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PAKISTAN'S VISION 2030
USA HAS GIVEN THE GREENLIGHT TO THE PROXY GOVERNMENT TO TAKE OUT IMRAN KHAN. THE PTI SUPPORTERS HAVE MADE IT CLEAR THAT THIS IS A RED LINE WHICH WILL BE RESISTED. IS THIS GOING TO BE THE SPARK THAT IGNITES POPULAR PROTEST ONTO THE STREETS?

PAKISTAN WHICH IS IN A VERY DANGEROUS CRISIS MAY ALSO STEER IN AN UNEXPECTED DIRECTION INCLUSIVE OF AN ARMY REVOLT. WATCH THIS SPACE.    



PEOPLE ARE UNHAPPY WITH THE ROLE OF ARMY GENERALS
Engineer Ali Mirza





WILL JUNIOR ELEMENTS IN THE ARMY TAKE MATTERS IN THEIR OWN HANDS ?
Adil Raja's startling observation!


POLICE ARRIVED TO ARREST IMRAN KHAN AT ZAMAN PARK WITH PRISON VAN






IN CONVERSATION WITH SAKIB SHERANI 






TWO NATIONS
F.S. Aijazuddin 
https://www.dawn.com/news/1737429

AT this doleful time, we should mourn with our Turkish and Syrian brethren. They have suffered a horrendous series of earthquakes and aftershocks. We must, if only because, during the floods of 2010, the Turkish people came to our rescue.

That was when Mrs Erdogan donated a diamond necklace for our flood victims. Perhaps the Pakistani VIP’s wife who purloined it for her personal toshakhana might like to donate her jewellery towards the relief of today’s Turkish and Syrian homeless. In Pakistan, which is balanced precariously on its own fault lines, we are enduring separate seismic traumas. Daily, we are made to relive the same two-nation theory that split and continues to keep us apart.


In 1947, we became independent, one country comprising two disparate nations — the eastern wing with its own culture, language and ideology, and here in the west, a loose confederation of socially disparate provinces, each with its own subculture, local dialect and provincial pretensions.  Today, we are again two separate nations.  After 1971, the four provinces of West Pakistan became a residual Pakistan, but with two separate nations — Mr Zulfikar Ali Bhutto’s Pakistan Peoples Party, and the rest. The higher strata enjoy the benefits of five-star roti, designer kapra and makan (usually abroad), while the lower strata wait still for Bhutto’s successors to redeem his promise.



Gen Ziaul Haq’s tenure reminded us that there were two nations — one with its capital in Rawalpindi and the other located in Islamabad.


Today, we are again two separate nations — Mr Imran Khan’s populist Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf vs the rest. Dr B.R. Ambedkar in his Pakistan or Partition of India (1945) described an earlier confrontation between the Quaid and the Mahatma. Replace the names of Jinnah and Gandhi with those of modern political adversaries, and you will see how two nations are created: “Mr Gandhi and Mr Jinnah have retired to their pavilions as players in a cricket match do after their game is over [.] There is no indication whether they will meet again and if so when. What next? It is not a question which seems to worry them.”



Those opponents had two alternatives: agreement or arbitration. Then, just as today, the first appeared unlikely. The second involved intervention by a third party — what, in modern political parlance, is referred to as a neutral umpire. The theory applies also to religion.

We have two major sects — Shia and Sunni. The rest — the minorities, including other faiths represented by the white panel in our flag, don’t seem to matter anymore.

We have two nations evolving out of our inequitable educational systems — an English-speaking elite and an Urdu-speaking mass. Educationists have forgotten the commitments contained in the 18th Amendment to our Constitution, passed unanimously with fanfare by our parliament in April 2010. Had it been implemented, by now, every 13-year-old Pakistani girl and boy should have received free education up to secondary level.

The provinces should have had in place “the curriculum, syllabus, planning, policy, centres of excellence and standards of education”. Where are they, and, if they exist, in which province?  Our schizophrenic country contains two nations — the privileged Haves and the s­uggling Have-Nots. Soon — sooner, if prices rise the way they have — the Have-Nots will have cause to revolt against the Haves.


We are governed by two nations — one civilian and the other in uniform. Each has its own laws, its own economy, its own budget, and its own domestic and foreign policy.  The recent fun­eral of former pre­sident Gen Pervez Musharraf has shown that one nation buries its dead with full military honours in Karachi, while the civilian leadership in Islamabad chooses not to send any representative to his funeral, not even a president. Queen Elizabeth II was luckier. Our PM did manage to be in London to participate in her funeral.  But then, we do this with all our incoming and departing leaders. To quote Kahlil Gibran: “Pity the nation that welcomes its new ruler with trumpeting,/ and farewells him with hooting.

Now that farewells are being mentioned, with the deaths of two icons — Amjad Islam Amjad on Feb 10 and Zia Mohyeddin on Feb 13 — future litfests have lost their voices. Neither Amjad sahib nor Zia sahib needs an epitaph. Their creative lives will serve as their monument.



