August 14, 2014

The Illusion of Destiny? By. Dr. Zafar Altaf

Filed under: Uncategorized — sharafs @ 9:36 am

Every now and then Pakistan is at a cross road. Why? In my forty years of service I have yet to see years of tranquility. Our tryst with destiny started in 1947 and through that period till today we have been rocking ourselves so terribly that perforce we do not need an external force to destroy us. This world is full of conflict between nations and within themselves. Much of the conflicts within nations was and is the result of poor to bad governance. Pakistan is in terrible straits and despite what is being argued there is little chance of the situation correcting itself. Should the present government stay? Will the next government be any better? Why this ill will? For one there is massive evidence with Imran Khan and others as well, that property and assets have not been properly acquired or earned. When such a situation arises in which the perception about the country’s leaders is one of deceit and improper behavior then it is difficult to get the public to think otherwise. I have seen this perception and its consequences in former East Pakistan. We lost it to the world that went around that the west was using resources that were generated in the east. The same thing is happening in Scotland where the nationalist party is of the view that the resources generated from the offshore oil rigs in the North Sea are being utilized by Britain. There is a need to understand the difference between excluded development and the use of resources generated in the poor areas but utilized in the rich areas and for the rich. When the two reinforce each other there is dynamite in the social system.

Consider Baluchistan and Ricko Dig the mineral rich where to surface copper the impurity is gold. So it is not only a copper mine but also a gold mine and why should Baluchistan lose their mineral wealth and allow it to be used by Federal government. It is unfair to the people of Baluchistan and it is nearly a decade and still no decision to exploit those resources and place them at the disposal of the provincial government. In any case the decision should not have been with the Federal government in the first place and should have been with the Baluchistan government. We are such goons. The trouble with us Pakistanis is that we seem to know and decide what the others have to do and for our part we have not done anything wrong; ever seen any one at any level accept responsibility. All that we do is deny all wrong doing. There is a flip side to this. The flip side is that the ignorant that finds himself in power is vindictive and malicious to a point that the others point of view is not only not accepted but is jeered at. This is obvious from the current scenario.  The political scene is not such a mess when it is analyzed psychologically and the players that have acquired wealth and riches by any means are not willing to let go even though there is this kind of social happenings. This is a curious nation. When Shaheed BB was accused under the official secrets one analyzed it. The Official secrets act was a colonial document and was for the Quit India movement. When Gen. Zia wanted an act the jokers in the Ministry simply removed the preamble and presented the overnight constructed act. That was funny. Preamble is an integral part of legislation and lays down the macro objectives and purposes of what follows. Similarly I have been stating that we need a Law of Torts so that the rubbish and stinky speakers are sorted out for their malicious and sometimes wild allegations. Because of electronic media there is complete breakdown of decency. All kinds of allegations are propounded. The government uses the machinery of the state for malicious purposes.

Normally in any country there are lobbies and groups but here the rule is that solitarist groups can be and are in every field. In such situations reason is almost always laid down by a powerful group. In the Punjab There are the Ranas and the Kashmiris in an unholy alliance, one replacing the other. Family appointments and the acquisition of resources are common phenomena. What do democratic countries do where such blatant actions are ordered by the highest in authority? It is more of a mockery. What nonsense and rot. These solitarist groups are based on mutuality of interests and there hunger for assets is not satiable. The assets are not limited to the politicians but also to their respective wives and their sons and daughters. In fact the evidence that I have is that their assets are more than the combined efforts of their parents. In fact Pakistan’s corporate sector fell short of their management structure by not including the unborn child onto its Board of Governors. We are what we make of ourselves. No country can help us change our values and attitudes. The nature nurture controversy has been laid bare in this country and by the politicians. Nature is superimposed by nurtured systems. That is the genetic format is helped on its way by the social format for a limited number of families. The politicians have much to be blamed for.

So where is reason in a democratic format in this country? I am least bothered about other countries. But there is no option without choice? Consider what is going on in Pakistan? Can we determine our identity? Is it possible to live in a situation where the self is a part of that choice? A country that does not understand what is proper selfishness. For fourteen months the ruling party had a choice before them but they dilly dallied and the net result has been that the forces that were in opposition finally decided to go on the roads. There has been much noise about the constitutionality of these actions. But the powers that be must understand that majoritarian rule is no longer valid in a modern democracy. People have now started to compare this lot with the tyrannical rule of Musharaf. This present lot brought in Musharaf as army chief when reason and choice should have gone to Gen. Ali Quli Khan. This ruling party does not believe in merit. It never did.

When choice and reason are not working in tandem one has a problem that is difficult to resolve. Social conditions deteriorate. It was so in the East Pakistan affair and it will be so when we next handle any such country wide issue [s]. Grey matter matters. Illusions do not matter.



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