Original Articles

Why the President Should visit UK as Planned – by Ahmed Iqbalabadi

David Cameron delivers a speech at Infosys Technologies headquarters in Bangalore Photo: AP

British Prime Minister, Mr. David Cameron, while replying to a question in Bangalore last week warned Pakistan that it should not be allowed “to promote the export of terror” in the world. He said it was intolerable that Pakistan should be allowed to “look both ways”. The reflex action of the comments made me feel insulted for we as Pakistanis and our nation Pakistan has been facing a catch 22 situation of being “damned if we do and damned if we don’t”. But then thinking rationally, I wondered why Mr. Cameron would have to make such statements knowing fully the tirade he will receive from across the border. Our foreign office, security apparatuses and political parties have gone overboard in criticizing the comments of Mr. Cameron. The usual suspects of the ghairat brigade and the pseudo intellectuals have gotten yet another chance to redirect their guns to the favorite punching bag of Pakistan, President Zardari who is to start a visit to Britain later this week.

What Mr. Cameron said may be factually correct or incorrect but we have to realize why he had to say this. The visit of Mr. Cameron to India was an important stepping stone in the UK-India relationship which is more and more becoming business focused than maintaining the age old colonial master-slave relationship. Mr. Cameron was asked in an interview by Faisal Islam of Channel 4 if he felt the comments (on Pakistan) had overshadowed his visit to India. Mr. Cameron’s response was: “I don’t think it’s overshadowed anything. I mean I just think it’s important to speak frankly and clearly about these issues. I’ve always done that in the past and I’ll always want to do that as Prime Minister, but this trip is about building the relationship between Britain and India. A relationship which is about the economy, business, finance, but also a relationship that is about security and about common issues like climate change. And on all those issues I think it’s been a great success and very, very positive.”

Being the 11th largest economy of the world in 2009, having a GDP of $1,235,975 million and expected to grow at  more than 7% growing forward, UK can just not ignore the

David Cameron is wooing India. It's his right

growing might of India. India being on a chart of growth, where it has established itself firmly as the 2nd fastest growing economy of the world after China, it is finding itself more and more in the exclusive company of global elite. It is part of G-20 group of nations and continues to aim for a permanent seat in the UN Security Council. Having chosen to liberalize their economy post 1991, whereby more and more family businesses chose to forge alliances with leading global businesses and also using the route of public listing, there are more than 50 billionaires in USD terms from India. Without doubt, India is a power that cannot be ignored.

UK, facing a recession and a relative crisis of confidence, is choosing to woo its former colony for its own good. And why not? India has a population of  1.1 billion and a middle class of more than 450 million, a legal system that has its roots from the British system of governance and a nation where English is spoken, read and written. It is an ideal place for British businesses to have a firm footing. Not just investment flows into India but Indian businessmen can look to acquire British companies that are in difficulty or present value to the investor.

Now coming to the question of President Zardari’s upcoming visit to UK, he is being pressured into not visiting the country post the remarks of Mr. Cameron. If there is fire in your house, what would you do? Extinguish it or enflame it further? I feel this is an ideal opportunity for the President to plead a case which is contrary to what Mr. Cameron has said in India. At the same time, by continuing  with his planned visit, the President is giving out a clear cut message to behind the scene policy makers that it is the political system which should be the master and the one that sets out a policy.

What we need at this point is sensibility to prevail and seek cooperation from UK on matters of fighting terror, economic support and liberalization of visas for Pakistani students who are suffering because of the strict policies adopted by the British. These are the problems of people of Pakistan than questioning the statement of a Prime Minister of another country who has to look for his own interests. It is most pertinent for us to learn from India that effectively continues to plead its case as an investment destination, economic power and a peace loving country.

On a personal note let me share with you an experience related to being a Pakistani. I applied for a visit visa for Canada last week. To my utter surprise, Indian citizens were getting the visa the same day (if all requirements covered and visa officer satisfied) whereas I have to wait a minimum 2 weeks for the same. Now that is called image!

About the author

Ahmed Iqbalabadi

16 Comments

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  • I totally agree that the president must go on and visit France and UK and my reasons are
    1- We cannot and shouldn’t cut ties based on one remark made By their president or PM. No one else does it, we don’t do that even in our day to day lives why should Govt do that. to quote an example Israelis used the fogged British passport to kill a Hamas activists. British Govt made a full appropriate response but didn’t cancelled their visits or ties.

