Vision: Charter of Medina


Ashraf Ansari

Imran Khan in his victory speech has outlined his vision of Naya Pakistan (New Pakistan). Nucleus of his vision is building Pakistan into a welfare state. The term ‘welfare state’ is not a vague idea or an abstract slogan. In a welfare state, the state policies are centred on the objective of working for well-being of the ordinary people, allowing no privileges to any segment of the society. The method for moving towards the goal of a welfare state is simple enough but in a country where the influentials have long enjoyed privileges, it would need relentless action.
The Founder of Pakistan, Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah had envisioned a welfare state of Pakistan. Quaid’s 11 August 1947 address to the Constituent Assembly clearly reflected his vision of Pakistan to be a welfare state rooted in pluralistic and inclusive structure. While Imran talks of the state of Medina founded by Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) after signing of the Charter of Medina by all stakeholders of the state including Muslims and non-Muslims. Unfortunately the Muslim rulers over centuries by passed the Charter of Medina that provides a solid legal basis for raising legitimate structure of the state. Now that Imran Khan commits himself to the ideal of Charter of Medina, he may be destined to create history. Turning to the foundation of the state founded by the Prophet (PBUH) himself, will usher in renaissance of the Muslim political thought. That will clear all confusion that has persisted for centuries about contours of a Muslim majority state.
Imran Khan in his speech explicitly mentioned his action programme that would ensure good governance, accountability across the board, efficiency of the state institutions and a culture of honest and simple living. This programme is in sync with the needs and dreams of the ordinary people of Pakistan. Obviously this programme holds perils for the privileged classes who are used to sucking blood of the state as parasites.
The defeated political leaders are out to preempt the ‘Imran Doctrine’ by all means. The APC in Islamabad on Friday was planned for this purpose. Maybe they are scared by the promised accountability mentioned in Imran’s speech.
For Imran Khan, the best strategy would be to remain focused on his action programme, caring less about uproar of the frustrated politicians. As he moves on with his action programme, his public support will gain more and more strength. His action programme can only be fruitful if it is operationalized step by step and on the basis of a well-known adage First Things First.

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