Poetry is the language of mourning. One poem of Amjad sahib’s (almost a haiku in its brevity) is both prescient and poignant. Its title is The Wind Cannot Read: “I had installed/ several signboards carefully/ throughout the garden. I planted signs: ‘Don’t pluck flowers.’ I didn’t realise that the wind cannot read.”  Like the wind, death too is illiterate.




DIVIDED IN CRISIS  
Maleeha Lodhi

https://www.dawn.com/news/1735593/divided-in-crisis 


While the economy teeters on the brink and a new surge of militant violence threatens the country’s security, the political situation descends into more chaos.


The country’s intensifying challenges prompted Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif to call an all-parties conference but this did nothing to lower the political temperature. Indeed, there is no indication that political leaders are willing to pause their political war to find solutions to Pakistan’s multiple crises. Instead, recent developments have plunged politics into a more volatile and confused state. Uncertainty rules as politics gets messier.


The dissolution of the Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa assemblies opened another chapter in the fierce political confrontation between the government and opposition. While opposition leader Imran Khan hoped this would force the PDM government to call early general elections, the ruling alliance stuck to its guns and insisted that national polls would only be held once parliament completes its full term in August. But it left the PML-N-led government having to deal with the constitutional obligation of holding elections to provincial assemblies in the stipulated 90-day period. Its governor in Punjab is however demurring over fixing a date. This despite the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) writing to him and proposing dates between April 9 and 13 and reminding him of his constitutional duty to announce elections within 90 days from the date of dissolution of the assembly. ECP has also suggested between April 15 and 17 for the KP election.


The delay reflects PML-N’s reluctance to press ahead on this count. This was laid bare in a recent meeting of PDM heads. News reports indicated that a case was made by some in the party to delay provincial elections on the grounds that these should follow a digital census due to get underway in March. This, it was argued, would be consistent with an earlier decision of the Council of Common Interests that the next elections should be held according to a new census. This argument ignores the fact that such decisions cannot override constitutional stipulations. Some in the ruling party have apparently invoked the financial cost of holding multiple elections as an argument for delay, pointing out that holding two provincial and national elections at a different time would be unprecedented in the country’s history.

PML-N’s assessment seems to be that provincial elections within 90 days would advantage Khan. If PTI does exceptionally well that would set the template for national polls later. Given the political cost the ruling alliance is incurring due to the tough economic measures it is taking to resume the IMF loan programme and the worsening energy crisis, it needs time for a course correction to improve its position before going to the polls. Party leaders also think more time would enable them to end internal discord and divisions in what is their rudderless Punjab organisation today.

The country’s multiple crises have not persuaded political leaders to pause the political war. Whether or not this political calculation is well grounded, any effort to delay provincial elections will further complicate the situation, even spark a constitutional crisis. The matter will again be left to the courts to decide. Already the governor’s prevarication over fixing an election date is in court. More litigation can be expected with the Supreme Court likely to be involved if provincial polls are postponed beyond April. This would mean asking the courts to suspend the 90-day constitutional requirement, which will take some doing. It will certainly reinforce the growing impression that PDM is running scared of elections. 


For his part, KP Governor Ghulam Ali has said that the law and order situation in his province was not suitable to hold elections. After the terrorist attack on a mosque in Peshawar, which claimed over 100 lives, he wrote a letter to the ECP. In this he asked it to consult all relevant stakeholders including political parties and law-enforcement agencies before fixing a date for the polls in view of the “alarming” security situation in the province. Later, the Punjab governor wrote a similar letter to ECP citing the country’s security as well as economic situation. While the timing of provincial elections is still up in the air, if they are held on schedule, it will mean there will be elected, and not neutral caretaker governments in place when general elections are held. This will create its own complications and hand the losing party an excuse to explain its defeat and more consequentially to reject the outcome — a catch-22 situation.


Adding to the current political confusion are by-elections announced to 33 National Assembly seats for March 16. ECP has fixed March19 for another 31 seats. These became vacant after the resignations of PTI MNAs were hurriedly accepted by the National Assembly speaker. So, a major electoral exercise will get underway in March whose outcome may shape political dynamics for general elections but in which winning candidates from PTI will not even join the current NA. In any case, whoever wins will only serve for four months as a member before the Assembly is dissolved. The PPP has decided to contest the by-elections but PML-N is still undecided — indecision increasingly becoming the hallmark of the party leadership.

There are two important conclusions to draw from all of this. One, that political turmoil, ceaseless power struggles and frequent appeals to courts to settle political disputes are
all taking place at a time when the country is faced with serious challenges to its financial solvency and security. This shows a disconnect from reality by the warring parties. It also suggests a lack of concern for issues that will actually determine the fate and fortunes of the country. Two, the searing political divide and polarisation portends a troubled outlook for what might happen before, during and after general elections, whenever they are called. With political parties constantly on a collision course, unable to agree on anything and confronting each other on everything, there is little chance of any consensus on the rules of the road leading to national polls and, more importantly, on accepting its outcome. This suggests political stability might remain elusive in a country that needs it more desperately now than ever.
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RE: PAKISTAN'S VISION 2025 - by globalvision2000administrator - 02-16-2023, 11:03 PM

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