Archive | May, 2012

The Future of Pakistan in Gillani’s hands?

14 May

I just got done with my Public Law Exam at Edinburgh University a few days ago, when i heard about this interview Yousaf Raza Gillani (who i refuse to refer to as PM Gillani) gave to CNN. When you’re studying the legal foundations and role of accountability in the UK, you understand what a democratic set-up is supposed to look like. Though its clear, however unfortunate, that democracy in Pakistan is going to take its time to develop, what baffles me is Gillani’s conduct. 

Putting aside the conduct of his sons, what with the Hajj and Chemical scandals, it is important to focus on what exactly Gillani and this PPP government have done – what essentially their conduct represents. It represents a mindset which democratic actors cannot even imagine; a twisted logic which is the premise of every action or lack thereof. When a convict has served his time, or infact even when the conviction is just announced, it isn’t normal to see him being garlanded outside the Court which convicted him, especially not the highest court of the land. The Supreme Court of Pakistan upheld the laws of the country, which have been disrespected time and time again by this government. Under Article 63(1)(g) of the Pakistani Constitution, Gillani has been disqualified, as per the criteria set out. For him to avoid resigning from his office, is not only despicable conduct, but manifests the complete and utter lack of ministerial responsibility in Pakistan. In other democracies, where there is even a slight implication of misconduct on the part of a minister, let alone the Prime Minister, one is expected to resign, and as per the respect for democracy in these countries, they do.

Moving on, trying to let go of the garlanding of a convict and his refusal to resign, his interview on CNN was just a disaster. I’m not even going to bother talking about how unprofessional and disrespectful the interviewer was, but what i will emphasise on is that i have never heard the “Prime Minister” of a country being spoken to with such disrespect and through such offensive conduct. Gillani, at first, seemed to really understand the concept of democracy – “WILL OF THE PEOPLE,” as stated in his OWN words. Then he decided that him and his cabinet were in a position of better judgment as to his resignation. What was the real kicker though was when he said that those unhappy and deprived in Pakistan, who have expressed their desire to leave, should just leave the country. So basically, because the government has been unable to govern and perform their role in economic and social development of the society, Pakistanis should have to leave instead of the ineffective government accepting its mistakes? The twisted logic i had made an earlier reference to is evident in his answers.

When will the people of Pakistan finally be given the chance to prosper and develop, as a society? The answer definitely inclines me towards the only political party ready to bring an ideological change. It is the party of the people which understands their problems that is the need of the hour. So next time Pakistan, vote wisely so we don’t have a “Prime Minister” who tells us to leave the country if we are unhappy!

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