Politicians ignore principle of moral ethics

Audio leaks are revealing the moral emptiness of both sides

Political philosophers of the past opine that some immoral activities such as deceit, theft and falsehood are the principles of politics. According to their sense, a good leader should be a good opportunist and hypocrite.

This duplicity in politics continued for a long time, but in the modern era, by bringing contentions of politicians and bloody wars of rulers in our bedrooms, the social media made it difficult for them to continue this at the cost of their own people and armed forces.

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Regrettably, since the present political crisis started on April 9, when Prime Minister Imran Khan, Chairman of the Pakistan Tehreek Insaf (PTT), was ousted through a vote of no-confidence, politicians of the PTI and an alliance of the PDM follow immoral activities of the past. Setting aside Pakistan’s present multi-faceted crises and challenges, they have changed their political differences into political enmity by ignoring the principle of moral ethics.

A study points out: “Moral principles are the foundational beliefs behind moral standards. Morality is a subset of ethics, a branch of philosophy that approaches right and wrong issues through logic and reason…is concerned with individuals and communities’ right and wrong behavior…The democratic health of a nation lies in the ethical nature of its citizens and political representatives— fairness in politics, honesty, loyalty, integrity and exemplary behavior.

In this regard, a renowned website Dylo.In (Daily Bite) wrote on December 21: “Multiple audio leaks [of the former Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan] have already taken the sheen out of his projected image, that of an honest man. The latest leaks target his projected image, that of a reformed playboy who is deeply religious and profoundly pious in the true Islamic way. Recordings of his explicit phone sex calls with multiple women have been leaked to the pleasure of the connoisseur of the lasciviously lurid. The Internet does not forget…his lust of a sex addict for his woman colleagues. A conversation purportedly between Imran Khan and a woman party leader, is quite revealing. There are political insights in his conversations sprinkled in what’s largely a phone-sex call recording. Two of the three recordings are purely sexual and have nothing political about them.”

Recently, media disclosed: “The Ayla Malik and Imran Khan story has many twists, alleged audio leaks only latest…In 2011, she joined Imran Khan’s PTI…The phone recordings doing the rounds on social media in 2022 are most likely from this period, when the two were extremely close.”

Imran Khan’s previous wife Reham Khan in her book said that Imran had to break up with Ayla Malik after Ayla Malik’s boyfriend asked him to either marry her or leave her.

Ayla Malik also quitted Khan’s party in 2017, stating that PTI was no longer pursuing the policies of public welfare.

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And PTI is being investigated for receiving foreign fundings which is forbidden for political parties in Pakistan. In the documents submitted to the court, Ayla Malik was shown to have received Rs seven million from party funds, for no explainable reason.

Notably, several audios from the Prime Minister’s House have been leaked online in a span of few months involving PTI and the incumbent government. Another audio leak was of Imran Khan’s wife Bushra Bibi in which she talked about the controversial Toshakhana gifts. Bushra, played a key role in selling a number of gifts, including a watch, the ex-PM Khan received.

Ironically, although the country’s politicians in the PDM have forsaken all values and ethics of justice, fair play and morality, it is more surprising that the former Prime Minister Imran Khan who wants to make Pakistan Riyasat-i-Madina has totally ignored the principle of moral ethics.

Reportedly, the two-part audio clip was shared by Pakistani journalist Syed Ali Haider on his YouTube channel in which Khan can be heard engaged in phone sex with a woman in lewd language.

The first audio related to the PTI was leaked on September 28, in which Khan allegedly told his then-principal secretary Azam Khan to play politics on the US cypher. On social media the ostensible voice of Khan can be heard as saying to his party’s top leaders that “under no circumstances the country where the conspiracy emerged from must be named.” The second PTI audio leak came to the fore on September 30, which allegedly exposed Khan’s conspiracy narrative.

In fact, in his various public rallies and statements, former Premier Imran Khan has almost repeated a similar contradictory approach, while criticizing his rival politicians, the Pakistan Army and its former COAS Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa.  He rapidly takes a u-turn.

In the recent past, in his various statements and public rallies, PTI Chairman Khan has repeatedly mentioned his vision of Riyasat-i-Madina (state of Madina).

Speaking on the second day of the two-day National Rehmatul-lil-Aalameen Conference on January 17, 2022, Khan stated: “Rehmatul-lil-Aalameen Authority was formed to make youth familiar about the life and teachings of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).”

He elaborated: “We can rise as a nation by following the guiding principles of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) [who] raised the level of morality in society and created the distinction between good and evil. Muslims of Riyasat-i-Medina had high moral standards and were endowed with values of justice, equity and rule of law.”

He regretted that the moral and ethical values were gradually eroding, thus giving space for corruption…the rising cases of sex crimes in the country.” Khan vowed to stop harassment of women by men.

Nevertheless, Khan’s guiding principles of Riyasat-i-Madina in connection with Pakistan are quite opposite to his contradictory statements and audio leaks which show his double standards.

It is mentionable that Linda Tripp, the former US civil servant whose secretly taped telephone conversations with a former White House intern Monica Lewinsky, documented the sex scandal between her and the then President Bill Clinton.

The Washington Post on 18 August 1998 pointed out that President Clinton, who earlier denied it, acknowledged that he had an inappropriate relationship with onetime intern Monica Lewinsky and deceived the American people about it.

According to the BBC, “Former President Bill Clinton claimed that his affair with Monica Lewinsky was a way of managing his anxieties. Mr. Clinton was impeached in 1998 for lying to investigators about his relationship with Ms. Lewinsky. He was acquitted at his Senate trial.”

It is noteworthy, the new audio tape leaked on social media on October 13, purportedly featuring PM Shahbaz Sharif in which he can allegedly be heard conversing with unidentified person. The person is heard telling the premier that Ayaz Sadiq claims the PPP members are demanding a share from the quota of the SAPM (Special Assistant to PM). Shahbaz is heard replying, “Yes, of course. Bilawal said so.”

On September 25, two more audios were leaked on the social media. One of them was related to a discussion about the PTI lawmakers’ resignations and the other was about former finance minister Miftah Ismail.

Similarly, earlier on September 13, a leaked audio went viral on social media— allegedly featuring Premier Shahbaz, Rana Sanaullah, Defence Minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif, Sardar Ayaz Sadiq, and others— containing a discussion regarding PTI’s resignations. They are also talking about London’s permission to accept the resignations.

Before that, a leaked audio had gone viral on social media, allegedly featuring PM Shahbaz, that contained a discussion regarding PML(N) Vice President Maryam Nawaz asking for a power plant from India to be imported for her son-in-law.

Prime Minister Shahbaz has instituted a high-power investigation committee to probe the issue; particularly the leaks which involved the PM’s House and the data hacked from there.

Nonetheless, PTI leader Musarrat Cheema defended Khan, saying that whenever the former prime minister takes a difficult decision, his fake audios are leaked. Some PTI leaders have termed the latest audio clip aimed at blackmailing the PTI, including all other ones as ‘fake.’

Ironically, although the country’s politicians in the PDM have forsaken all values and ethics of justice, fair play and morality. But, it is more surprising that the former Prime Minister Imran Khan who wants to make Pakistan Riyasat-i-Madina has totally ignored the principle of moral ethics. 

Sajjad Shaukat
Sajjad Shaukat
Sajjad Shaukat writes on international affairs and is author of the book: US vs Islamic Militants, Invisible Balance of Power: Dangerous Shift in International Relations and can be reached at [email protected]


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