- Hold your horses; for you will falter
It is often said that “one step in the right direction is better than a hundred in the wrong”.
As much as it makes sense, it contains a meaningful message for all in general, and our national leadership, we call government, in particular.
On Monday, upon consultation with Mian Shahbaz Sharif (leader of opposition in National Assembly), the leader of PML-N, Mian Nawaz Sharif, turned down MMA and JUI-F chief, Maulana Fazal-ur-Rehman’s invitation to participate in person in the opposition’s All Parties Conference (APC) in an attempt to unite, and pressurise the government. While he agreed to send PML-N’s delegation, to be led by Raja Zafar-ul-Haq, to attend the APC, the former deposed prime minister, perhaps, stands wise in his political judgment to abstain from launching an aggressive campaign against the PTI government. Not only because it’s too early in the day for a no-confidence movement, but because the seasoned politician could see the government itself doing harm to its cause, and taking steps (more of mistakes in their nature) that are adversely impacting the popularity graph of PTI among the public. Losing previously won-over critical constituencies to the opposition in the by-election is quite a wakeup call by the nation. However, only the government, apparently, is unaware of these realities.
Whereas Prime Minister Imran Khan had promised “tabdeeli” (change) to the nation, supposed to alleviate the haplessness from the midst of the common men through the shouted-out-loud abnegation of bad governance, now in power, and in-charge of state affairs, seems to be either unaware of the misdirection of change promised by PTI, or is unwilling to redirect the so-far destructive tsunami. Given the fact that he is the PM of Pakistan, and a man willing to change things for the greater good, let us extend our support to the country’s leader, for now, and not give in to the latter consideration. The PM, perhaps, is unaware, and being rather misled by the people around him.
Kings, or what we call as leaders in our day, often meet their doom courtesy blind faith, and giving in to the ill-consultations of their advisors.
Yesterday’s problem, even today, stands tall. The chief justice has to do what the people vote the PM in for
The case of PM Khan from taking charge of affairs till date, ironically, seems to be a mere analogy to the aforementioned reality. A good leader not only appoints competent and credible advisors, but is wise enough not to merely rely on their words, but see the greater picture, and good himself.
While the nation was barely attempting to recover from the aftershocks of utility (gas, and electricity) price hike, petroleum prices have also gone up, which will certainly add to the misery of the common man. As per the very basics of economics that we know; gas, electricity, and now petroleum, in addition to their own price hike, would further fuel the fire of inflation already rampant in the country. Something PM Khan opposed throughout his political career, particularly during his election campaign, promising to lessen the unjust burden on the middle, and lower classes. This ultimately voted him in to power. In power now, the PM is merely counting on his numbers man, Asad Umar who is no more than a picture of utter helplessness.
One is compelled to question that are these price hikes, whether for gas, electricity, or now petroleum even justified in light of the financial aid of $3 billion that Saudi Arabia has announced, along with oil worth $9 billion for next three years to come?
If these questions can arouse the average intellect of a common Pakistani, so should they do to the PM’s. PM Khan, rather giving in to the humble request coming in, must stand strong, and committed to his promises to the nation. For the nation not only watches, but judges!
The misery caused by price hike, and its news was not enough that the nation came across the brutality unleashed by Senator Azam Swati, federal minister for science and technology, upon a poor family that allegedly became a grave threat to the security of his lavishly armed guards. Their cow that had astonishingly trespassed into the high walled and barred farmhouse allegedly caused severe damage to the trees, and was hence seized by his guards, and perhaps, this remains the case till date. The poor family members, four of them, were put in jail on account of harassing the armed guards of the federal minister. A shameful act of lie and brutality. The arrested family members were, however, released amid the minister’s sons extending their apology to the harassed family, and the tribal Jirga. Not to anyone’s surprise, fear of media trail, and pursuance of this case by the apex court triggered this retreat.
This was only one side of the story, however.
The other side is equally disturbing, as it yet again negates PTI’s tall claims of reforming, and strengthening institutions via independence from political interference.
The Inspector General of Islamabad police was sacked by PM on account of federal minister Azam Swati’s hue and cry about the officer allegedly neither responding to his phone calls nor calling back for 22 hours. Let us not forget that the IG Islamabad police was in Malaysia attending a workshop. Upon being looked into, it had been found that the IG had talked twice to Azam Swati on the issue, and also nominated an SSP to personally meet the minister, along with visiting the site of incident to look into the matter on justified grounds. Records of phone calls are also available, as per some sources.
An irony to the core that remained dominant in Purana, as well as Naya Pakistan is that without any investigation into the matter, a high ranked official of the civil service was sacked, that too bypassing all procedural formalities.
The change promising PTI, and its presumed progressive political leaders, are merely democratically elected kings, as in the past.
The issue was, as always, taken up by the esteemed Supreme Court, and the respectable Chief Justice Saqib Nisar, who not only suspended the PM’s order to transfer Islamabad IGP, but ordered an inquiry into the matter; which will surely be pursued in coming days by the apex court.
Yesterday’s problem, even today, stands tall. The chief justice has to do what the people vote the PM in for. It is high time for PM Khan to acknowledge, and take notice of the party’s declining graph in the public, look at its reasons, and stand principled rather than seeking justifications, and ways out for wrongdoings of his own cabinet members.
The public, for sure, did not sign up for this not-so-tabdeeli. Hold its horses now, or it will falter!