanjrani and his colleagues who created difference by defeating the mindset of political elite, who throw workers and leaders like anything when they disagree on democratic principles. Independents have paved way for a new political hope to people and workers that they can achieve political might if they become united thus shattering the myth of undemocratic control of the tainted leadership, bent upon ruling by hook or by crook. Major parties intended to use the strength of independents for their political gains; interestingly it was resulted in the opposite that surprised the analysts and political pundits. The strategy adopted by the independents made major players defeat including PML-N, PPP and so much so PTI.
Calling himself a ‘simple’ man, Mir Mohammad Sadiq Sanjrani will be able to cross the benchmark set by his predecessor Raza Rabbani, who during his tenure emerged as a symbol of custodian of democracy, supremacy of constitution and parliament? This is the primary question which is craving people. An overwhelming majority has hailed his election and appointment as Chairman Senate from Balochistan despite controversies. To my surprise, I have not so far come across to any blame, allegation or aspersion on the integrity of Mr. Sanjrani which is a rare quality at a time when the leaders who call the shots themselves are shrouded with graft charges. I earnestly pray and hope that Mr. Sanjrani would come up to the expectations of the nation who have been betrayed and maltreated by so-called political stalwarts and that he would remain unblemished in the days and months to come.
Some object his entry to one of the highest constitutional posts adding the wheeling dealing aspect to it in view to portray a one-sided picture of the political scenario, may be because of their selected notion, understanding, liking , disliking of persons or facts. The current Senate election has set a new trend in our political arena where independent members have set agenda of the game. Instead of becoming stooges of various political or more precisely ruling parties or succumbing to their pressures and lures, they formed their own alliance and brought Balochistan to the forefront. That actually foiled the original game plan of ‘Ek Zardari Sub Pr Bhari’ rhetoric on one ousted Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif’s nominee on the other. Thus, the independents have shattered the myth of becoming a commodity in the hands of the powerful political club.
The ‘political spin doctors’, when the tables were turned coined a new logic of Sadiq Sanjrani being the Zardari’s candidate ignoring the fact that PPP Co-Chairman actually had strived with tooth and nail to get Mr. Mandviwala elected as Chairman. The independents strategy have actually introduced a new ‘ political doctrine’ of not yielding to the major political parties whose chairman can throw persons like Raza Rabbani and Farhatullah Babar who proved their principles at all odds within and out of party at any time or under any pretext. To some, the recent example of Senate election was a trailer before general election which is not very far away as the interim government is expected to be placed in June if we follow the laid down procedure. The reason of Senate example is not very difficult to understand if we carefully and impartially examine the political landscape of our beloved country.
The major parties, irrespective of their agendas, logics, processions and justifications, have actually disappointed the masses including the political workers. In close door meetings leaders and workers from all the mainstream parties don’t mince words expressing the dictatorial attitude of their leadership. One asks a question that why our analysts take pride in endorsing opinion of the so-called democratic leadership of the political parties who never care the decades long standing of a political worker with the party and its ideology? Why the leadership of the parties was not accountable to any platform whatsoever? Why it is that always those are condemned and criticized who refuse to sell their soul to the whimsical decision makers? Does democracy mean to us that we shall always be standing in the queue with a begging bowl of reverence from the ‘Political Lord’?
— The writer is political analyst based in Islamabad.