.. By Islamuddin
The Supreme Court decision to disqualify Nawaz Sharif presents Pakistan with a defining moment to break from the past and make a beginning to bring full benefits of freedom to the people who have waited for 70 years to see their dreams come true. One politician after the other got into power promising just that but the same was kept only in breach. Army and the Judiciary could not escape their share of blame for the persisting malaise. At last both have now redeemed themselves by saying that enough is enough and it is time to put things right lest the very survival of the state would be in grave danger.
The culture of impunity perpetuated by successive governments appears to have emboldened the rulers and their cohorts in the bureaucracy to a level where the country’s vital interests stood compromised to advance personal interests of the mafia. The situation has been succinctly pointed out in the Supreme Court decision under reference which discusses the way Sicilian mafia and the godfather operated to establish their writ. Their modus operandi was to put their men on key positions, buying and blackmailing opponents inter alia through character assassinations and finally to intimidate and physically remove them. This was exactly been done in Pakistan. Army and the judiciary either stood by or connived until it became clear that corruption was beginning to be done at the cost of the state.
Had it not been for the pressure brought to bear on the establishment by Imran Khan, things would not have moved to the direction that we see now. In the 70 year life of Pakistan Imran Khan is the best thing to have happened to Pakistan after Jinnah and Bhutto. A man of impeccable character in public life he was the ideal leader to expose the mafia. In the face of smear campaign let lose by the mafia targeting his personal life, Imran was undaunted. He was right to say that he should be judged by his public conduct and his private life was for Allah to judge. His argument won the hearts of the right thinking people but the mafia continues to confuse the simple populace.
Not many people in power have offered themselves for accountability but Imran Khan has even though he has never been in power and enjoys the reputation of being Pakistan’s Mr.Clean. The only asset he has earned is his fame which he used to raise funds for his charitable cancer hospitals and university. He shares the fame with Edhi of being honest with people’s donation which motivates them to pay more. In contrast other politicians get away with similar funds or use them for tax evasion. The best in Imran came out recently when he refused to defame his renegade MNA Aisha Gulalai who leveled serious allegations against him involving moral turpitude saying that he did not want to defame a female in a society where women are already vulnerable. This he did to a woman who appears to have made politics a business just like Nawaz Sharif.
The timing of this onslaught gives ample reasons to believe that money appears to have changed hands via her father who has been her handler. In his zeal to settle scores with Imran Khan, the former Prime Minister overlooked the credibility issue of his new found weapon. It is a measure of Imran Khan’s belief in the basic human goodness that he ignored past record of the woman while welcoming her into his party. There was enough material on record to show that this woman was so impatient to be rich and powerful that changing loyalty became a trait with her. A recent disclosure of her confidant about the saga of her and her father’s corrupt practices is a measure of poor governance of the Chief Minister or his connivance in corrupt practices. It is therefore not surprising that Imran Khan is being accused of turning blind eye to the corruption of Pervez Khattak. This incident would prove to be a blessing for Imran Khan as it would further expose the mafia and bring out the qualities of Imran Khan to the public domain. Nawaz Sharif would sink deeper into the quackmire. He traded fame for money but now he is on way to losing this money after the trial which he now desperately wants to sabotage.
The doubters of the current accountability process can only be silenced and won over if the process is expedited and supervised closely by the judiciary. The army must back the process by ensuring full security to those involved in the process. COAS did well by proclaiming that rule of law and equal treatment would be ensured at every cost. This much needed assurance would go a long way to strengthen the hands of our investigators and judges to do what the entire nation is waiting for- bringing back the looted money. Hopefully the process would be extended to everyone including those in PPP, ANP, PML, JUI, MQM, PMAP, Watan Party and NP besides those in other sectors. Starting the process with politician is a logical thing because they were primarily responsible to stop corruption and not indulge in it. Had they been upright no one could have dared to turn the other way.
The younger generation wants to believe in Pakistan. It is time they are given reasons for this belief. They want fearless, incorruptible, honest, frank and proud Pakistani to lead them. Presently Imran Khan fulfills this qualification but his life is not safe from the mafia. He must get fool-proof security. .. Islamuddin, Garm Chashma Chitral 06 Aug 2017