By Waheed Hamid
Pakistan went for elections 2013 with a debate that is Pakistan a nation on collapse and a failed state. Pakistan ranked number 12 on a list of the “most failed states”, published in annual report of Foreign Policy magazine in 2011.The amount of corruption, misdirected leadership and forecasting of intellectuals would have synergized for a normal nation to actually collapse but what keeps Pakistan from sinking remains a question unanswered. Stories of Taliban ruling Islamabad and taking control of country’s nuclear weapons to threaten the world are not old but time has proved them to be far from TRUTH. The truth of brilliant upcoming generation in form of enthusiastic young force “Janoon” with Arfa Karim Randhawa and eight year old Uzair Jaswal beating Microsoft experts somewhere remain on low burner. The election 2013 witnessed youngsters persuading old parents who never voted in their life to come out and vote for Pakistan. However, the failing infrastructure and absence of good governance, corruption cases, prolonged electricity shutdowns, declining economic and social indicators keep strengthening the gloomy perceptions. How many have really researched to find truth remains a simmering question. In 2006, 30 terrorist attacks, including 10 of a sectarian nature, took place, leaving 100 people dead and 230 others injured. In 2007, 34 terrorist attacks and clashes, including suicide attacks, killings, and assassinations, resulted in 134 casualties and 245 injuries, according to the PIPS security report. Pakistan faced 20 suicide attacks (mostly targeted at security forces) during 2007, at least 111 were killed, besides injuring another 234 people. The statistics show a progressive increase in extremist activities starting from 2006 and sudden decline in the recent years. After success of Swat operation and settlement of displaced people of Swat the violence fell by 60 per cent in the second half of 2009, compared with the first half. Overall the sense of security in Pakistan improved. In IRI polls the number of people saying that they felt less secure fell from 78 percent to 60 percent in the March 2009 poll, while the number saying that they felt more secure rose from 19 to 38 percent. This was further augmented by a survey of Pak Institute for Peace Studies (PIPS) which said the number of violent incidents and terror attacks in Pakistan fell by 11 per cent during 2010, compared to 2009. The security force did it what analysts thought was not achievable.
Despite long stand off the solution of NATO supply route issue proved that Pakistan stands as the most logical and economical out let to the world in this region. Despite serious differences with world powers operating in Afghanistan the U.S leadership finds Pakistan, the most important country. Hillary Clinton said in a press conference that “I’m sure we will continue to have our ups and downs. But this relationship is simply too important to turn our back on — for both nations”. Nature has gifted Pakistan to become a challenge for the world and it is only Pakistanis which can convert this challenge into opportunity. The successful conduct of elections and the quantum of increase in turnout show seriousness of the Nation to address National issues. It has been a large cross- section of individuals in Pakistan, the expatriates and the business community which are directly and silently contributing to the sustainability and strength of a future looking prosperous Pakistan. This silence has to be broken and translated for enhancing national pride and individual motivation by giving recognition to the silent Patriots.
The shortfall in power is not only at top agenda for the government , One of the largest urea manufacturing public limited business in Pakistan has recently come up with Pakistan’s first wind power 50 MW electricity generation project in District Thatta, Sindh to help Pakistan overcome power shortage . The wind turbines and electrical equipment have already arrived at site, successfully installed and will start functioning in few months. This pilot Project, shall not only provide cleaner sustainable energy and help address electricity shortage in the country but will open avenues for alternate energy systems in Pakistan. Unfortunately, a Pakistani cries and bleeds at hands of corrupt practices which effects majority of society. Few benefit and successfully make others hostage to this corrupt culture. These few play with emotions of majority from rich as well as poor segments of society and use tools and techniques to convince that progress only lies in moving in line with the corrupt culture. The government will have to identify and synergize the efforts of individuals , professionals, institutions and industries running in right direction and support them. Pakistan has seen Crisis and pressures which has helped foster a change in its politics. The political setup seen after the election has a natural system of check and balance and it provides a strong hope to the nation . Imran And Nawaz both have the opportunity at National and provincial level. The time will prove how they utilize and deliver.