By R R Tanoli
The format of a state is based on its four pillars. If a State is ranked 13th in the list of failed states then it is the visible manifestation of its structural failure. Deformation in the structure is because of the fissures in the pillars. Furthermore the lack of load carrying capacity stresses the pillars to their limits, thus causing the architectural fiasco. If these columns remain intact, they would have an irrefutable immense effect on the political, economic and social standing of a country in the international forum. In a well-designed system, a localized failure should not cause immediate or even progressive collapse of the entire social system.
Look at the size and shape of the pillars, how can they hold the state building? If they are not supporting each other, this mean there is a lack of fidelity among them. The narcissistic morphology has delineated their approach for the beloved country. The megalomaniac approach of our institutions incited abhorrent trust deficit which ultimately resulted in schism and chaos. This bigoted power structure has debarred “THE NATIONAL INTEREST” from the priority list.
Pakistan has a turbulent history since its inception. We remained impatient towards our toddler administration to mature fast for the earlier acquisition of our objectives but our government policies were shambles. Unfortunately the lack of administrative prodigy was turned out to be disastrous because their tasks were meddled by another contender with an aim to salvage it from utter annihilation. If we had trained our toddler the fundamentals of toilet training earlier than they would have soon become independent and confident enough to tackle their problems but the whole administration was nipped in the bud!
According to A .V. Dicey, “There can be no martial law in peacetime”. Unfortunately Pakistan was not the outcome of any major endeavor between the haves and the have-nots because such a contest would have brought a matured political culture and democratic norms to the nation. Elitism has eclipsed pluralism since inception thus no room for political socialization. Inter alia, to cite Ehsan Mehmood Khan, “Pakistan has its own politico-economic and psycho-social environment, peculiar to Pakistan alone. For instance, no country in the world has as much of territory with special status as has Pakistan; Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), Provincially Administered Tribal Areas (PATA) in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Gilgit-Baltistan, Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJ&K), and B Areas of Balochistan have a status different from the remaining bulk of the country. More so, all these have different status from the other.” (Reference: Ehsan Mehmood Khan, Human Security in Pakistan (Islamabad: Narratives, 2013), 57.)
The irony is that the honeymoon of the new administration has always ends soon renouncing the same perturbed society on their own. The root cause is again the trust deficit which has made our people impatient, intolerant and always ready for vehement criticism. Reliance cannot not be there when the government is always run by the corrupt plutocrats who are the custodian of Machiavellian politics. How can one trust them? You keep paying taxes like good little minions and they will devour it like a beast. They will remain unscrupulous because they are elected by dubious mean.
Are we satisfied with how the elections are held? Of course not! How can inexperienced, unqualified, insecure and precarious officials be able to hold the general election in the wilderness where even wolves don’t want to wander? Results are manipulated, fake ballot papers, tempering of ballot boxes, destruction of votes cast in favour of the opponent and many other illegal, unethical and immoral means employed during elections. Are you satisfied with the results of all these constituencies? Where elections are considered as an opportunity for the commoners and they feel proud to place a sale tag on their chest. Similarly voting in our society is based on personalities and rhetoric. Our citizens are ignorant and don’t have the ability to make informed choices. Unfortunately the future of Pakistan is decided by these illiterates constituting the major portion of our population. It is rightly asserted that the results of our elections are spurious and unreliable as a result sensible voters become politically apathetic because they are not playing any role in the political game of snake and ladders.
How can you bring the change where regional issues are preferred over the national interest? Our political culture is predominantly parochial, rich in societal schism and hinged on local feudal, urban bosses and their followers. The power worshipper disregards the vices of the power holder. No intra party elections and there is no change in power structure because it is circulating within the family members. The power of inheritance can still bring the lunatic to be decorated on the imperial throne. The fidelity to the family, clan, tribe, cults, kinships, class, colour and creed always outweigh loyalty to the “NATION” and people consider it as their social compulsion. Regional parties are always preferred over national outfits based on ethnic discrimination, linguistic division, religious fanaticism, sectarianism, tribalism, provincialism and regionalism. Similarly government has failed to adopt any approach to assimilate or accommodate these factions within our own territory that’s why it is quite easy for the external patrons of these groups to exploit them against us.
Politicians are like vampires; suck the blood and live forever. They are murderer because they are building their empire over the skeletons of poor citizens. These vultures are savagely oppressive towards the poor and living the life full of scandals and controversies. Spotless are only those who don’t get the chance to exploit. To bend the law for personal gain is considered as the hallmark of a successful politician. Feel no shame to harass and subdue the members of the opposition. The most pernicious, immoral and unethical act like horse trading is the common phenomena of our politicians for a ministerial assignment or other petty temporal benefits like bank loans, residential or commercial plots and lucrative jobs for the relatives etc. Foreign bank accounts are the repository of the national treasure and they don’t have an iota of shame while doing their personal religious activities on government expense. Even religious politicians are hopeless, lack of altruism and exploiting Islam to achieve the pity temporal end. No vision and have marginalized all the fundamental principles of democracy.
