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Category Archives: Pakistan Peoples Party

4th Nov & 11 May; crossing University Ave.


Yes it is about elections in Pakistan, but it about my experience also….. and it’s invitation to cross the University Ave. so read if you are interested. It is about a day some years ago.

In less than 30 minutes I must have crossed the University Ave. 30 or 40 times; whenever the traffic light turned red and pedestrian light switched on, I crossed the road. I crossed it with my other friend and there might be 100 students doing the same thing, right on the corner of Swamp Restaurant.

Just an hour or so ago,  ABC news has said polls are closed and they were ready to declare Obama President of USA; date was Nov. 4 2008 (yes I had to go back and check date, as people who know me know I don’t remember dates).

And these students excited on the prospect of something new, on promise of something different, a change, these young people just few years in their twenties (some even younger than that)  were on roads of Gainesville. It looked so easy in the end, it looked like all the worry of past so many months of seeing Sarah Palin heart beat away from becoming the most powerful person on earth, was nothing.

I think there were some exams going around and few were told about the results while they were taking tests. And in some cases teachers promised they will not going to look at the results till the end of the class. Now when results were out, as per the boring tradition, no one knew what to do, no one knew if any celebratory party was going around. Gators did what we were accustomed to do, gather at University Ave. (some new kids don’t remember old days of us winning those championships and closing down of University Ave., good old days)

I don’t know how it started, but students started crossing the University Ave. 30, 40 people on each side whenever the pedestrian light switched students will cross the road, high fiving people coming from other direction, shaking hands and talking and enjoying.

It was a monumental moment, even for me who is not American. I who came from the country where every 10 years the army takes over, where the best leaders you get are Bhuttos, I who was sad and angered when I had seen my countrymen cheering for Musharaf; I was happy this change coming in a country which is blamed for many things wrong in my country. I was happy to see the system work.

Might be because this was first time I have seen the election really working and choosing a person which I felt was far better choice than opponent. Might be because there were not cries of rigging and Mc Cain accepted results quite honorably. Might be because I saw the process giving opportunity to people to prob the candidate (unfortunately the 2012 elections were quite a disappointment in that respect)

No, I was not disillusioned like many of my American friends (living in Pakistan makes you too wise and cynical to believe in the oratory skills of a leader), but his ideas were grate. He looked like a leader willing to take charge, willing to defend his position, willing to admit his mistakes.

Yes did I have hope, of course, I had hope, did I had expectation? No I did not had any expectation of him bringing world peace or changing the America in 100 days.  Or he is going to radically change the philosophy with which the big nations run the world.

Today I am hopeful that we are going to see the same thing in Pakistan, an election after 5 years of completion of the Constitutional Assembly. Election, not because someone took 10, 20 thousand people and blocked the constitution avenue or did the train march towards Islamabad (never understood this name, because no trains go to Islamabad) and not because Army general pushed his stick on the chest of PM for announcing elections.

And I am hopeful because an outsider has ruined the party for others, Imran Khan and PTI long time in making have finally got enough muscle to push the old guard a little bit. It is not same comfortable run towards election. Again I have hope, but I have no expectation.

Why I have no expectation, because like Obama, he is new but like Obama he has Old guard around him. Like Obama he has words, courage and vision but no clear path. No expectation because he did not understood beauty of system and cried of fall of government too many times in past five years. No expectation because he and most of his supporters think, matters could be solved by just nomination of one person. I have no expectation because he will have to do on job learning, it is different than coming on television and giving policy speech on prompt.

I have hope because unlike the two parties that have their roots in being raised by the Dictators this one does not (atleast not directly). To refresh memories both Bhutto and Mian Nawaz Sharif were part of Dictatorship. Unlike the two other parties, this party does not appear to have roots in one area or province, unlike other parties it does not have the family members nominated or “elected” to main party posts. Unlike other parties it worked for last 15 years to reach here. Unlike other parties it does have “ideas” about the situation and are willing to come out and say them. Even when this lets supported of other “silent” parties claim title of “secular parties” (interesting to see PPP do that when PPP elected President of Pakistan was absent for air waves on the killing of the Governor of Punjab or of the Minister of Minority affairs).

I have hope because hundreds of thousands of youngsters that had nothing to do with this system few years back are putting their hearts in it. I know many will have their hearts broken within few months of election.

