There has been a vicious cycle that has gradually become a norm in terms of our political dynamics. Every political party that comes to power falls into the same rut. It initiates its own development projects, diverts immense capital into them, and makes them their focal point. Though there is nothing wrong in initiating new developmental projects, the real problem is in making them the ‘focal point’, as everything else recedes into a blur, including all the initiatives that the predecessors took.
While the unfinished grey structures of those projects stand in a never-ending stage due to lack of funds, the ones that had been already completed are no less of a canker for the new office-holders. There is no denying that throughout the world, there is a tendency among fresh governments heading into their own direction but that does not normally happen at the cost of the national interest.
Take India, for example. It has shown considerable maturity by not confusing personal venom with national interest. The orientation towards becoming the ‘next Silicon Valley’ started years ago under a different leadership, but it has continued under the same set of principles despite the change in governments.
These set of principles were not some complex economic agreements, but a mere understanding of the actual politics; not the politics that is driven on half-cooked Machiavellian principles, or the politics that makes political leaders rush to cut the ribbons of half-done projects. It is not the politics that wilfully slows crucial projects just to make a point.
Now, when we read this, we cannot help but relate them all with our dear country and conclude that the line between the dos and don’ts has definitely gone blur, or was there ever a line? We saw multiple inaugurations of the same Orange Line train.
We saw Safe Cities Authority, a state-of-the-art project, roiled by vacuum of funds lost somewhere between ‘finance and home departments’ of Punjab government, leading to a shutdown of several cameras across Lahore.
With the musical chair for the prime office continuing and a new premier in the house, the trend is not to shift much. However, projects, especially the health card initiative, is not something worth losing in the mayhem. There is a need to realise the economic fragility and the huge national capital that has already been invested.
Masses ending up with nothing in the end except another failed promise would not serve anyone. There is a need to realise the complete lack of health-related facilities in the country.
We need to do away with petty politics of momentary self-benefits over the interest of the people. Though old habits die hard, there is nothing wrong in hoping for the better.
The government must realise and set a precedent. It must realise that the people are not to be punted aside by the glib talk anymore. They understand the rhyme now. They see through the curtains of the sombre political manoeuvring.
They have been the victims of such brute politics for too long now. Therefore, the office-holders must realise that the people, who brought them to power in the first place, end up suffering the most and not their political opponents. And now it is time the people were no more made victim of such politics.
MALIK AHMED HASAN