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Invisible democracy in Pakistan

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By Ali Jan Maqsood

Pakistan is currently listed among the democratic countries in the world. However, democracy in the country has always been an invisible phenomenon when it comes to practical life. One witnesses no wave of democracy but of entitled only.

Pakistan has always been ruled by the ‘family’ parties; Pakistan Peoples Party of Bhutto-Zardari family, Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz), of the Sharif dynasty etc. Albeit, a recent change in the setup of governance (Mr. Imran Khan Niazi’s regime) sparked the hope of the countrymen of eyeing ‘tabdeeli’ which is the slogan of Mr. Khan’s party and the chants of ‘naya Pakistan’, however, there has appeared nothing notable that describes the ‘tabdeeli’ or ‘Naya Pakistan’ of Mr. Khan yet.

He, initially demanded solely 90 days from the population of the state of the appearance of change, the said ‘change’ has failed to be visible in the state after more than a year of his rule in the Islamic Republic of Pakistan.

Most dishearteningly, the blame game among the political parties in the country elections per elections has proven to be dangerous for the democratic continuity of the state. It has, eventually, created an image of a totally corrupt system of Pakistan globally.

The recent lessening of worth of Pakistan’s largest business project, China Pakistan Economic Corridor, by the Chinese business community is all a result of the negative statements of the current government blaming the ex leaders of the country as corrupt. The Chinese have, by then, ceased many projects happening in Pakistan with the support of CPEC, biggest of which is the incomplete corridor from the port city Gwadar to China.

The Chinese government, right after the defamatory statement of Mr. Khan’s government, sat a commission to inquire if the spoken words of Mr. Khan were true, ending up with unveiling the corruption done by our former leaders putting the funds of CPEC in their set-accounts in and out of the country.

National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has, indeed, caught several ex ministers in the cases of filling their bank accounts using the funds of national projects. Many development projects in the country have been delayed only because the funds, which were to be awarded to these works, were illegally transferred to the anonymous bank accounts which were actually of the leaders of the state.

Besides this, the recent downfall of two ministers, Akbar Askani and Sardar Abdul Rahman Khetran, of Balochistan Awami Party (BAP) in Balochistan in the case of impure elections is yet another throw back of the democracy in the country. The mentioned ministers were reported to have used illegal tactics to win elections and thus were impeached by the Tribunal Court.

Despite the Court has directed the Election Commission to conduct re-election in these stations, the clouds of doubts would appear regardless of the coming elections.

How are we supposed to defeat the curse of corruption and bringing back the democracy in practice when the state is insecure to conduct elections on merit base?

All in all, Pakistan has, in every decade, lacked democracy in the real sense. Although, many times the military rulers have practiced to have imposed Martial Law by squashing the myth of democracy in Pakistan, but have always given losses to the country for long term.

The state, in spite of being rich in natural resources and owning a perfect geography, has always vociferated in giving birth to leaders protecting the public interest and enhancing the worth of democracy. Pakistan has thus failed to enlist herself among the developed countries by now.

The state, in such circumstances, need to work more on creating young leaders by sensationalizing the political platforms in university level brainstorming the young leaders of being more patriotic towards the state. The country direly requires political dynamics to give birth to democracy, not in paper only but in practical life too.

The writer is a former teacher at DELTA in Turbat and a student of Law at University Law College Quetta. He can be reached at alijanmaqsood17@gmail.com and tweets at @Alijanmaqsood12

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