In what has to be a case of deep irony and dark comedy, Ijaz ul Haq is filing a character defamation lawsuit against Hanif. Did General Zia ul Haq even have a character? And how does historical fiction assassinate characters? If anything, “A case of Exploding Mangoes” was too kind to the real life malevolence of General Zia ul Haq.
During the 1980s, Begum (Mrs) Zia ALLEGEDLY ran a disappearing and extortion racket.
A Kashmiri Punjabi family known for supporting PPP lost 2 of their youth to the mass arrests and incarcerations of political prisoners during the Zia ul Haq dictatorship. During which Nawaz Sharif was a key member of Zia’s team.
Anyways, families like this were extorted for huge sums of monies to release their kids. And Mrs. Zia ul Haq was the point person for collecting this extortion. This family had to liquidate their house to pay this extortion and their son was returned after a few years. Never the same again. His cousin spent a few more years before being released.
Their only crime was to support Bhutto and the PPP. These cases are buried because Zia ul Haq was a US-backed military dictator – just like Ayub, Yahya and Musharraf.
I hope the judges dismiss the frivolous lawsuit against Hanif.
Comrade Nawaz Sharif should approach his foster brother Ijaz ul Haq to put an end to this law suit. After all, it was the same Nawaz Sharif who was so considerate of the Zia ul Haq legacy and Ijaz ul Haq that he refused to support Zardari and the PPP to remove Zia’s infamous Article 62/63. Specifically, Nawaz refused to support an amendment to remove such Zia-ist laws out of consideration for his foster brother Ijaz ul Haq.
7 years later, the same law was used to dump Nawaz Sharid himself. Someone should ask Ijaz that his daddy already assumed himself to be pure and clean. Why else would Zia frame Article 62/63 and not try himself first?
If could mean a) that Zia ul Haq viewed himself as pure and clean and thus “fit” to rule Pakistan with an iron grip and draconian laws. In that case, Ijaz has no case because the novel is fictional to begin with and that it does not coincide with the reality of the (perceived) purity of Zia in his own mind and that of his cronies like the Sharif family.
b) it could also mean that the Article 62/63 law, protected by Nawaz Sharif in parliament when it was being challenged by Zardari, Gillani and PPP, is a loaded and unrealistic law that is used against political opponents.
Ironically it was used against Zia-its spawn like Nawaz.
Still Nawaz Sharif is also quite “friendly” with Pakistani judges. Hanif’s liberal friends, the same ones who were elevating Nawaz Sharif to the status of Che Guevara, Spartacus, Emilio Zapata and Bhutto, should intercede. They should call in their “chips” and ask Nawaz Sharif to use his “good offices” with the Pakistani judges to get Hanif out of this pickle.
Or the judges should grow a and finally come out and say that General Zia ul Haq had no character to begin with and was a stone cold killer and sociopath whose regime reviled in public flogging of dissidents.