I have hope because I am up for long run and long fight, I don’t believe in miracles that change nations (I have seen too many of those) or in revolutions that claim to burn down old cancers. I believe is long, tiring battles where grounds are won inch by inch.

So yes I have hope, and I wish my people will vote (whoever you try to vote to, it’s up to you);

So yes I will, when the elections will be over and results come in, go to the University Ave. right in front of parking lot of the Chemistry department and will cross the road. I know it is totally unrelated and non-consequential action, benefiting no one. But I will be there for myself and for my hope of Pakistan’s future.  You are welcome to join.

 

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Pakistan’s PM to be arrested.


Interesting and serious situation has developed in Pakistan. One of the province is now being run by governor with provincial govt. resigned. Hundreds of protesters are being led in capital Islamabad by “suddenly appearing” cleric demanding assemblies be dissolved. And now the Supreme Court has ordered that PM be arrested and presented in front of court.

I have been little away from the situation so don’t know why is he being arrested. I know in what case he is being arrested, but “why” is big question. Has he being charged? if yes, then by whom? Attorney General of his own govt.? Or the court is just asking him for the appearance? Is he being arrested for the questioning and investigation?

With it the KSE has plunged 500 points, things are going from serious to worse quite quickly. With the court time already ended (or near the end) getting a pre-arrest bail will be impossible. So how the police handles this situation? Will PM has to be arrested? or he can just present himself to the court in the morning?

To me question is What was court thinking????? Without indictment  you are arresting PM??? under what rule and for what purpose? just for questioning? He is PM, he is there, he could be ordered to appear for the questioning.

 

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Salman Taseer’s Murder: Belt up to fight the intolerance


You must have heard the Parent example for rationalizing violence, The Parent example goes like this, with little variations; “If a shopkeeper curses your father and uses —- words for your mother, will you beat the heck out of him or not?”  This is most used example to justify violence especially in the cases related to Blasphemy. Well I can beat the heck out of that guy but then I will spend years in the jail.  Most importantly from when the Emotional Responses become basis for actions, judge might reduce my punishment but punishment I will get.  Question should not be what I will do, question should be what Law says.

Why I am telling you about this?

When I heard about Salman Taseer’s murder I was thinking it will result in huge change in Pakistan

After just few hours I know what direction we are going. In all the media not one religious scholar has clearly condemned the killing. Fazl-ur-Rehman have included the phrases, that hint that they hold Salman Taseer to be responsible for his murder.  Some other religious and non-religious leaders were clearly saying that he should have been more careful in presenting his views.

Fan page has been setup on the Facebook for that murderer,  he is being called Ghazi by some religious group openly, a guy on twitter is sending salutes to the killer, Adil Najam of Pakistaniat.com is getting threatening comments on his blog, the people on the news channels are rationalizing actions of Malik Mumtaz, some religious leaders are advising against offering funeral prayers, and list continuous.

It’s time to belt up and stand up against the intolerance; it’s time to start telling “No it is not Ok for some one to be whacked up for what he/she has said”

No, no one should be declared Non-Muslim for their views, it’s only their right to declare their faiths.

It’s time to start asking our leadership for condemning such actions.

If we will stand up, if we don’t speak up; we might see people been killed for even things smaller that this. I was horrified to see a guy saying those who question Blasphemy Law are hurting feelings of people of Pakistan and then in not so open phrases defending the killer. This all appeared like threat to other people who criticize Blasphemy Law made by Zia-ul-Haq.

Let’s raise the voice so that Mumtaz Qadri does not become hero, we should be strong to disallow creation of other Mumtaz Qadri’s, we should make enough noise so that people should think twice before supporting a murderer.

 

P.S.

I hate terrorists, not only because they kill people. But also because they make Martyr out of those who should not be respected; first Zia should have been hanged he became Shaeed, Benazir should have been tried for all the corruption and mismanagement she was made Shaheeda and now Suleman Taseer who should have been removed from governorship (for bullying the elected govt. of Punjab not on his stance against Blasphemy laws) and spend rest of days thinking about days in governorship has become Shaheed.

But all things aside, his death will play an important role here in which direction Pakistan has to go. He is high profile enough to not let the matter die for weeks. It will be interesting to know what khutbaas are given during Friday prayers; and how people react when Malik Mumtaz is tried in the courts.

