The Caged Democracy

The Caged Democracy

Ishaq Begh

The politically motivated reforms are shaping modern world societies in a better way and procedures having a dissent background are the tools which stamp out the soul of democracy and push a nation to a standstill situation. Last year, in Pakistan’s history when the power was being transferred from one democratically elected government to another with a heavy mandate from the base of democracy, all the apprehensions of military intervention in federal government were not only challenged by the politicians and indeed were isolated from the scene. It is known to everyone in the world that after the completion of national assembly’s term of five years in Pakistan, power gets transferred to a technocratic government and in fact this govt. in collaboration with other establishments become responsible the conduction of free and fair elections. Who so were in the chairs of government, either come from the non political houses or from the bureaucratic background. At that time all the known political figures except Zardari were out of the game, so their role in the election rigging is totally unrealistic. If all these leaders including PTI chairman Imran Khan were enjoying the same kind of life and how a single entity could have high jacked the election process of Pakistan in its own favour. Leave aside PPP which was in government, all other major parties of Pakistan despite being away from the state affairs would not have been the favourites of establishment at any cost.

Now when Mr. Khan with the estimated support of cleric turned politician Tahir ul Qadri has decorated the stage of protests in Islamabad’s red zone, both of them are demanding the resignation of PML (N) patron Mr. Nawaz sharief for the alleged election rigging controversy. Are their demands passing the litmus test constitutionally or is their way of protest constitutional are some questions being largely debated in the whole world. It is well said, that do not punish any one until he is innocent or he is not proven guilty then why the drums are being beaten for the resignation of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharief. Here one gets failed while analyzing the dramas played by the Imran Khan and Tahir ul Qadri because they have supported categorically the dictatorship of Gen. Musharaf in 2002 and placed on his band wagon. Now in order to highlight their personalities in the political arena they have staged these unconstitutional protests and are crying at the doors of the Parliament besides wanting its dissolution with an open heart. It is the mob which has challenged not only a specific government but the democracy installed after many sacrifices. Everyone is in dark and keeps unending apprehensions regarding the future of stable Pakistan with an extending fear for democracy when the military stands nearby to arbitrate. An unconstitutional demand put forth by these demonstrating persons is the formation of an interim government when the present govt. has no fault as per the constitution of Pakistan.

One thing prevails under the shadows of doubt, is the pre poll disposition of Mr. Khan, who after falling down from the lift while delivering his speech to an election rally in Pakistan was attended by Nawaz Sharief in an hospital and the former made good gestures while meeting with Nawaz. It was also said by many analysts that both of them may join hands if they will not get the majority for making a govt. in Pakistan. But politics is such a game where it is difficult to assume the future of its players. Now ironically Imran Khan has changed his mind and scoffed the value of 14th August in coordination with Tahir ul Qadri. Both these two leaders have invited their followers from all over the Pakistan and cordoned the Parliament House in Islamabad. They separately prepared a list of demands but both of them gave priority to the resignation of Prime Minister which is based upon selfishness and unrealistic approach. They seem to be reluctant to the fact that in 2013 election, Nawaz Sharief was not a prime factor who could have meddled in the system and benefited his party. Why do not they understand the realty and honour the image of a Prime Minister who commands a dignified place internationally?

Out of twelve political parties, eleven have supported the position proclaimed by the government and have pledged to support the Nawaz Sharief in this deadlock then why PTI alone is shedding its tears and demand his resignation. If the elections were rigged by any institution then how PTI managed to secure wins in thirty four seats. Not only this, PTI emerged as major party in one of the provinces (KPK) of Pakistan. If PML (N) was favourite to the Pakistani institutions then whose favourites were the men of PTI are? If the results were rigged in favour of Nawaz Sharief’s PML then how PPP enjoys a majority in Senate? PML’s winning position in 192 out of 342 seats indicate that peoples mandate was with them and any favoritism if happened would not have changed their position of making government in Pakistan because rigging in all seats is totally unbelievable. Constitution of any nation is not blind and can accommodate all the legal desires of anyone irrespective of his attachment. Limitations of any kind may have been fulfilled by the dialogue process started between the stake holders and then by passing the amendments in the National Assembly of Pakistan. There is no dictatorial phobia prevailing in the legislative houses which may shut off the voices of legislatures but in fact any one can convince all others for a better change. It is not difficult for above thirty members to call out a mob of thousands and to held a long sit in against a regime and to pressurize the elected govt. in order to get their illusory as well as real demands approved. There are institutions which work under the ambit of constitution and these should be pressurized on their own floor. What, if other parties will also call out their active workers for unanimity with the sitting Prime Minister? What will be the situation in Pakistan, if such things will happen in future? Who will guarantee the environment of certainty in such conditions? Every political party of Pakistan should know the fact that illegitimacy leads to the embarrassment and any imbecile job with illusory demands ends immediately with the creation of mayhem and uncertainty.

Imran Khan must understand the fact that his tactics are shaping his political party as a pressure group and pressure groups can not find a suitable place in the South Asian politics. It is everyone’s dream and desire that his nation should have the institutions with excellence like independent judiciary and sovereign election commission, so that it will get honoured and cheers for this. And ominously if Pakistani institutions have a slight tilt towards any specific personality, then they should be pointed out and dealt with appropriate measures not by the monocracy or “mobocracy” but by honoring the legislation. When democratically elected people will not honour their mandate then their ignominy on both political as well as social spheres is evident. Deserving amendments are being appreciated by every class but unconstitutional demands are inviting the wreath from all the sides. In democracy personal matters have no place in the discussions so why PTI and PAT demands the resignation of an elected Prime Minister. Is not the demand of prime ministers resignation smell the personal rifts when all other demands have been accepted? All genuine demands can be met with only genuine measures and that is the soul of democracy.

Unconstitutional steps work as a magnet for anarchy, medium for humiliation in international forums and a line of attack from the enemies of nation. Imran Khan should have consulted all other political parties of Pakistan and persuaded them for the stability of his nation but he sided with a non political factor Qadri, who rejected to serve the nation democratically in 2004. Imran Khan should give a standing aviation to the constitution of Pakistan and dispose of his childish demands. He should wait for the results and enquiry of the judicial commission on which he has already publicized his confidence and if prime minister was found guilty then Nawaz Sharief has no moral justification to be in the chair and he has to step down with out any shakeup. Imran Khan being a reputed politician should call off the civil disobedience movement and cancel resignation en masse of his legislative members other wise his dual character may prevail day by day. He must not adhere himself to a hypocritical image by demanding the PM’s resignation as this may leave the democracy in midway and at the mercy of chanting mobs.

Author is Kashmir based political analyst. Email:

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