A Parliament that is oblivious of fake degree holders and other anti social elements present there is weak from the start. Therefore how can it have the will to resolve the problems? In fact they are steering away from the agendas advocating radical social change. The famous national security policy is still in abeyance. Governance performance is exactly conceived through furtive sharing of information, poor economic reforms, obscure foreign policy, deteriorating health status, failure in the educational sector and abortion of power devolution. The legitimacy of the government remains questionable by the sacrilegious act of drones in our tribal belt fostering anti government sentiments and undermines its credibility.
The country’s economy is deteriorating day by day with circular debt well over $130 billion. Despite this alarming state our leaders are wasting the poor country’s revenue on the show piece projects. Can’t they think beyond the perishable, imprudent and injudicious ventures? We need exigent reforms, policies and projects for health, education, technology, justice and law and order sectors. But we explicitly know that mega projects mean mega kickbacks and ultimately mega corruption where political supporters are awarded mega contracts for their loyalties. Billions of rupees have been doled out from development funds to their own relatives.
Misappropriation and misuse of power lead to unjust distribution of resources and opportunities. Heavy loans have always been obtained but never spent on public assistance. Despite the claim of non availability of funds, a number of ministers have been included in the cabinet. We are having all trends of political, moral or fiscal corruptions which have percolated in our society. To quote Karl Kraus “Corruption is worse than prostitution. The latter might endanger the morals of an individual; the former invariably endangers the morals of the entire country.”
The institutions instead of strengthening the roots of democracy, aided greatly in promoting the undemocratic, autocratic, “Yes Sir Syndrome” and “All Ok culture” by their own ignorance and disregard for the democratic norms. They are not working within their constitutional perimeters. There is no accountability in any department and anyone who is in the top is above the law. Even those supposed to be enforcing the law are breaking it. Lack of institutional capacity, professionalism, specialization and experience resulted in the deterioration of public services. Especially bureaucracy is highly polluted with misuse of administrative discretion and lack of cooperation and coordination causing unbearable delay. They relied excessively on monetary incentives and intentionally or unintentionally under the political influence. Our officials are not actually trained through the carefully devised code of ethics and character building is the last priority to select or elect anyone in any department.
To cite Lord Bryce, “There is no better test of excellence of government than the efficiency of its judicial system”. Alas! Verdicts in Pakistan are based on fear, pressure and favour. They are the actual protector of the constitution however found it expedient to secure unconstitutional changes and maneuvers. It is much easier for them to mould the law to their own interests. In addition to this, a common man requires strong financial means and a long life before their plea is even heard. The overall pattern of justice is not in line with the principles of equality. Therefore social infringements have endangered the life of the poor.
The type of fig leaf which government has employed to cover its failures has been justifiably butchered by the media. Impartial and unbiased media have the ability to strength the other three pillars but unfortunately it is playing its role in destabilizing Pakistan. Some factions in our media including intelligentsia are tempting people against the ideology of Pakistan and misinterpretations of Two Nation Theory. These self styled “secularist liberals” are severely damaging our solidarity and enhancing hatred among masses. We are having the bulk of traitors trying to denigrate the very existence of Pakistan. How can a country win wars if it has been changed from its ideological basis? The country which is already entangled with Taliban led militancy, nationalist insurgency, ethnic political and sectarian violence is a lucrative target to be exploited on the ideological front.
In a society where no heed is paid to the life of commoners will always lose confidence in their future. Triviality from the authorities resulted in anger, depression, intolerance, suicide, drug addictions and all the blues of a society. Today the entire hullabaloo is because our citizens are not enjoying the right balance of opportunities and resources. Due to poor socio-economic condition, people are suffering from attention deficit disorder which has in turn indulged them in brutal activities.
We are on the verge of security, economic and social collapse and facing acute image problem. Pakistan is considered as ground zero of terrorism. How can our armed forces save the country when they are left alone to tackle all the menace? There is a dire need to break the waves of foreign interventions in our domestic issues. It is the responsibility of all the institutions to work together within their constitutional perimeters and to involve the entire society without extractive economic measures. Democracy is a self controlled system therefore it is necessary that all the institution should not be under any influence. We are still waiting for the independent judiciary and free media to protect our constitutional fronts. It is said that education is the cheapest defense of a nation which creates national integration by spreading political awareness. We need a dialectical education system with special emphasis on character building. The nation is still in search of a visionary Messiah who will give us hope and direction, to save us from going into the abyss of disintegration and chaos