    2- all those opposing this and asking Zardari to cancel his visit and doing it because of their Wastage interests. if we are gonna accept/agreed what they say then their next demand will be ‘to fire a Ghauri Missiles on Camp Sebastian when ever a drone crosses the Pakistani Border’ this will be done in the name of Ghairat. while fact is , the sons of Imran Khan [ chief of Ghairat Brigade are British national] sons of Sharives are doing established business here and i don’t need to say anything about Iltaf ‘Bhai’.
    3-Government must put forwards their perspective and their stand British PM must be made cleared [in private] that this is not acceptable and this will not help Briton as well.
    4- ISI the main culprit whose is root cause of all these remarks about Pakistan is now the torch bearers of the Ghairat Brigade since their chief has cancelled the visit. and The Zardari visit will also make the message clear that Political Government stand the international world not with the barbaric.

  • sharam ani chahiye aisey khokomran ko jiskey ghar par aag key shogley barhak rahey ho our wo osey bojhaney ki bajaye osmey apne betho apne khandan ko chor kar ye soch kar khosh ho rahey ho k chalo mai tu bach giya its not fair really shocked when hear about it

  • kamal kartey hai docter sahib ap kis chiz k docter hai bribly k docter ya kahi logo ko zahar pelaney k docter tu nahi?ap bhol rahey hai k apke molk mey flood se logo ki jani our mali kitna noksan howa hai?iskey bawajod bhi khokomat khamosh bani hai hillicopter bejhey hai???kashtiya bejhey hai???kab???jab logo k gharo tak ghazab pohonch giya tab???wisey apko bohot acha lagega na k jab apka betha mout k bestar par parha ho ap osey theek karney k liye hospitl bejhtey hai waha ek hour bad osja operation shoro hojata hai docter k kami k zariye wo mar jata hai tab koi apse kahey k docter tu aye hoi they ap gila q karahey hai tab apka kiya reaction hoga?????docter sahibbbb

  • Its’ mean every one has right to talk against Pakistan just to get Indian support.
    Our image is just like a slave who work for their Master and nothing else, Tell me one thing, If Mr David Cameron said same thing about India in Pakistan, Would Indian President or PM visit UK, NEVER, that is modesty and modesty made your right image ……..

  • Agreed, with the defense for the President going to UK. But you forgot to mention that Bilawal’s graduation, the rest at the farm house in France and the crowning ceremony of Bilawal. IF he has gone there for all of what you have said, and there are no presonal agenda’s then I am all for your piece and explanation 🙂

  • And you claim to be the critical PPP forum? A very feable attempt just to justify Zardar’s visit abroad. You need to grwo above the party politics and only then you will be able to understand what is good or bad for your country. Shame

  • [Quote] “But then thinking rationally, I wondered why Mr. Cameron would have to make such statements knowing fully the tirade he will receive from across the border. Our foreign office, security apparatuses and political parties have gone overboard in criticizing the comments of Mr. Cameron. The usual suspects of the ghairat brigade and the pseudo intellectuals have gotten yet another chance to redirect their guns to the favorite punching bag of Pakistan, President Zardari who is to start a visit to Britain later this week. [quote]

    Mr.Iqbalabadi,

    I find your comments so offensive and downright obnoxious for the vast majority of Pakistanis. You sir are insulting Pakistani people and their intelligence. Common people of Pakistan were on different channels yesterday to demand that Zardari cancel his paid holidays. Yes, you read it right paid holidays and crowning of his son, soon to be the King Bilawal.

    You sir are a shameless supporter of a corrupt party and of a thief who has assumed a very important role due to scheming by distributing the loot amongst other looters of different political parties of Pakistan. They all in it to deprive Pakistani poor people necessities of life while filling their own coiffeurs to the brim. I can assure you, the corrupt Zardari.

    1-Are you from Baighariat brigade? If you are not in Ghariat Brigade then you must be in the other group.

    2- FO didn’t even call the UK’s HC to register their protest. FM Mahmud is a scum; he never raises a voice on the issues of national security. He kept quite when his Indian counterpart level very serious accusations in a press conference in Pakistan. He only issued media statements next day after his collars were pulled by the Military to explain his extremely unpatriotic behaviour, for him to ignore his duties and not to safe guard the interest of Pakistan at international level.

    3- These false perceptions of the West are direct result of Mahmud’s negligence and his cowardly attitude. He has displayed this cowardly attitude ever since he has been given the responsibility of the FO. He ignored evidence of Indian involvements in KP and Baluchistan when it was presented to him. He refuted and contradicted your own home minister, who whenever he is under pressure comes up with accusations against India. Malik has repeatedly said, Pakistan have proofs of Indian involvement in terror incidents on Pakistani soil. Why there is no co-ordination between different departments of your PPP Government?

    [Quote] “What Mr. Cameron said may be factually correct or incorrect but we have to realize why he had to say this. The visit of Mr. Cameron to India was an important stepping stone in the UK-India relationship which is more and more becoming business focused than maintaining the age old colonial master-slave relationship.” [Quote]

    What a shameful piece, India and UK relationship is becoming more business focused and you want Pakistan to maintain the same master slave mentality of the Raj?

