Thursday, February 26, 2015

Let's Grow as a Proud Nation

SPECIAL EDITION

Constantly, the people of Pakistan are being subjected/roughed up by a variety of mafia groups. Democracy is only the name of the game; there is power-mafia focused on political power, others include land mafia, and extortionist (Bhatta) mafia. Maybe, weakening the commercial hub is part of the strategy. Any unlawful wealth that these thugs generate ends up becoming their effective passport to enjoy respect, power and influence.
Tragedy is the miserable populace is inherently set up or is manipulated to continue remaining deprived of a good feel of the concept of nationhood. Sadly, the nation-building effort remains only in the books. Unless remedied, the concept of nationhood remains a misconception.

Most probably, people are driven strategically by the hidden hand to keep them divided along regional, ethnic, linguistic, and religious lines. So, expecting good results from bad harvest doesn’t make sense.
Unfortunately, the military/civil rulers of the past came to fix the wrongs but all disappeared leaving the status quo intact. And, the current rulers face governance challenges. Administrative paralysis is all time high.

Equality is missing: Major culprit is lack of equal opportunity of quality education to all regardless of ethnicity, colour, creed, or socio-economic level.
Shamefully, the ruling elite and religious leaders have exploited the banner of Islam to attain and retain power without ever trying to reform state and society in line with its egalitarian principles.
Issue of East Pakistan was mishandled by Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto and the then Military Chief, and there is a lesson but it’s forgotten. No one seems to have learnt.

Moreover, there are vested interests, state or non state actors that are bent upon making Pakistan a sacrificial goat under all circumstances. They don’t want Pakistan to progress economically and Pakistan doesn’t know how to convince the international community about the rape it has been constantly subjected to.
After the projects of Kalabagh dam and Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline are shelved, the proposed “Pakistan-China economic corridor” faces criticism and opposition. This non sense political wrangling is detrimental to Pakistan.

Messing up will be costly: The $45 billion Pakistan-China Economic Corridor was termed as a flagship strategic cooperation project, a potential game changer in South Asia. If completed, the corridor would connect Gwadar with Chinese city of Kashgar through highways, rail link and oil-gas pipelines as expected, however, the uncertainty shrouds the mystery.

Pain in the neck: The political mafia knows every trick of the trade and loves dynastic politics. They manage very well using “clichés of democracy” as their best defence whenever they are challenged.
Though, they claim their commitment to genuine democracy, yet it’s best reflected in how they handle their political parties.
Actually, it’s nothing more than a fake democracy where civil politicians are apparently the worst dictators because they want their kids to inherit the party. In other words, democracy becomes the best revenge in their dictionary as it gives them an opportunity to further rob and plunder the wealth of this country. Not funny, but the sad part is that they find allies among the many good people who are part of media and civil-society organisations.

Constant attempts to undo Pakistan: Foreign sponsored terrorism as well as the sectarian differences have added fuel to the ongoing fire and all is blown out of proportion under state patronage. Definitely, it poses an existentialist threat to Pakistan.
Mr Jinnah said, “If we want to make this great State of Pakistan happy and prosperous we should wholly and solely concentrate on the well-being of the people, and especially of the masses and the poor... you are free- you are free to go to your temples mosques or any other place of worship in this state of Pakistan. You may belong to any religion, caste or creed that has nothing to do with the business of the state... in due course of time Hindus will cease to be Hindus and Muslims will cease to Muslims- not in a religious sense for that is the personal faith of an individual- but in a political sense as citizens of one state” ._. Address to the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan, Karachi ...August 11, 1947*****

In response to Zarb e Azb, the terrorists are on a suicide bombing spree throughout the country, while the chief terrorist is hiding in Afghanistan.
Pakistan needs a tighter disciplinary policy to catch those involved in money laundering. Money laundering is a criminal offense and Switzerland is a signatory to the law as is Pakistan. If a Pakistani court can indict particular individuals, then Switzerland is bound to disclose the holdings. And, there is tons of misappropriated money deposited in UAE banks by the Pakistani rich elite, but irony is Pakistan government has no objection. There is no serious effort on the part of government to bring back money looted from the Pakistani exchequer.

Furthermore, politicians have huge amounts of deposits in the U.K., Switzerland and Dubai. Several billions in U.S. dollars means a lot. Pakistan will be saved from economic disaster if the loot is brought back using all legal channels.
In order to keep the country intact and put it back on track, the political leadership has to show some wisdom and think only what is in the best interest of the people of Pakistan. The gaps must be bridged to avoid disasters.
History has proof that the political differences between the two leaders culminated into the disintegration of Pakistan in 1971.
There is no doubt in my mind that building dams and roads is essential for economic development, but nation-building should be treated as priority before it’s too late.
For a stronger Pakistan, the federal government must address concerns of the smaller provinces by protecting their political and economic interests.
The foreign sponsored separatist insurgency in Balochistan has to be overcome for a smoother development.

A rapid development of Gwadar will give satisfaction to the local populace. The projected economic corridor must go ahead successfully till development in Gwadar is broadened.
Groundwork on the project has already begun, the federation of Pakistan must address any misconceptions surrounding it on priority basis. For Pakistan’s sustainable economic development needs, the politicians must refrain from helping the growth of negative hype around the Pak China project.
It’s imperative that the stakeholders are on single page to play their role in developing a national consensus for the economic corridor.

The Pakistani people are in need of a democracy that not only ensures fundamental rights and rule of law but also has inbuilt mechanisms where there is no such thing as defiance.
“With faith, discipline and selfless devotion to duty, there is nothing worthwhile that you cannot achieve.” (Jinnah)

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