 


 

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Me, Pakistan and media


Yes,  I am about to block all the websites that can give news about Pakistan. How can you concentrate after reading all this. Bomb blasts, rising prices, electricity not there, and now Shehbaz making stupid remarks.

One good thing is atleast they can’t say or do stupid things and get away with them; remember Zardari & Child Born in Rikshaw both President and PM both had to do something to correct it, electricity theft atPML-N rally and now Shehbar Sharif making this statement. Credit must go to media and some form of working democracy. Few years back during dictatorship of Musharaf clothes were tore away from the bodies of prominent protesters and nothing happened.

I know there are many other cases where our politician’s and their worker’s transgressions are covered up, but then democracy is also work in progress.

You, see that’s what happens, I start thinking about Pakistan, reading about Pakistan and then oh this, oh that keep bubbling in my mind.

Right now I have to concentrate on my work, that’s what Pakistan needs more people doing their job correctly. So bye bye news for sometime

 

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Question to Supreme Court Why Saqib Nisar and why Khawaja Sharif ?


Here comes the new mess.

Again in Pakistan, Judges and Executive are face to face.

Ok, for people who don’t know, visit

http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/president-elevates-justice-sharif-to-sc,-appoints-justice-saqib-as-lhcs-acting-cj-sc-suspends-notification-govt-claims-it-consulted-cj-legal-fraterni-420

From what I have heard, Chief Justice of Pakistan wants to elevate Justice Saqib Nisar to Supreme Court where as Govt. wants (more specifically it appears President of Pakistan wants) Chief Justice of Lahore Hight Court Justice Khawaja Muhammad Sharif.

What I have heard that it appears Chief Justice has more say in who’s to be elevated to the Supreme Court.  However what has concerned me more is Why Chief Justice wants a specific person to be in the Supreme Court and not the other one?

Is Justice Khawaja Sharif (Chief Justice of Lahore) less competent than Justice Saqib Nisar? or is it just personal preference?

If it is based on merit that I will be really interested in knowing why a Chief Justice of Lahore is less competent that his junior.

On the legal grounds, to me atleast it appears Cheif Justice of Pakistan has more firm standing because Govt. has to take the Supreme Court’s recommendation, which it has become evident that they have not taken. But the Supreme Court has to explain what is the criteria in which a person is elevated to this highly prestigious institution.  Just because you are legally right does not make a decision right.

Just because you can do something does not make it a correct decision.

He must explain why he is not picking the senior most judge to the Supreme Court. What is the mechanism of such process?

 

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Please dont ask Army to interfere


I was disappointed by many who were saying Army should interfere; many of whom who were pretty active against Musharaf. It is same mindset that resulted in acceptance of many previous military intervention.  One should not accept illegal actions even if  they result in  something he/she wished.

If we cannot enforce will of the  majority then there is flaw in our system that should be rectified by the people not by army. If we need army to come and do the corrective measure then we should accept their permanent position in the political system, give them role legaly and forget about the salogans of democracy.

 

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Section 144, Should Politics be stopped by fear of terrorism


There comes section 144, again in the context of best interest of Pakistan.  Govt. is saying that they cant allow long march because of the fear of the terrorism. Well they are right, there should not be any such political activity when there is fear of terrorism.

But I remember the day Benazir returned to Pakistan she was told to reduce her activity, not go for the big rally and she did not listened. Then PPP put blame on the government. Then again it was advised by that times govt. to reduce the public exposure because there is threat on her life but she did not.  Lot of my friends were of view that she has every right to hold the political rally, that’s how the elections are fought, that’s how the politics works; you go and talk to people, you go and meet people, show your public muscle.

I then thought they were wrong, I now also think govt. has right to stop such public activities if there is clear danger of terrorism. But question is are they imposing the Section 144 with positive intent? Will imposing Sect. 144 save the Pakistan from terrorism?

It does not look that this govt. has any more positive intent than that of the previous govt., which by the was zero.But leaders of the political rallies should think and be responsible for the life and safety of their participants.Routs, security guards should be marked. There should be clear emergency plan. We dont want anything that happened in two of the Benazir’s rallies.

But unfortunately Govt. going for kill by starting the arrests, blocking the paths does not allow any room where both can work out details of the program.

Unfortunately the elements of state that should work to protect the people become too busy protecting government that they forget to protect state.

 

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