    Therefore, Cameron is forgiven to abuse Pakistan and its people to get few fat contracts? Right! That’s what you are trying to defend, don’t you? You should be shameful for your slave mentality, you should keep these insulting thoughts and deeds to yourself and leave Pakistan and its people alone. You the members and supporters of PPP are good for nothing, dishonest and corrupt people.

    Since when you became mouth piece of Cameron? And whose interest are you serving here? Surely not the interest of Pakistan and its people.

    [quote] “Being the 11th largest economy of the world in 2009, having a GDP of $1,235,975 million and expected to grow at more than 7% growing forward, UK can just not ignore the growing might of India. “[quote]

    Do you know Pakistan is also the 26th largest economy in the world? Do you know that we could easily achieve and surpass 7% growth rate, if we have honest and hard working politicians in power. Are you trying to admit the failures of your PPP government? Wait, you are going to say you were given a rotten economy by a Dictator, right? Well, I suggest you have a takkra with me on this topic, I will show you the reality.

    We all know only a decade or so ago, the living standards of Pakistanis was far better than the Indians but due to the looters, including PPP we as a nations are on our knees, with no prospect of any betterment. Your government sir doesn’t even have people to formulate economic policies for Pakistan. You have to borrow people to prepare and run your budgets. Your party is shameful beyond any shadow of a doubt. You are just lucky that these corrupt politicians have kept the masses uneducated purposefully otherwise, you would have been booted out long time ago and would have never be given a chance again. I hope this will happen next time, I hope and there are indications that Pakistani people are becoming more aware of your loot and your low mentalities.

    [quote] “Now coming to the question of President Zardari’s upcoming visit to UK, he is being pressured into not visiting the country post the remarks of Mr. Cameron. If there is fire in your house, what would you do? Extinguish it or enflame it further? “[quote]

    When you have fire in your house and you know it is being ignited by your enemies. You get hold of them and make sure they are punished. You take stand for your safety and security. A stand your government is reluctant to take despite bundles of proofs available.
    You Sir seem like a mouth piece for Indian more than the voice for the Pakistanis. Shame on you, for paddling such lies and showing insensitivity to your country men.

    There are more than thousand people dead in Pakistan due to the floods and thousands displaced while your shameless Zardari is having paid holidays in five star comforts and crowning his son to be the King. While the usual suspects of PPP Government like Kaira, Sharmila Farooqi are paddling lies that he is going to stay in the cheapest 5 star hotel in the UK. On asking she didn’t tell the name of that cheap 5 star hotel, citing security. But don’t she worry, we will soon find out how much was spent by this looter and his cronies on his travels. While poor people of Pakistan are spending nights under open skies. Shame on you PPP and those who support this party of looters and liars.

  • Dear Crankthatskunk,
    We truly appreciate your point of view which are not necessarily subscribed to.
    Will respond briefly:
    1. The world doesnt have to be black or white, Muslim or Non Muslim, and similarly Ghairat or Non Ghairat.
    2. FO has called the British HC and a press release has been issued. You can read it on http://www.mofa.gov.pk/Press_Releases/2010/July/PR_174.htm. Honestly dont think what such calling the HC’s is going to gain Pakistan than brownie points.
    3. It is all linked to perception management. India can do anything it feels like yet get away with it. We on the other hand do so much which is evident from our qurbanis, yet we are not doing much. Cant you see that there is something missing? What is missing is that we are not able to effectively market ourselves. Marketing is not necessarily doing something with a view to increasing sales, but also building a brand. Brand India shines. Brand Pakistan whines!
    FYI, Pakistan is only one of the few countries in the world that have grown at a CAGR of above 5% over 62 years. Who says the economy is rotten? I do not believe in so! Ours is a bustling economy.
    You have all the right to criticize what is written on the blog. On the matter of economy, you can contribute for LUBP. Trust me, it will be published without fail.

  • We truly appreciae………… Mr. Iqbalabadi, could you please clarify who is We? Royal we or what. Did you write that garbage on behalf of LUBP? or Government of Pakistan?

  • “Trust me, it will be published without fail”
    Why do not then publish comments giving the same space and prominence as your own piece of Garbage? I dare you.
    .

  • If we accept the theory of the writer, then our president should visit Afghanistan, Australia, Russia as well as Israel after UK, because these countries also criticize the role of Pakistan in the war of terror. Bad attempt of justification Mr. Ahmed.

  • Were Zardari going to visit UK if Cameron would have made some offensive comments about “BiBi” or even his “not so sexy” daughters Asifa and Bakhtawar?

    Yeah he could because he;s a beghairat insaan who killed his own wife just for sake of money

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