Sunday, August 30, 2009

Pakistan At 62

August is a blessed month as 62 years ago a new Muslim country appeared on the world map in the form of Pakistan. The creation of Pakistan was nothing short of a miracle as it was created after thousands of sacrifices. When the time to get rid of the British rule in India came, Hindus began to think that they will now have the opportunity to rule Muslims.

According to the world acclaimed system of politics, democracy, Muslims would have been in minority, while Hindus would have fulfilled their dreams of ruling India as they formed the significant majority. This thinking of Hindus was gauged by the visionary personality of Allama Iqbal and he brought forward Qaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah for the leadership of the Muslim League. Thus, it was because of the efforts and pains taken by Qaid-e-Azam and the Muslim League that Pakistan was created.

Separate Homeland of Indian Muslims
After a period of seven years since the Pakistan resolution, Pakistan was created and hence the dream of a separate homeland for the Indian Muslims was fulfilled. After the creation of Pakistan, thousands of Muslims had to migrate from India to Pakistan. During this journey Hindus and Sikhs began killing Muslims and they did not even spare women, elderly people or children. The ones who were spared of their atrocities were able to reach Pakistan. This migration reminded us of the Migration from Mecca to Medina by the holy Prophet Mohammad.

A lot of people migrated to Pakistan just for the sake of Islam. The Pakistani people also replicated the Ansars of Medina and welcomed the Mohajirs with open hands; hence a new Pakistan began its life journey. The country was established for the sake of Islam, but it has largely remained the domain and politics of the Muslim cleric, chants of the opportunists and in the hearts of ordinary Muslims.

Basis of Ideology
The country was created for the sake of democracy, but it largely became subservient to the wishes of the Army, who ruled over the country for more than half the time since the existence of Pakistan. This country was established on the basis of an ideology, but it was broken down into parts. By losing Bangladesh, we allowed Indira Gandhi to critically state that she has dumped the ideology of Pakistan in the Arabian Sea and has taken revenge for being under the slavery of Muslims for years. The man who raised the slogan that "we will live here, while you live there" received a lot of appreciation for holding an Islamic Conference in the remaining Pakistan, while, in fact, it was organized to recognize Bangladesh. Politicians have always proven to be incompetent. That is why the Army gets an opportunity to come to power, however, the interesting thing is that the idea of municipal level democracy (basic democracy) has always been put forward by the Army generals, while the politicians have been wary of holding elections within their own party so that their dominance within the party does not wither away.

Derive Personal Gains
Religious cleric, generals, clerks, or politicians, and even every person working in any capacity have looted the country to derive personal gains. The way the country has remained into existence is nothing short of a miracle. Despite looting and incompetence, some good people have also come to this country and God has taken the desired work from them.

If you take the example of Ayub Khan among the dictators, he achieved a great feat by establishing a new city in the form of Islamabad and making it the federal capital, he built the Tarbela and Mangla dam, and he is credited for discovering the popular leader Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto. He used to call Ayub "daddy", although later he stood up against him and became a popular leader. Bhutto achieved the feat of flour and sugar shortage in the country and in addition, he did great damage to the country by nationalizing the domestic business enterprises and educational institutes.

Under the garb of feudalism, Bhutto raised the slogan of "Roti, Karpa or Makan" and made the common man stand in queues for daily commodities. Despite numerous faults, he had charismatic leadership abilities and is credited for creating political awareness among the masses. The 1973 constitution is an achievement of Bhutto and the will to create a nuclear weapon for Pakistan even if the citizens of the country will be made to have grass to sustain itself is another of his accomplishments. Steel mill, atomic program, the 1973 constitution, and giving the proletariat an identity are the achievements of Bhutto, but he was too hungry for power and this hunger led to the separation of Pakistan. If he would have allowed the assembly session after the elections to take place in Dhaka, Pakistan would not have split into two halves. The same lust for power forced him to commit the heinous crime of rigging the elections in September and General Zia-ul-Haq benefited from this stubbornness of Bhutto. Gen Zia was once the blue eyed boy of Bhutto, but once Gen Zia saw the opportunity he lunged on to power by pushing aside Bhutto. Despite being a dictator, Gen Zia showed good political acumen and he had complete control over the affairs of the country for a decade. Gen Zia tried to Islamicise the Army and shut down any alcohols dens in the Army to infuse the spirit of Islam in them. He became the heartthrob of the Muslim world by supporting Afghanistan in the war against Russia. After the death of Gen Zia, democratic era came back to the country, as Benazir Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif jostled for power between each other. The public became dissatisfied with these democratic governments and they also failed to complete the tenure of their respective governments.

Rule of Dictatorship
In Pakistan, democratic governments and military dictatorships repeated past mistakes, which led to their downfall. During the past decade, a military dictator came at the helm of power after sending Nawaz Sharif to exile. Apparently, he looked like a person who is a panacea to all ills in the country, but his actions have shown that he caused the most damage to the country as compared to other national rulers. Former President Pervez Musharraf prevented Nawaz Sharif from returning back to the country, he also benefited from the self exile of Benazir Bhutto. He experimented with new strategies that shook the foundations of the country. He washed in blood the whole area from Waziristan to Red Mosque, and sowed such seeds of lawlessness that his descendants are cutting the harvest.

Nawaz Sharif and Benazir Bhutto displayed exemplary understanding by apologizing for the past grievances and dispute between them and prepared a document like the charter of democracy. Although, this was not acceptable to fate and the antistate elements and they removed Benazir Bhutto from the way and when the time for Musharraf to leave power came he handed over the governance to people who are strictly adhering to his policies.

Numerous Ups and Downs
The past 62 years of Pakistan have witnessed numerous ups and downs, but the county was able to progress in the right direction, although at a snail pace. A dictator like Ayub Khan gave the country a new capital and dam projects, while a political leader like Nawaz Sharif constructed the motorway, laid down the foundations of the Gwadar port, and established new airports in Karachi and Lahore.

The creation of Pakistan was not an easy feat since it was not acceptable to both the British and Hindus. It was only acceptable to the supreme creator, God. Hence, God has taken the mantle of protecting this country. That is why false intentions of India have not been backed up with actions on the ground.

Nuclear and Missile Development
Pakistan may be in a pathetic state, but it was blessed to have a great scientist like Abdul Qadeer Khan. The nuclear program was initiated by Ayub Khan, which was ably carried forward by Bhutto and finally Nawaz Sharif carried out the atomic bombs in reply to those done by India. The missile capacity of Pakistan is even perceived as a threat by Israel, and Al-Khalid is also a much talked about missile in the world. Unfortunately corruption, nepotism, and the failure to adhere to merit standards have not allowed the institutions to properly grow in the country.

In the past few years, the media have also become mature and independent and they have started creating awareness in the public. The media played a frontline role in the lawyer movement against the maligned intentions of Musharraf and now the judiciary has become an independent and important institution that is playing a key role in the country. It is hoped that this process of awareness will continue and the common people will be more honest and responsible in the selection of its elected representatives. As a result of this the institutions in the country will strengthen and hence the country will become more powerful.

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